Education in Norway

Norway – education

The education system in Norway has developed according to roughly the same guidelines as the other Scandinavian countries: from the religiously oriented teaching in the Catholic court and monastery schools over the Latin schools and up to today’s school with teaching in humanities, science and practice. music subjects. Only after the Reformation was emphasis placed on teaching the general population. The introduction of the confirmation in 1736 and the Ordinance of 1739 on the schools in the countryside and on the introduction of compulsory schooling laid the foundation for a Norwegian peasant school. Slowly, this school was reformed through a series of landmark school laws in 1827, 1860, 1889, 1896, 1920, 1969, and most recently in 1997. 98.5% of elementary school students and 96% in secondary education attend public school (1998).

From the school year 1997-98, a ten-year primary school was introduced, beginning at the age of six. The structure is decentralized with many small and medium-sized schools, so that the pupils in primary school are distributed with approximately 14% in schools with up to 100 students, approximately 74% in schools with 100-400 students and approximately 12% in schools with more than 400 students (1997).

With the introduction of Reform 94, all 16-19-year-olds were entitled to up to three years of general or vocational higher education, followed by 94% of all 16-year-olds (1995). The vocational study lines all have a one-year basic course with a one- or two-year superstructure.

The higher educations include university and college educations and are offered at the four universities in Oslo, Bergen, Trondheim and Tromsø, at the Norwegian School of Architecture, the Norwegian Sports Academy, the Norwegian Academy of Music, the Norwegian Veterinary College, the Norwegian Academy of Fine Arts, all in Oslo, as well as the Norwegian School of Management in Bergen and the Norwegian Agricultural College in Ås.

In addition, there are a number of state folk high schools, which in the 1990’s were gathered in larger centers for short and medium-term higher education, such as teacher, pedagogue, engineering, social and health educations.

ETYMOLOGY: The name Norway: approximately 840 Nortuagia, approximately 980 Nuruiak, from Old Norse norðr ‘north’ and vegr ‘road’, originally ‘the land which lies to the north’.

OFFICIAL NAME: Kingdom of Norway, Norway (Nynorsk)


POPULATION: 5,258,317 (Source: COUNTRYaah)

AREA: 306,253 km²

OFFICIAL LANGUAGE (S): Norwegian, Sami

RELIGION: Lutherans 88%, other Christians 3%, Muslims 1%, others 2%, no el. unknown 6%

COIN: Norwegian kroner




POPULATION COMPOSITION: Norwegian citizens 96%, others (especially Pakistanis, British, Danes, Swedes and Vietnamese) 4%

GDP PER residents: $ 39,666 (2007)

LIFE EXPECTANCY: men 78 years, women 82 years (2007)




Norway, Nynorsk Norway, is a Kingdom of Northern Western Europe. The old kingdom was in union with Denmark from 1380 (royal community from 1397) to 1814 and with Sweden 1814-1905.

  • Find two-letter abbreviation for each independent country and territory, such as NO which stands for Norway.

Norway was a piece up in the 1900’s. despite an incipient industrialization characterized by agriculture and fisheries. The country is still characterized by scattered settlement, large distances and difficult transport conditions, but since the early 1970’s, rapidly growing oil and gas production in the North Sea has enabled rapid welfare development and modernization, and in the early 2000’s. Norway is one of the richest countries in the world.

Norwegian voters have twice voted against EU membership, but in practice Norway is an integral part of both Nordic and European co-operation. Check youremailverifier for Norway social condition facts.

Norway – geography

Norway consists of the northwestern part of the Scandinavian Peninsula and the many coastal islands off it. The country also includes the Svalbard archipelago with Bjørnøya to the north and Jan Mayen NE of Iceland. Norway also claims sovereignty over the uninhabited Antarctic areas of Bouvet Island, Queen Maud Land and Peter I’s Island. This article deals only with the actual Norway.

Norway – national coat of arms

From the beginning of 1200-t. Norway’s coat of arms consisted of a golden lion in red. Since 1280 the lion has been crowned and has held an ax with golden shaft and leaf of silver. The ax is an attribute of Norway’s national saint, Olav 2. Haraldsson the Holy. From approximately 1400 and until 1844 the ax was reproduced as a curved hellebard. To distance itself from the periods when Norway was in union with Denmark and Sweden, the weapon was drawn in 1937 in 1200-ts style.

Norway – constitution

Norway’s constitution is from 17 May 1814 with many later amendments, which, however, have not changed its fundamental features (see Eidsvoll Constitution). Norway is a constitutional and hereditary monarchy; the political system is parliamentary. The legislature has 169 members of the Storting, who are elected every 4 years by general election. Everyone over the age of 18 who has lived in the country for the previous ten years has the right to vote. Norway is divided into 19 districts, from which 4-17 representatives are elected to the Storting by population; sparsely populated areas, however, are overrepresented. The thing can not be dissolved by the executive in an election period.

Stortinget choose 1/4 of its members to sit in Løgting. The remaining members make up the Odelsting. Each department appoints its own chairmen. Most issues are decided in the Storting; the most important are the state budget and issues of constitutional amendments. However, issues relating to legislation must be dealt with separately in the two sections after preparation in the standing or special committees. Only if Odels- and Lagting disagree, bills must be considered in plenary in the entire Storting. A new law can then be adopted only with 2/3 majority. Constitutional changes required 2/3 majority in two consecutive Storting with intermediate selection.

The executive power formally lies with the king; he presides at the so-called cabinet meetings with the entire government, which are held once a week. In addition, the government holds a few meetings a week. In reality, the executive power lies with the government, which is headed by a prime minister appointed by the king on the advice of the leading politicians in the Storting. Government members may not sit in the Storting. The King has the right to veto, but if the same bill is passed in two Stortings, which are elected by separate subsequent elections, the bill becomes law without the King’s consent.

The government proposes the state budget that the Storting must adopt. In practice, the Storting usually makes very small changes to the proposal, perhaps just concerning a few per cent. of the total budget.

According to Norwegian parliamentary practice, the government can get a majority against it in a proposal that it presents to the Storting, but the political situation can still be such that the government does not take the defeat as an expression of mistrust and therefore does not resign.

Norway – constitution (political parties)

The Norwegian party system emerged with the introduction of parliamentarism and the establishment of the parties Left and Right in 1884. The Left has been split several times, the first time in 1889; among the most important breakaway parties were the Peasants’ Party in 1920 (from 1959 the Center Party) and the Christian People’s Party in 1933.

The Social Democratic Norwegian Labor Party was founded in 1887, was first represented in the Storting in 1903 and has been Norway’s largest party since 1927. It had a majority in the Storting 1945-61 and after 1935 has had total government power for approximately 50 years. The party split in 1923, when the Norwegian Communist Party was formed.

Prime Ministers and Governments after the introduction of parliamentarism in 1884
1884-89 Johan Sverdrup (F)
1889-91 Emil Stang (H)
1891-93 Johannes Steen (F)
1893-95 Emil Stang (H)
1895-98 Francis Hagerup (H, bourgeois coalition)
1898-1902 Johannes Steen (F)
1902-03 Otto Blehr (F)
1903-05 Francis Hagerup (H, bourgeois coalition)
1905-07 Christian Michelsen (Samlingspartiet, bourgeois coalition)
1907-08 Jørgen Løvland (V)
1908-10 Gunnar Knudsen (F)
1910-12 Wollert Konow (FV, H)
1912-13 Jens Bratlie (H, FV)
1913-20 Gunnar Knudsen (F)
1920-21 Otto B. Halvorsen (H)
1921-23 Otto Blehr (F)
1923 Otto B. Halvorsen (H, FV)
1923-24 Abraham Berge (FV, H)
1924-26 JL Mowinckel (F)
1926-28 Ivar Lykke (H, FV)
1928 Christopher Hornsrud (A)
1928-31 JL Mowinckel (F)
1931-32 Peder Kolstad (B)
1932-33 Jens Hundseid (B)
1933-35 JL Mowinckel (F)
1935-45 * Johan Nygaardsvold (A)
1945 Einar Gerhardsen (coalition government)
1945-51 Einar Gerhardsen (A)
1951-55 Oscar Torp (A)
1955-63 Einar Gerhardsen (A)
1963 John Lyng (H, Sp, KrF, V)
1963-65 Einar Gerhardsen (A)
1965-71 Per Borten (Sp, H, V, KrF)
1971-72 Trygve Bratteli (A)
1972-73 Lars Korvald (KrF, Sp, V)
1973-76 Trygve Bratteli (A)
1976-81 Odvar Nordli (A)
1981 Gro Harlem Brundtland (A)
1981-83 Kåre Willoch (H)
1983-86 Kåre Willoch (H, KrF, Sp)
1986-89 Gro Harlem Brundtland (A)
1989-90 Jan P. Syse (H, KrF, Sp)
1990-96 Gro Harlem Brundtland (A)
1996-97 Thorbjørn Jagland (A)
1997-2000 Kjell Magne Bondevik (KrF, Sp, V)
2000-01 Jens Stoltenberg (A)
2001-05 Kjell Magne Bondevik (KrF, H, V)
2005-13 Jens Stoltenberg (A, SV, Sp)
2013- Erna Solberg (H, FrP)
parties: A: Det Norske Arbeiderparti, B: Bondepartiet, FrP: Fremskrittspartiet, FV: Frisinnede Venstre, H: Høyre, KrF: Kristelig Folkeparti, Sp: Senterpartiet, SV: Sosialistisk Venstreparti, V: Venstre
the first party designation corresponds to the party to which the Prime Minister belongs
* government in exile in London 1940-45

In 1961, a left-wing socialist opposition broke out of the Labor Party and founded the Socialist People’s Party (from 1975 the Socialist Left Party). In 1973, the Progress Party was formed on the Danish model; it has had fluctuating connectivity but has in the early 2000-t. established itself as Norway’s second largest party.

The Labor Party has had support from SV in the Storting, but the two parties have not been able to muster a majority together since 1981, which is why the Labor Party has also supported one or more of the center parties. The bourgeois parties consist of a conservative group, the Conservatives and the Progress Party, and a center group, the Center Party, the Christian People’s Party and the Liberals. In 1983 and 1989, the Conservatives formed a government with the Center Party and the Christian People’s Party. In 1997, the center parties formed a minority government.

In 2001-05, the Conservatives were in government with the Liberal Party and the Christian People’s Party. From 2005, there is a red-green coalition government consisting of the Labor Party, the Socialist Left Party and the Center Party.

Norway – administration

Norway is divided into 19 counties (counties) and 434 municipalities. The smallest municipality, Utsira, has just over 200 residents, the largest, Oslo, 526,900 (2005). Oslo is both a municipality and a county municipality.

Norway – economy

Norway has an open economy, where total foreign trade accounts for about 70% of GDP. The country is a member of EFTA and economically closely linked to the EU, although the people in referendums in 1972 and 1994 chose to stay out of the Community. The connection is instead ensured through the EEA agreement from 1994, which means that the internal market also applies to Norway, with the exception of the fisheries and agricultural area, which is subject to special agreements.

Norway’s economy has undergone significant structural changes since the early 1970’s and is now dominated by the oil and services sector, which together account for over 65% of GDP, while traditional mainland industries and fisheries have become less significant. Offshore activities also account for more than half of exports; Norway is the world’s third largest exporter of oil and fourth largest of gas, and the significant oil revenues have led to Norway gaining a position as the world’s second richest country (2005; after Luxembourg). On the other hand, economic developments have become very sensitive to fluctuations in oil prices and the dollar exchange rate, as oil revenues are settled in dollars.

After a solid economic recovery in the mid-1980’s as a result of rising oil revenues and falling international interest rates, Norway experienced a severe economic crisis in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s. The recession was exacerbated by structural problems in the financial sector, which in recent years underwent extensive liberalization. Previously, tight lending had been abolished, which in combination with the fall in interest rates led to significant lending growth. As interest rates began to rise again and economic policies tightened to meet inflationary pressures, banks were hit by huge losses and provisions for loans to both businesses and individuals. The real estate market in particular was hit hard by changes in interest rates, as financing is predominantly based on short-term loans. which must be frequently refinanced. Around 1990, the financial sector was on the verge of bankruptcy, and the state had to make capital available to the sector and take over the majority of shares in the largest banks. Although the economy rebounded in the mid-1990’s and the financial sector has recovered, the state has retained a significant shareholding in the banks, and the state also plays a significant role in other key sectors, notably the oil sector (Statoil, Norsk Hydro).

Since the 1990’s, the changing governments have generally strived to secure surpluses in public budgets for e.g. to be able to meet the rising pension costs that Norway is facing in the coming decades. For this purpose, the so-called Petroleum Fund was established by law in 1990, which is to invest parts of the state’s oil revenues in long-term investments abroad. At the turn of the year 2005/06, the fund is estimated to hold DKK 1,335 billion. ENOUGH; it has been decided on an ongoing basis to only use the return, e.g. so as not to overheat the economy.

The main monetary policy objective has been to ensure a stable exchange rate, and until 1991 the Norwegian krone was pegged to a trade-weighted exchange rate basket. However, after Norway applied for EU membership, the government decided in 1991 to bind the krone to the ECU, but without participating in an exchange rate policy arrangement with the EU countries. However, after currency turmoil and tension in the EMS system, the bond had to be abandoned in December 1992, and the krone floated freely until the spring of 1994, when it was pegged back to the ECU, but at a slightly weaker level than before the fixed exchange rate policy was abandoned in 1992.

Monetary policy really came into focus in 1997, when Norwegian kroner followed the strengthening of the dollar against European currencies. Norges Bank sought to counter the strengthening of the krone through intervention in the foreign exchange market and a reduction in monetary policy key interest rates, which was, however, extremely problematic because Norway was currently in a boom with a shortage of labor and rising inflation. The relaxed monetary policy tightened the demand for a marked fiscal tightening, which the politicians, however, refused. The problems of economic policy coordination led to a dramatic reaction in the financial markets, as external balances towards the end of 1997 showed a marked deterioration after record-breaking surpluses of around 7% of GDP in previous years. The deterioration in the trade and balance of payments was not least due to declining export earnings as a result of falling oil prices, weakened competitiveness and cyclically conditioned, strong import growth. During 1998, the development led to speculation against the Norwegian krone and a significant tightening of monetary policy before the central bank again had to abandon the fixed exchange rate policy. In 2002, a rising krone exchange rate led to bankruptcy, and Norske Bank had to intervene. Economic growth was rather weak from 1999 to 2003, reaching 3-4% in 2004 and 2005, but rising oil prices have improved the balance of payments since 2000 and increased central government revenue. Wage increases above EU level have hampered competitiveness for a number of years, and unemployment has risen to 4.5% (2005).

Norway’s most important trading partners are among the EU countries, which account for three quarters of total exports and account for two thirds of imports. The United Kingdom, Germany, Sweden and Denmark in particular are important trading partners. Denmark’s exports to Norway in 2005 were approximately 26.8 billion DKK, while imports from there were 20.3 billion. The most important Danish export goods were machines for the business community as well as clothing and furniture. The most important Danish imports from Norway were oil products and fish.

Norway – social conditions

Norway has an expanded welfare system, based on public services. Pensions, unemployment benefits and other insurance benefits are mediated through regional branches of the state National Insurance Administration, while the services are provided in the counties or municipalities. Independent social insurance, as it is known in Europe outside the Nordic region, is not used in Norway.

The municipalities are responsible for ensuring that everyone has access to medical treatment by a general practitioner. The care of the elderly and disabled in the form of different types of institutions and different forms of open care is also a municipal responsibility. The institutions are increasingly administered together with service housing, home help, housewife substitute schemes and home nursing care as one common care and nursing service. In Norway, there are relatively more older people living in institutions than in the other Nordic countries.

Unemployment benefits are provided during illness with 100% of the earned income, however with a ceiling. The employer pays for the first two weeks, while the National Insurance then provides up to 50 weeks. There are no waiting days. Self-employed persons are also covered.

Unemployment insurance is compulsory in Norway and independent of the trade union movement. It is administered by the Directorate of Labor and disseminated through its local bodies. The benefit amounts to 2 ‰ of the annual income per. day, corresponding to a little under 2/3 of the income up to a limit. There are three waiting days, and support can be granted for a maximum of 80 weeks.

National pension and supplementary pension from the 67th year are granted. For the 67-69-year-olds, a deduction is made if you have earned income next door; when you are over 70, the basic amount is uncut.

Supplementary pension covers everyone, but is in proportion to the number of years of service. At full seniority, which is 40 years, it accounts for just under 40% of earnings in the top 20 years.

There is no early retirement scheme. Pension before the age of 67 is granted as an early retirement pension and presupposes that the ability to work has been reduced by at least 50% due to illness, injury or disability.

The social benefits are paid partly through the ordinary taxes and partly through contributions paid by the employers.

Norway – health conditions

At the beginning of the 1900’s, Norway had the highest life expectancy in the Nordic countries for both sexes. In 1996, it was 75.4 years for men and 81.1 years for women, about three years higher than that of Danes. The mortality rate in the first year of life in 1996 was 4.0 per. 1,000 live births, which is almost a halving from the latter half of the 1980’s. The population growth was 1990-95 approximately 0.4% pr. year.

As everywhere in Europe, the leading causes of death are cardiovascular disease and cancer. Cardiovascular diseases caused in 1995 per. 100,000 residents 374 deaths among men and 336 among women, which corresponded to the average in the Nordic countries. Cancer mortality has been fairly constant in the 1980’s and 1990’s and is approximately 20% below the Danish. The frequency of suicides has been slightly declining and is together with the Swedish lowest in the Nordic countries. By the end of 1997, Norway had reported around 620 cases of AIDS, which was significantly less than half of the Danish figures.

For many decades, Norwegian society has ensured the dispersed population’s coverage with services from the health care system with an expanded network of publicly employed doctors, who in addition to their function as general practitioners also had tasks with generally preventive measures at the local level. This system is partly continued through a municipal medical scheme, which covers the vast majority of the population’s need for medical care. There is also an increased possibility that general practitioners can provide the primary care service.

On 1 January 2002, Norway implemented a total reorganization of the hospital system upon the entry into force of the Specialist Health Services Act, as the state took over the hospitals and specialist services from the counties (counties). The hospital system has been organized into five geographical regions that can be considered as independent companies (regional health companies) with the state at the Ministry of Health as the sole owner. In Region South (South) also includes the former state Rigshospital in Oslo. The management of the regional companies is placed in the hands of boards of directors, which are appointed by the general meeting (ie the state), however, so that one third must be representatives of the employees. The day-to-day management is a director who is employed by the board.

The five regional health companies each establish a number of underlying health companies, which are also independent companies, organized in a similar way as the parent companies. In the spring of 2002, 46 health companies were established, four of which are responsible for pharmacy. The vast majority are organized on the basis of an existing hospital.

The tasks for the hospital system are continued diagnostics, treatment and care of patients, training of health personnel and health-related research.

The law explicitly states that ownership can not be changed without the approval of the Storting, ie. by a change in the law. The law thus does not call for a privatization. During the reorganization, the state has taken over all the counties’ institutions without compensation, however with some form of compensation in connection with any debt and pension obligations.

The state assumes all expenses for the hospitals; the total costs for general and psychiatric hospitals as well as institutions for rehabilitation, etc. in 2002 amounts to approximately 52 billion Norwegian kr.

Norway – alcohol policy

Production and turnover of alcohol is strictly regulated in Norway. Luxury beer, wine and spirits can only be bought in government shops, Vinmonopolet, and in specialty liquor outlets; beer with pilsner strength can be bought in regular stores. In 1975, advertising bans on alcoholic beverages were introduced in Norway; light beer was excluded, but in 1997 the ban was extended to include light beer produced by the same breweries that brew lager beer. Alcohol taxes are high and the high price level has led to a lot of smuggling and illegal home burning.

In the years after 1814, home burning was allowed in Norway. Alcohol consumption rose sharply and social problems increased correspondingly. From the 1850’s, it turned out, an influential abstinence movement was organized, which sought to limit home burning. The abstinence movement was strengthened by the advance of the labor movement, and in 1916 the Storting decided to introduce a ban on alcohol; in 1917 a ban on liqueur wine was also introduced. In 1919, the ban was confirmed by a referendum. However, the ban on liqueur wine was lifted in 1923, and after a new referendum in 1927, the ban on spirits was lifted; at the same time, however, the individual municipalities were given the right to maintain a ban on the sale and serving of alcohol. The wine monopoly was established in 1922 and functioned from 1923 as a state sales monopoly. In addition to the exclusive right to sell, Vinmonopolet had until 1995 the exclusive right to import wine and spirits.

For many years, most of Norway was drained; exceptions were primarily the larger cities. From the 1980’s, however, there has been a gradual liberalization of alcohol sales, and the number of municipalities with alcohol bans fell from 91 in 1980 to only one in 1997. During the same period, the number of outlets doubled, and the number of outlets with liquor licenses increased fivefold, and the opening hours extended. However, alcohol consumption in Norway is still significantly lower than in most other countries in Europe.

Norway – legal system

In Norway, the oldest known legal order was oral tradition, which applied in defined areas of the country. Judicial unity was introduced by Magnus Lagabøter’s Landslov og Bylov (1274-76). It broke with primitive legal notions such as blood revenge and duel and with the strictly formal rules of procedure, and it applied in Norway until Christian V’s Norwegian Law of 1687.

After Norway’s unification with Denmark, the legislative power was essentially with the Danish king, and the legislation was 1687-1814 essentially common to Denmark and Norway.

The constitution of 17.5.1814 introduced a system change. The Constitution was inspired by the 1776 Declaration of Independence of the United States, the French Revolution of 1789, and the later American and French constitutions, and was then one of Europe’s most radical constitutions. It was clearly inspired by the ideals of the Enlightenment, especially Montesquieuslearn about the distribution of power. It contains provisions on the form of government, on the legislature (the Storting), the executive (the government) and the judiciary (the courts), as well as on human rights. The Constitution is the highest source of law in Norway. Other provisions that come into conflict with it must give way, and the Norwegian Supreme Court has in certain cases declared a law unconstitutional. The Constitution provided that a new “Ordinary Civil and Criminal Code” should be drawn up as soon as possible. A criminal law was introduced in 1842, while the plans for a Norwegian civil law book were not taken up until 1953 with the establishment of a civil law book committee. At the suggestion of this committee, laws on co-ownership, claims, easements, neighbors, etc. have since been introduced since the 1800’s. a new penal code from 1902 has also been introduced,Nordic legal co-operation.

In 1988, Norway introduced the UN Convention on Contracts for the International Sale of Goods, CISG, and together with Finland and Sweden and later Iceland the new Nordic Purchase Act. Norway has transposed a large part of EU legislation as legislation and has also acceded to the 1988 Lugano Convention on Jurisdiction and the Enforcement of Judgments in Civil and Commercial Matters.

The court system is structured in such a way that civil cases are, as a general rule, initiated by mediation in a conciliation council, which is found in all municipalities. If a settlement is not reached, the case is dealt with by the city or district court, which is also the first instance for processing criminal cases. The decisions of the City and District Court can be appealed to the total of six courts of appeal. The highest instance is the Supreme Court, to which the decisions of the Court of Appeal can be appealed. In criminal cases that have been appealed from the Court of Appeal and in civil cases where the appeal concerns a property value of less than DKK 100,000, permission from the Supreme Court Appeals Committee is required., so that the case can be heard in the Supreme Court. Otherwise, the Appeals Committee has the right to reject anchor, if it is found obvious that the appeal will not lead to anything.

A new Disputes Act from 2005 is expected to enter into force on 1 July 2007. It will continue the current court structure. However, the conciliation councils will have a somewhat more limited authority than today and will therefore no longer be considered the ordinary courts. The functions of the Supreme Court Appeals Committee will be continued by the Supreme Court Appeals Committee.

Norway – military

The armed forces are (2006) 25,800, of which 15,200 conscripts. The service period is 12 months. The army is at 14,700, the navy (Navy) at 6100 and the Air Force (Air Force) at 5000. The reserve is at 219,000. All defenses are equipped with equipment produced in the West, a significant part of the Norwegian arms and shipbuilding industry. Most of the equipment is from the 1980’s and 1990’s. The armed forces’ mobilized main force is organized and equipped to operate under the country’s special geographical and climatic conditions, including under Arctic conditions in the northern Norwegian winter. Increasingly, the standing force is built to make and maintain contributions to international operations.

Norway was one of the founding members of NATO.

Norway – trade union movement

The first trade unions in Norway emerged in the 1870’s, and soon after that trade unions and local joint organizations developed. In 1899, these joined the Arbeidernes faglige Landsorganisasjon (AfL), which after a weak start became the dominant direction within the trade union movement. AfL, since 1957 LO, is part of the total social democratic labor movement. In 1911, a syndicalist-inspired opposition emerged, which gained a majority at the LO congress in 1920, and this more radical direction characterized the Norwegian labor movement in the interwar period.

LO is an association of 28 unions with a total of over 790,000 members (1997). Originally, the unions were divided by union, but after a resolution at the LO Congress in 1923, the tendency has been for the unions to be transformed into industrial unions; the largest – Fellesforbundet – emerged in 1988 through an association of five unions. This development has been reinforced by the development of Norwegian industry. The trade union movement organizes approximately 60% of employees, and the LO federations proportion of which is slightly below 2/3. Other trade unions have gained increasing support among the trade unions, especially the Central Confederation of Trade Unions, established in 1977 as an association of 17 unions, which organizes officials in the financial sector; in 1997 it had approximately 216,000 members. Akademikernes Fellesorganisasjon, founded in 1974, was after growing quite significantly in 1997 split into two main organizations with resp. 170,000 and 80,000 members. One takes care of the higher educated, while the other mainly organizes employees with three-year educations. Outside the main professional organizations, there are approximately 25 unions and unions, of which the Norwegian Teachers’ Association is the largest with approximately 77,000 members in 1998.

In comparison with the other Nordic countries, the percentage of organizations is low, but still significantly higher than in most other non-Nordic countries. In the 1990’s, the trade union movement faced major structural problems, including the low organization of (part-time working) women, the declining importance of the industrial sector and the growing importance of the tertiary sector.

Norway – library service

University Library in Oslo (grdl. 1811) also served as Norway’s national library from 1815-1997. Thereafter, the former library building (from 1913) will be home to the National Library, while the University Library will move to a new building on Blindern. A department of the National Library, with safety magazines in the mountains, has operated in Mo i Rana since 1989.

The University Library in Trondheim was established by coordinating the libraries at the Royal Norwegian Society of Sciences (grdl. 1760), the Norwegian University of Technology (grdl. 1910) and the Norwegian Teacher Training College (grdl. 1922). The university libraries in Bergen (1948) and Tromsø (1968) are based on the sites respectively. 1825 and 1872 libraries of existing museums. Of the libraries of other higher education institutions, the most important are the library of the Norwegian School of Agricultural Sciences in Ås and the library of the Norwegian School of Economics in Bergen. The coordinating body for the research libraries is the National Library Service, headed by the National Librarian.

In the area of ​​public libraries, Norway took a leading position in the Nordic region around 1900 due to Haakon Nyhuus’ reorganization of the Deichman Library. Later, a strained economy was stressful for Norway’s public libraries. However, the Library Act of 1935 pointed forward, and in 1947 it became mandatory for municipalities to maintain libraries. Central libraries (county libraries) are available in all 19 counties. The central body for the public libraries is the Norwegian Library Inspectorate, headed by the library director.

Norway – archives

National Archives in Oslo, established in 1817, contains material from the central administration and the Supreme Court, while the eight state archives for one or more counties have collections from local/regional state administration. The national team for Local and Private Archives primarily organizes local and regional archives. Several of these contain municipal archives, and many, like the state archives, contain material from companies, organizations and individuals. Significant special archives belong to the labor movement and the Storting. The National Archives is responsible for Arkivnett Norge, which disseminates archive information on the Internet.

Archives from the union period with Denmark have been transferred from Copenhagen on several occasions; the Danish-Norwegian archive question regarding the time before 1814 was resolved by an agreement from 1991.

Norway – mass media

Measured per. per capita, Norway is the world’s leading newspaper country, and the country has around 100 independent newspapers. In the field of radio and television, the Norwegian state radio Norsk Rikskringkasting originally had a monopoly, but since 1988 the monopoly has been abolished and more competing companies have been added.

Norway – visual art

Norway – visual art, The characteristic common Nordic art, which was created in the time from approximately 800 to the 1st half of the 12th century, was rooted in the Germanic animal ornamentation. Towards the end of the period, it lived with the Romanesque art, which now dominated.

Norway – handicrafts

Norway’s handicrafts have deep roots in folk art, which had its heyday approximately 1730-1850. It is peculiar to Norway that folk art, incl. the peasant silver, is considered equal to the art and object production of urban culture and craftsmen.

Folk art was developed in the settlements in wood and textile works as well as in furniture decorations with rose paint in regional styles. In older industrial production, ovens with relief decorations can be highlighted; 1600-1850, about 30 ironworks produced more than 800 furnace types.

Porcelain and glass production have also taken hold; Herrebøe Fajansefabrikk designed porcelain in a rich rococo style, and Nøstetangen’s engraved glass goblets were characteristic of the 18th century.

1880-1910, an Old Norse decorative style was expressed in both the furniture and goldsmith art: the dragon style. The style was strongly stimulated by several Viking ship finds, including in Gokstad in 1880.

Within the art of goldsmithing, a filigree art also emerged, where the use of enamel achieved great richness of color in the metal. Enamel has gained a solid foothold in Norway since the beginning of the 20th century with Gustav Gaudernack’s (1865-1914) and Torolf Prytz ‘(1850-1938) works as well as with Grete Prytz Kittelsen’s further development of the enamel art in the 1950’s. Among the tapestries is Frida Hansen’s (1855-1931) art nouveau- inspired tapestries from the time around 1900.

The post-war handicrafts are characterized by expressive diversity, however, the references to folk art are numerous. In 1975, the organization Norske Brukskunstnere changed its name to Norske Kunsthåndverkere, signaling the development towards a freer artistic expression. In a special position is the internationally renowned jewelery artist Tone Vigeland.

Norwegian furniture design showed an early ergonomic approach; best known is the chair concept Balance and the child seat Tripp Trapp (Peter Opsvik b. 1939), produced by Stokke AS since 1972.

Norway – architecture

Middle Ages and Renaissance

The churches of the period were predominantly of wood, corresponding to the country’s ancient building customs, whereas the stone building represents a foreign, original southern European tradition, which was especially foreign in the cities and by the power elite, kings and bishops. The majority of the churches erected in the country’s 1250 parishes were made of wood and built as stave structures as opposed to the loft building, a technique that became increasingly prevalent in secular construction. The preserved 30 stave churches from the 1100’s and 1200’s, ranging from simple choir-ship facilities (Haltdalen) to complicated constructions with an elevated central section as well as swallow passages and apses (Borgund), constitute a unique cultural heritage that, despite its loans from the stone building maintains a refined wooden architecture that was once widespread in Northern Europe.

The stone churches of the coastal towns reveal in particular the Anglo-Norman influence (also known from the early stone churches of southern Scandinavia), which in Norway is maintained through the High Middle Ages to reach a peak in the rebuilding of the episcopal church in Trondheim, Nidaros Cathedral (1170-1325). Despite extensive reconstructions, it still stands as a significant monument in the line of European cathedrals.

Both the carved and the carved building sculptures, which are included as part of the architecture, reveal the connection to the Danish wooden building tradition. It appears of the column motif, which in several Romanesque stave church portals is spun into an ornamental rug, whose animal and plant sling is reminiscent of the ornamentation of the Viking Age. However, the building sculpture is especially English-influenced, especially in the 1200’s and 1300’s. The Renaissance is not richly represented in Norway and first appears with Christian IV’s new construction of Kristiania (Oslo).

Norway – architecture (after 1850)

Early historicism in Norway was particularly influenced by the national romanticism of Germany, where many Norwegian architects over the years had been educated. HE Schirmer’s Kristianias Botsfengsel (1851) and JH Nebelong’s neo-Gothic castle Oscarshall (1852) on Bygdøy testify to this. Victorian facade architecture in cement plaster became a well-known theme for the extensive factory and multi-storey building of the 1850-60’s. The Norwegian wooden building tradition ensured the spread of the picturesque Swiss style in the province, with HE Schirmers and W. von Hannos (1826-82) town halls and station buildings on the main line Oslo-Eidsvoll 1853-67. An independent Norwegian national style was introduced around 1885 with the so-called dragon style, eg HH Munthes (1848-98) Frognerseteren sports restaurant from 1891, designed as a traditional log house with ornamented gable panels. EC Christie’s neo – Gothic restoration of Nidaros Cathedral (1872-1906) was of great importance for the period’s church building.

With the National Theater (1899) and the city of Ålesund rebuilt in 1906, the Art Nouveau style broke through alongside the “granite baroque” manifestation with heavy quarry surfaces, eg ABS Greves (1871-1931) new main building for the Norwegian University of Technology (1916), where the country’s first architectural school six years before had been created. Characteristic of the interwar years ‘style change is the development from A. Arneberg and M. Poulsson’s classicist villas from around 1910 in the Oslo area to the same architects’ functionalist design of Oslo City Hall(1931). International functionalism gained several significant interpreters: G. Blaksted (1893-1985) and H. Munthe-Kaas introduced with The Odd Fellow building (1934), the modular facade scheme, and the O. Bangs (1891-1942) office building Samfunnshuset (1940) in Oslo are a stylish example of 1930’s functionalism.

The prosaic construction tasks of the post-war years were particularly concentrated on the multi-storey housing construction and resulted in e.g. in open park buildings with staggered apartment blocks, partly under the influence of A. Korsmos and K. Knutsen’s (1903-69) humanistic visions. In the period after 1960, the confrontation with modernism’s schematic modular buildings was seen in a number of expressionist individual buildings, often designed in partnership: K. Lund’s (b. 1927) and N. Slaatto’s (1923-97) individualistic style came, among other things. expressed in Det norske Veritas’ headquarters by the Oslo Fjord (1984). S. Fehn’s versatile work is reflected in the Archaeological Museum in Hamar (1973), which combines modern glass surfaces with a medieval building structure in stone. The opposing tendencies in the international architecture of the 1970’s-80’s are reflected in J. Digerud’s (b. 1938) and J. Lundberg’s (b. 1933) extensive production;

Norwegian architecture made a strong mark in the 1990’s with many large, public buildings, both at home and abroad. Modernism is still dominant with Sverre Fehn as the foremost representative. Fehn received the Pritzker Prize in 1997, the “Nobel Prize in Architecture”, and in 2001 the newly established Grosch Prize; among his works are the Aukrust Museum in Alvdal (1996) and Ivar Aasen Senter in Ørsta (2000). The architectural firm Snøhetta is also built in a spectacular, very original style as seen in Lillehammer Art Museum (1993), Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Egypt (2002) and the winning project from 2002 for a new national opera house at Bjørvika in Oslo. An example of an architecture that, by its design, describes what it contains, is the Norwegian Oil Museum in Stavanger (1999) by Lunde & Løvseth Arkitektur A/S, which with an almost massively closed main building in gray gneiss signals the Norwegian bedrock, while three round steel buildings on pillars in the sea refer to the drilling platform. The University Library in Oslo (1999) at the architectural firm Telje-Torp-Aasen shows with the black-clad, column-bearing façade and the bright interior a new form of airy monumental architecture. The architectural firm Aviaplan has been responsible for large airport constructions, including in Gardermoen (1998), and one of the partners, the internationally known Niels Torp (b. 1940), has built British Airways’ headquarters at Heathrow, England (1998).

Norway – literature

It has been customary in Norwegian literary history writing to refer to Norse poetry (see Norse culture – literature) as part of Norwegian, despite the fact that most of it was written in Iceland. The most significant Norwegian work from the period is Konungs skuggsjá, Kongespejlet, a pedagogical writing that expresses the educational ideals of the time.

In the 1500’s. extinct Norwegian as a written language, and the union period up to 1814 is often referred to as the time of the Danish-Norwegian common literature. Of the few Norwegian-born authors who made their mark here, Ludvig Holberg is the undisputed loner.

In the latter half of the 18th century, national patriotic moods began to prevail, above all among Norwegian students in Copenhagen, and in connection with this a certain literary activity with the Norwegian Society as its center. Authors such as Johan Nordahl Brun, Claus Fasting, Jens Zetlitz and Johan Herman Wessel wrote everything from merry drinking songs and epigrams to pious hymns and high-sounding tragedies, partly with national historical motifs.

During the Union era, very few books were published in Norway, and this picture did not change significantly in the decades that followed. Around 1820, an average of four works of fiction were published annually, most with classicist models.

National Romance

The romance came late and became less important in Norway than in Denmark. It had the greatest impact in the 1840’s in the form of national romanticism. Romantic features can be found in the short story list of Maurits Hansen’s authors. The most important poet of the period, Henrik Wergeland, who emerged around 1830, combines romance and the Enlightenment, political liberalism and cosmic-religious universalism. Wergeland unfolded in a number of genres, but created his supreme as a lyricist, breaking with the harmonious ideals of classicism.

Romantic character also has JS Welhaven’s poems, but unlike Wergeland he emphasized clarity and harmony and was deeply skeptical of the opponent’s strong nationalism. In the 1840’s, however, Welhaven joined the National Romantic movement, whose admiration for the Viking Age is combined with worship of the peasant and enthusiasm for Norwegian nature and people’s lives. Asbjørnsen and Moe’s fairy tale collections and Ivar Aasen’s studies of rural dialects are the clearest expressions of a shift towards popular forms of expression that were perceived as specifically Norwegian.

Around 1850, a new generation of poets emerged with Henrik Ibsen and Bjørnstjerne Bjørnson at the helm. They gradually did away with national romanticism, and the period up to 1875 can be seen as a precursor to later realism. National motifs continue to dominate, both in the historical plays and in Bjørnson’s stylistically innovative peasant tales.

Camilla Collett, the literary pioneer of the women’s movement, occupies a special position with the novel Amtmandens Døttre (1854-55), the first example of realistic trend poetry in Norway. Between 1850 and 1870, a total of 13 women debuted, mostly with prose books.

The realistic trend is evident not least in Aasmund Olavsson Vinje’s prose. In his journalistic works, Ferdaminne fraa Sumaren 1860 (1861), he combines sharp realism with political commentary, ironically wide with poetic sensitivity. Among the period’s main works are Ibsen’s two verse dramas Brand (1866) and Peer Gynt (1867), in which the poet definitely put an end to national romanticism.

Realism and naturalism

With Georg Brandes as inspiration, the poets put problems under debate in plays and novels. The first social drama is Bjørnson’s A Bankruptcy (1875). Ibsen followed up with Samfundets støtter (1877) and gained modern Norwegian drama international fame with masterpieces such as A Doll’s Home (1879), Ghosts (1881), An Enemy of the People (1882) and The Wild Duck (1884).

Prose writers such as Jonas Lie, Alexander Kielland, Kristian Elster and Arne Garborg also contribute to what has been called the golden age of Norwegian poetry. In a realistic form with impressionist stylistic features, the current societal problems took up with a critique of (religious) prejudices and social inequalities. The 1880’s were the heyday of the new realistic novel. Lies Familjen paa Gilje (1883) is one of the main works. The family is also the arena in Kielland’s broadly depicting social trend novels with sting against church, civil service and new bourgeoisie: Garman & Worse (1880), Skipper Worse (1882), Married (1883), Jacob(1891). Krassest is the tendency of Garborg, one of the first significant authors to write in Nynorsk (Bondestudentar, 1883, Mannfolk, 1886).

Most visible among the naturalists, however, is Amalie Skram. Some of her marriage novels also have an autobiographical starting point (Constance Ring, 1885, Forraadt, 1892). A broader and more “objective” naturalism is found in her four-volume work Hellemyrsfolket (1887-98), a major work in Scandinavian naturalism.


In the 1890’s, a reaction to the positivist social poetry of the last decade occurred, a turn towards the inner life with strong elements of decadence, mysticism, natural moods and religious idealism as the background for the concept of neo-romanticism. The established poets were also influenced by the new atmosphere. In the two collections Trold (1891-92), Lie builds on legends and myths. A typical decadent novel is Garborg’s Tired Men (1891), and in a number of later works he addressed religious issues. Ibsen’s later dramas are similar to in-depth psychological studies with strong symbolic elements (Bygmester Solness, 1892, Naar vi död vaagner, 1898).

Knut Hamsun was responsible for the most powerful confrontation with 1880’s literature. Instead of the societal-reformative type poetry, he would put a psychological literature that depicted the complex soul life of modern man. He realized the program in Hunger (1890), which also marks a turning point in the European context. Both in theme, human image and writing style, the novel anticipates 1900’s modernist prose poetry. Even more distinctly “modernist” is Mysteries (1892), while the prosaic short novel Pan (1895) is neo-romantic.

Fairy tale motifs and unconscious soul life are also important elements in other of the 1890’s’ new prose writers, Hans E. Kinck, especially in the breakthrough book Flaggermusvinger (short stories, 1895). In the 1890’s, there was also a renewal in poetry, and as a genre it gained increased importance. A major work is Garborg Haugtussa (1895). More innovative and modern are Vilhelm Krag (1871-1933) and Sigbjørn Obstfelder.


The period from approximately 1905 onwards is often referred to as neo-realism. A generational change took place, and social issues were put on the agenda again in broad-based societal novels. In a series of highly socially critical novels, Hamsun glorified the old peasant society with the Nobel Prize-winning Field Crop (1917) as its highlight. Here and in the Landstryker trilogy (1927-33), Hamsun is in pact with a main line in neo-realism: the depiction of the conflicts that arise with the rise of industry and modern capitalism. The demographic changes, mobility and social unrest that modernization brought with them laid the foundation for a realistic poetry characterized by social indignation, but also with ethical and individual psychological themes.

Modernist poetry in Europe, however, passed by. Olav Duun combined psychological analysis and broad environment depiction of a series of historical novels from Trøndelagskysten (Juvikfolke, 1-6, 1918-23, the trilogy fellow human being, 1929-33).

Sigrid Undset portrayed modern women’s destinies before turning to the Middle Ages in her masterpiece Kristin Lavransdatter (1920-22), for which she received the Nobel Prize. One of the most extensive works of the time is Kristofer Uppdal’s ten- volume series Dansen genom skuggeheimen (1911-24), which depicts the emergence of the working class. A significant working author is also Johan Falkberget.

Overall, neo-realist prose spans a wider field, socially and geographically, than poetry of earlier periods. People like to talk about “the literary mapping” of Norway.

The modern ones

A number of new poets emerged with the Bokmål authors Herman Wildenvey, Arnulf Øverland and Olaf Bull and the New Norwegian Olav Nygard and Tore Ørjasæter at the helm. Norwegian poetry, however, remained largely unaffected by contemporary expressionism and modernism.

In the mid-1920’s, a new generation of cultural radicals emerged. Under the influence of Freud and Wilhelm Reich, they attacked the patriarchal society. At the head were the cultural radical troika Helge Krog, Arnulf Øverland and Sigurd Hoel. Hoel’s psychologically-realistic novel art (The Road to the End of the World, 1933, Fourteen Days Before the Frosts, 1935) formed a school. More experimental was the Danish-born Aksel Sandemose with A refugee crosses his trail (1933).

Authors such as Cora Sandel, Nini Roll Anker and Nils Johan Rud were also associated with cultural radicalism, while Ronald Fangen and Sigurd Christiansen were more concerned with religious and ethical themes. Helge Krog and Nordahl Grieg are among the leading playwrights of the time. The latter adopted new assembly techniques and broke into Our Glory and Our Power (1935) and Defeat (1937) with the strong Ibsen tradition.

In the interwar period, women asserted themselves for the first time as poets with Aslaug Vaa and Haldis’ mother Vesaas. The most important lyrical innovation was Rolf Jacobsen by introducing the city and the new technology as motifs.

During the occupation (1940-45), Nazi censorship laid a clammy hand over all intellectual life. A majority of the authors went on strike, and after 1942 no significant books of fiction were published. The war naturally became a dominant theme after 1945 with Hoel’s Meeting at the Milestone (1947) and Sandemose’s Werewolf (1958) as central works.

One of the most prolific narrators of post-war literature, Agnar Mykle, continued the cultural radical legacy of the anti-Puritan double novel Lasso around Mrs Luna and the Song of the Red Ruby (1954-56). Fine depictions of children and the environment are given by Torborg Nedreaas in the Herdis books (1950-71). Both belong within the realistic tradition.

The most important experiments were performed by Sandemose, Tarjei Vesaas and Johan Borgen. Vesaas wrote novels with expressionist features and mixes symbolism and realism in The Birds (1957) and The Ice Castle (1963). With the Lillelord trilogy (1955-57) and especially “I” (1959), Borgen renewed the psychological novel.

Modernism, socialism, postmodernism

In poetry, a modernist breakthrough took place around 1950 with Paal Brekke as a pioneer, and during the 1950’s, the “free verse” pushed traditional poetry aside. The “post-war modernists” include Gunvor Hofmo, Olav H. Hauge, Hans Børli, Astrid Hjertenæs Andersen and somewhat later Stein Mehren.

Around 1965, a new generation showed its face with the Profil circle as the driving force in a showdown with the realistic prose and the symbol-heavy post-war poetry. Central figures here were Dag Solstad, Espen Haavardsholm, Jan Erik Vold and Einar Økland. A modernist prose under the influence of Kafka, Beckett and the French neo-novel was developed. Contributions to the renewal were also made by Øystein Lønn, Liv Køltzow and Tor Åge Bringsværd.

The literary upheaval is closely linked to the anti-authoritarian youth uprising. The populist and Marxist currents later led to a revitalization of social realist prose with an emphasis on depictions of the working environment. It was especially cultivated by the so-called AKP writers, led by Dag Solstad. The AKP was the Workers’ Communist Party, founded by Norwegian Maoists. In parallel with this ran a more experimental prose, called “social modernism “, with Kjartan Fløgstad as a central figure.

In the 1970’s, a special women’s literature was also developed with close ties to the feminist movement, led by Bjørg Vik. A simpler form with strong skepticism towards “over-consumption” of symbols and metaphors characterizes the lyrics from 1965 onwards with Jan Erik Vold as the special pioneer. In the 1970’s, the fighting and utility lyricism flourished again, but in the 1980’s the poets turned in a broad front towards the “meaning literature” of the 1970’s.

Realism came again in disrepute. Fantastic forms of various kinds gained greater space, and several writers entered into dialogue with postmodernism. One of these is Jan Kjærstad with Homo Falsus (1984) and The Seducer (1993). The modernists also include Tor Ulven, Lars Aamund Vaage and Jon Fosse, while realistic storytelling methods are handled by e.g. Herbjørg Wassmo (Tora trilogy, 1981-86, and the Dinatrilogy, 1989-97) and Erik Fosnes Hansen (among other things, Psalm at the end of the journey, 1990).

With authors such as Tomas Espedal and Karl Ove Knausgård, realism returns in a new, outrageous form. In the self-engaging and brush-up autofiction, the author’s own persona is used as the focal point of the work, thus placing itself in a field of tension between reality and fiction, as is seen, for example, in Knausgaard’s monumental masterpiece, My Struggle 1-6.

Norway – theater

There are assumptions about theater life in Norway already in the Middle Ages, but more certain traces are found only after the Reformation with eg humanistic school dramas. German and Danish theater troupes played in the city halls or in private party and ballrooms. Around 1800, permanent theater buildings were built (Bergen 1800, Oslo 1802). Norway’s first purely professional theater, which opened in 1827, was Christiania Public Theater. This was followed by the Christiania Theater (1837-99), which in 1899 became the National Theater; Danish actors in particular dominated here. In the 1850-60’s came the first purely Norwegian theaters, characterized by the urge for linguistic independence. At the Norwegian Theater in Bergen 1850-63 (reopened as the National Stage 1876) both Ibsen and Bjørnson performedas directors and playwrights. The National Theater in Oslo has especially had to stimulate Norwegian drama. The first boss was Bjørn Bjørnson (1859-1942, student of William Bloch), who as a modern instructor emphasized ensemble playing. The idea with Det Norske Teatret in Oslo was that all drama should be played in Nynorsk. In 1985, this theater got a new house, one of the most modern in Europe. It was not until 1936 that Trondheim got a permanent theater, Trøndelag Teater, which is housed in Norway’s oldest preserved theater building (from 1816). In 1949, Norway got its National Theater, which toured all over the country with a permanent ensemble.

The first regional stages from the 1970’s initially belonged to the National Theater as Hålogaland Theater in Tromsø. In 1953, the Statens Teaterskole was established in Oslo, primarily with acting education. In the 1960’s and 1970’s, the outreach Free Theater Groups came; Odin Theater(1964), who after a short time moved to Denmark, was one of them. Porsgrunn Grenland Friteater (1976) also ran educational activities within physical theater. De Frie Teatergrupper was organized through Teatercentrum and got a permanent venue, Black Box, in Oslo in 1985. In 1987, Oslo got Det Open Open Theater, a workshop theater as a hub for Norwegian contemporary drama. In the 1980’s, many alternative regional small theaters rooted in the local environment and culture emerged as a kind of counterculture to the established institutional theaters, such as Beaivváš Sámi Teáhter in Kautokeino in northern Norway in 1980.

Norway – dance

Norway has a rich tradition of folk dance, but also has a reputable national ballet.

Folk dance

Norwegian folk dance is both dance-wise and musically characterized by the group of older couple dances, which in summary is called village dances. They are considered Norwegian national dances and are closely associated with Norwegian fiddle music (see harding fiddle). The main forms are springar (Western Norway) and pols (Eastern Norway), which are danced to music in three parts, as well as corridors and halling., which is danced to music in two parts. The village dances are improvisational with alternating figures comprising both solo dance and pair dancing. The couples follow each other in a ring in the same way as in the round dances of the waltz family, which gained a foothold in the Nordic countries in the 1800’s. The dance repertoire also includes singing games and tour dancing for several couples. A special genre is the song dances, which arose in the folk dance movement in the first part of the 1900’s, inspired by the folk song dance in the Faroe Islands.

Norway – dance – the classical ballet

In the first half of the 20th century, the classical ballet was performed at the National Theater with names such as Gyda Christensen (1872-1964) and Lillebil Ibsen.

The first professional ballet ensemble was Ny Norsk Ballett, formed in 1948 by Gerd Kjølaas (1909-2000) and the British Louise Browne (1906-96). After several phases with different names, the company became part of the Norwegian Opera, which was founded in 1958; Australian Harcourt Algernoff (1903-67) became ballet director.

He and his successors expanded the repertoire, which came to consist of contemporary choreography by eg George Balanchine, Antony Tudor, Birgit Cullberg and Glen Tetley, the great classics from the romantic period and new Norwegian choreography by Kjersti Alveberg (b. 1948) and Kari Blakstad.

Significant leaders were Sonia Arova (b. 1927) (1966-71) and Anne Borg (b. 1936) (1971-77 and 1983-88). From 1990 to 2002, the Dane Dinna Bjørn led the company, which she led to international recognition. In 1992, the ballet was renamed the Norwegian National Ballet.

Norway also has a number of smaller groups that practice modern dance, including New Carte Blanche in Bergen, with choreographers such as Ingun Bjørnsgaard (b. 1962) and Ina Christel Johannessen (b. 1959).

Norway – music

The oldest evidence of the cultivation of music has Norway in common with the other Nordic countries, namely partly archaeological finds, especially lurks, partly more or less historical, often imaginative mentions in the eddas, sagas and chronicles. The first written sources of music came with Christianity in the late 900’s. The material now consists only of fragments, but from these, in 1911, almost completely succeeded in recreating the liturgical music for the celebration of Saint Olav; the influence of the English missionaries in this is unmistakable. Tradition is also a two-part anthem in honor of St. Magnus, the oldest known polyphonic piece of Nordic origin; the music is remarkable for its time by using almost exclusively the third interval.

Only two Norwegian composers are known from the 1500’s, Caspar Ecchienus and Johan Nesenus (died 1604). Around 1600, city musicians were given privileges in Bergen and Oslo with responsibility for city music in collaboration with the organists and students at the Latin schools. Concerts were organized in the major cities in the 1700’s. of music companies consisting mainly of amateurs; one of them, Musikselskabet Harmonien, founded in Bergen 1765, still exists. Georg von Bertouch (1668-1743) left his mark on music life in Kristiania, while Johan Daniel Berlin (1714-1787) and his son Johan Heinrich Berlin (1741-1807) were organists in Trondheim. The violinist Johan Henrik Freithoff (1713-1767) from Kristiansand and the pianist Israel Gottlieb Wernicke (1755-1836) from Bergen were especially active in Denmark.

With the secession from Denmark in 1814, a desire for national independence grew, and Kristiania took a leading position in cultural life. With imitations of folk music, Waldemar Thrane created a national opéra-comique, The Mountain Adventure(1825). Ole Bull was one of the 1800’s most famous violinists, who was the first to make Norway internationally known in the music world, and in Paris TDA Tellefsen (1823-1874) was a famous student of Chopin. More domestic fame was achieved by Otto Winther-Hjelm (1837-1931), who composed the first Norwegian symphony, and Halfdan Kjerulf, who was valued for his choral songs, romances and piano music. In Trondheim, Ole Andreas Lindeman (1769-1857) became the ancestor of a musician dynasty, whose most important member, his son Ludvig Mathias Lindeman, was organist, educator and folk song collector. Edvard Grieg became one of the most representative and beloved composers of national romanticism, whose original harmonics had great significance for the development of music in the late 1800’s, not least among the Impressionists. At the same time as him was Johan Svendsen, whose talent as a conductor got in the way of a significant symphonic composer company, and Johan Selmer (1844-1910). After Grieg, Chr. Sinding the position as Norway’s leading composer, and Johan Halvorsen worked just like Svendsen as composer and conductor. Where Gerhard Schjelderup (1859-1933) and Hjalmar Borgstrøm (1864-1925) were close to German music, Alf Hurum, Pauline Hall (1890-1969) and Arvid Kleven (1899-1929) came under the influence of French Impressionism.

Eivind Groven (1901-1977) and Geirr Tveitt (1908-1981) continued the national line with music based on a thorough study of Norwegian folk music, while less pronounced national elements are found combined with international stylistic features in David Monrad Johansen, Ludvig Irgens Jensen and Bjarne Brustad (1895-1978). After World War II, the long-isolated pioneer of atonality in Norway, Fartein Valen, achieved international recognition, and together with Harald Sæverud and Klaus Egge, he drew modern Norwegian music in the mid-1900’s. At the same time, Knut Nystedt and Egil Hovland emerged as representative younger figures in Norwegian music life, not least in church music, and Finn Mortensen showed more challenging tendencies. Most radically experimental was Arne Nordheim, who is still a dominant personality in Norwegian music life.

After Nordheim, Olav Anton Thommessen (b. 1946) and Lasse Thoresen (b. 1949) in particular have asserted themselves both as composers and as communicators; both are professors at the Norwegian Academy of Music, and in 2010 Lasse Thoresen received the Nordic Council Music Prize. The generation of younger composers includes especially Rolf Wallin (b. 1957), who received the Nordic Council Music Prize in 1997, Asbjørn Schaatun (b. 1961), Åse Hedstrøm (b. 1950) and Cecilie Ore (b. 1954).

Norway – film

Norwegian film production has played a rather peripheral role in Norwegian culture, but a few internationally oriented successes have strengthened the reputation since the mid-1980’s. In the limited production from the first Norwegian feature film in 1907 and until the 1930’s, the most important current was the national romantic depictions of folk life, eg Carl Th. Dreyer’s Glomdalsbruden (1926) and Tancred Ibsen’s Guest Baardsen (1939, Landstrygernes Konge).

The post-war period offered pathetic realism in the form of occupation-time dramas such as Arne Skouens (1913-2003) Ni liv (1957), but also folk comedies and literary films such as Astrid Henning-Jensen’s Kranes confectionery (1951). Inspired by contemporary “new waves” in European film was, for example, Pål Løkkeberg’s (1934-98) Liv (1967).

An improvement in state support for film production led in the 1970’s and 1980’s to socially engaged films with elements of feminism such as Anja Breien’s Wives (1975), apocalyptic satire such as Svend Wams (b. 1946) and Petter Vennerød’s (b. 1948) Det tause majority (1977) and social realism as Sølve Skagen’s (b. 1945) Hard asphalt (1986).

A special position was taken by the puppet film director Ivo Caprino (1920-2001).

Recent Norwegian films include the wilderness dramas Orion’s Belt (1985), directed by Ola Solum (b. 1943), and The Wizard (1987, The Pathfinder), directed by Nils Gaup (b. 1955), and Berit Nesheims (b. 1945). romantic everyday comedy Frida – with the heart in hand (1991) and Pål Sletaunes (b. 1960) thriller The Messenger (1997).

Most recently, films such as Peter Næss ‘(b. 1960) Elling (2001), Knut Erik Jensens (b. 1940) Heftig og begeistret (2001), a documentary about a male choir, and Bent Hamers’ (b. 1956) bizarre comedy Hymns from the kitchen (2003) attracted international attention, and Erik Poppes (b. 1960) Oslo mosaic Hawaii, Oslo (2004) was a big hit in Norway.

All cinema activities in Norway have been municipally managed since 1913, and film production has since 1932 been dominated by the public Norsk Film A/S. In 1997, the country’s first film school was established in Lillehammer.

Norway – sports

Norway has created remarkable results in winter sports; at the Winter Olympics, the country has thus won a total of 329 medals, of which 118 of gold (2015). Famous was figure skater Sonja Henie, who won the Olympics three times (1928-36) and the World Cup ten times (1927-36). In the 1990’s, Bjørn Dæhlie dominated the cross-country disciplines as the most gold-winning athlete so far at the Winter Olympics (eight gold medals), while the alpine skier Kjetil André Aamodt in 2006 broke a record in his discipline by winning his eighth medal. Norway has twice hosted the Winter Games (Oslo 1952 and Lillehammer 1994). See also Holmenkollrennene.

Norwegian women were among the first to break down some of the gender differences in elite sports; Among other things, was Grete Waitz as nidobbelt winner of the New York Marathon a symbol of women’s entry in elite sport. In women’s handball and football, the country has won the European Championships and the World Cup. 1965-85, especially state and tip funds created fertile ground for an unprecedented activity and membership in Norwegian sports.

Norway – kitchen

With Norway’s very long coastline and the largest part of the population living by the coast, fish has always been an essential part of Norwegian cuisine. There are many species, but for everyday use, fish are especially used within the herring and cod families. Herring is eaten fresh or salted. In late winter, the cod is often served cooked with cod roe and liver, while a typical dish at Christmas time is lutefisk, which is dried cod treated with a strong base, lyeed, and then diluted and boiled. It is also common with boiled, smoked cod, while smoked and dug salmon and halibut are considered party food. The export of stockfish and clipfish to Catholic countries has left its mark on Norwegian cooking, as the exporters brought home Spanish recipes for clipfish,bacalao. A frequent everyday dish is fried or boiled fish mince.

The natural basis of agriculture is often barren, so it is especially animal agricultural products that are supplied. The milk is frequently processed into cheese, and the whey again into the brown whey cheese. Commonly, it is also eating sour cream, broaching, or to boil for broaching this porridge that can be eaten together with the dried and cured meats, spekemat. Apart from potatoes and carrots, vegetables are only to a lesser extent included in traditional cuisine; however, kohlrabi and white cabbage are not infrequently used, the latter eg cooked with mutton, sheep in cabbage.

From the mountain you can get reindeer and grouse as well as cranberries and cloudberries used as dessert. In food made from flour can be mentioned the very thin flatbread as well as waffles.

Norway Education

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