Mikael Alm

Professor at Department of History

Email:
Mikael.Alm[AT-sign]hist.uu.se
Telephone:
+4618-471 1524
Visiting address:
Engelska parken, Thunbergsvägen 3 A

Postal address:
Box 628
751 26 UPPSALA

Short presentation

Senior Lecturer in history, Programme Director of the master programme Early Modern Studies, Research Director of the node Early Modern Cultural History. Liaison Officer for the Matariki Humanities Network. Researching on political and social culture during the age of revolutions. Presently working on the project "Making a Difference: Sartorial Practices and Social Order in Early Modern Europe".

BA Uppsala University 1996, MA Uppsala University 1997, Dr. phil. Uppsala University 2002, Docent Uppsala University 2012.

Programme Director for Early Modern Studies (EMS)

Director of Research for Early Modern Cultural History

In his research, Mikael Alm has focused on questions of power, hierarchies, and the ways in which social and political relationships are expressed, shaped and legitimised. The main focal point has been on the political and social culture of late 18th- and early 19th century. He is currently working with a project on sartorial practices for social differentiation in eighteenth century Sweden. Throughout his work runs an interest in empirical sources, schools of theory and methodologial solutions. The theoretical interest has primarily been focused on the field of cultural history and analytical concepts such as culture, languages and discourse. Methodologically, Alm has, alongside traditionally historical text-sources, worked extensively with non-written sources (such as medals, monuments, dress, ceremonies et cetera) through iconographic, ritual and spatial analysis.

Alm teaches on all academic levels, and is pedagogically active in a broad sense – from lectures and seminars on the A-level to working seminars on the research process and the craft of the historian on master and PhD-level. Lately, he has been particularly engaged at the master level, as Programme Director of the international Master Programme in Early Modern Studies, and as Research Director of the Research Node Early Modern Cultural History (which is presently engaging some 30 master and PhD students from the disciplines History, Art history, Textile studies and Musicology. In 2007, he was awarded the Uppsala University Pedagogical Prize, and since 2010, he is a member of the assessing board of that prize.

Alm interacts extensively in media with historical storytelling and expertise, from radio and newspapers via SVT and TV4 to the british BBC.

Keywords of main research area: power, royalty, legitimacy, 18th century, image-making, language, discourse, rhetoric, symbols, ceremony, visualisation, public sphere.

This paragraph is not available in English, therefore the Swedish version is shown.

Mänskliga samhällen är i grunden ojämlika. Politiskt har somliga mer makt än andra, ekonomiskt är somliga rikare än andra, socialt anses somliga högre och ädlare än andra. I min forskning intresserar jag mig för sådana maktrelationer och hur de har uttryckts och rättfärdigats. Jag har specifikt intresserat mig för den period som i europeisk historia kallas revolutionernas tidsålder: perioden från 1700-talets mitt till 1800-talets början. Det var en omvälvande tid: en brytningstid då det gamla Europa som formats och utvecklats sedan medeltiden blev det moderna Europa som vi ser under 1800- och 1900-talet. Tidens maktrelationer var i högsta grad del av omvandlingarna. Politiskt följdes enväldiga kungar av demokratier, ekonomiskt följdes agrara ekonomier av industriella, och socialt följdes ståndssamhällen av klassamhällen.

Ifråga om de politiska aspekterna ägnade jag mig länge åt de gustavianska kungarnas försök att rättfärdiga sitt maktinnehav, och den bernadotteska monarkins motsvarande försök efter enväldets fall 1809. På senare tid har jag intresserat mig mer för de sociala aspekterna. Min senaste publikation, Sartorial Practices and Social Order in Eighteenth-Century Sweden: Fashioning Difference (Routledge, 2021), behandlar kläders roll i manifestationen av social status i en tid när synen på olikhet och hierarkier var stadd i förändring. I mitt nu pågående projekt, A Year at Court: Servants, Courtiers, and Social Order in Eighteenth-Century Stockholm, fortsätter jag studiet av sociala relationer och social interaktion i 1700-talets Sverige. Jag leder även projektet Gustav's Hand: Digitisation, Digital Enhancement, and Dissemination of the Gustavian Collection (infrastruktur, RJ), som syftar till att digitalisera Gustav III:s privata arkiv.

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Mikael Alm