Nordic Exposure

Reading and contemplating the article "Nordic Exposure" in the August edition of Vanity Fair see the article.  My take on it is a little unique as I lived in Sweden in the late '70s - early 1980's and then again last year so I have seen that Sweden has changed and is no longer the same social-democratic bastion as before.  Sweden accepts many immigrants and the look of a "Swede" has changed from the stereotypical blonde blue-eyed babe to be more all inclusive.  Now just like in America a Swede now could have their roots in Africa, be adopted from Korea, or be a born and bred Swede with grandparents from Latin America.  A.A. doesn't seem aware of this.  The author also states that "The watchword of all Nordic people, their mantra, is "conformity".  The worst social sin is to stand out, to appear even obliquely boastful or pleased with yourself".

While it is true that people and even ads are much more modest than we're accustomed to in the States (for example advertising stating that something is quite possibly the best) in my experience I haven't found that Swedes shy away from new experiences or people but rather embrace them and are interested in them.  Of course we lived in a cosmopolitan part of Sweden, in the south near the continent, where I and my American husband were welcomed with open arms. Maybe meeting someone different is an acceptable way to be nonconformist and thereby a thrill for the "reclusive Swede", but honestly I found Swedes to be in general more well traveled and open than many Americans that I know.  I'm really not sure where this author A.A. Gill is coming from just that he lives in England and doesn't like Wales.  How is it now that he's an expert on Scandinavia?  Here's a pic of a famous Swede that doesn't fit the stereotypes, Marcus Samuelsson, famous chef of Rooster and Aquavit in New York.  He is so cool, more here:


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