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Domestic SecretsWomen and Property in Sweden, 1600-1857$
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Maria Agren

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780807833209

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: July 2014

DOI: 10.5149/9780807898451_agren

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Bankruptcy & the Emergence of a New Public Sphere

Bankruptcy & the Emergence of a New Public Sphere

(p.140) ((5)) Bankruptcy & the Emergence of a New Public Sphere
Domestic Secrets

Maria Ågren

University of North Carolina Press

This chapter describes how the importance of public opinion for political life is commonly accepted for the nineteenth century. A recent study has shown that public opinion was a vital factor in Swedish political life as early as the 1760s, but even before this decade, public opinion had acquired a crucial role in the economic and legal spheres. People who were dissatisfied with the outcome of litigation turned to the public as a sort of appeals court, asking it to listen to their version and to find in their favor. Although the zeal to publish one's legal documents reached a peak in the 1770s, legal documents were published and spread as early as in the 1740s. With their combined focus on private matters and legal principles, the publications created a new form of public discourse.

Keywords:   public opinion, political life, legal spheres, litigation, appeals court, public discourse

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