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Danish is as Danish does: Negotiating Ethnic Identities in Early Modern Elsinore, Denmark

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The paper takes its starting point in the Danish city of Elsinore, a city that housed athriving migrant community in the Early Modern period. The presence of a larg ecommunity of resourceful and skillful migrants in the city, many of whom wererefugees from the Dutch wars of independence, called for flexibility and diplomacyon behalf of migrants as well as Danes. The paper aims to shed light on how themigrants succeeded in living relatively freely and peacefully among the Danes in thecity through careful negotiations of public and personal identities. These negotiationsare visible through the careful balancing of public and private languages and prudent adjustment of the legal system that were undertaken to avoid social tension, as well as in settlement patterns in the town and the use of material culture. The many sources from Elsinore thus demonstrate the success of the migrants in a time of social andreligious tension, where religious conformity was demanded in public, and personalbeliefs thus had to be expressed in the privacy of the home.
Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Historical Archaeology
Pages (from-to)284-317
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020

    Research areas

  • Denmark, Early modern era, Ethnicity, Immigration, Nationalism, Urban archaeology

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