Bo Stråth


Bo Stråth (Curriculum Vitae) was 2007-2014 Finnish Academy Distinguished Professor in Nordic, European and World History and Director of Research at the Department of World Cultures / Centre of Nordic Studies (CENS), University of Helsinki. 1997-2007 he was Professor of Contemporary History at the European University Institute in Florence, and 1991-1996 Professor in History at the University of Gothenburg. He is a member of The Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters.


by | May 21, 1999 | Conferences, Curriculum vitae

On Relationships Between the USA and Europe

European University Institute
Department of History and Civilisation

Conference, Florence 21-22 May 1999

Sala Triaria, Villa Schifanoia

Organiser: John Brewer, Luisa Passerini, Bo Stråth

Friday 21 May, Sala Triaria, Villa Schifanoia

9.30-12.30 Representations and Identitities 
Chair: Luisa Passerini

Silvia Sebastiani (EUI) 
The Changing Features of the Americans in the Eighteenth-Century Britannica

Pierangelo Castagneto (Un. di Genova) 
From Walden to Wilderness. The Making of ‘Anglo-Saxon’ Identity in Nineteenth Century America

Ioanna Laliotou (EUI) 
Visions of the World, Visions of America: Science fiction and Other Transatlantic Utopias at the Turn-of-the-Century

Maurizio Vaudagna (U. di Bari) 
National Revival as a Category in the Public Addresses of Franklin D. Roosevelt and Benito Mussolini

Maurizio Ascari (U. di Bologna) 
Prince Camaralzaman and Princess Badoura Come to Tea: Cosmopolitanism and the European identity in “The Europeans”

Lunch (Sala Rossa, Badia)

14.00 – 16.00 Visual Models 
Chair: Jerry Seigel (NYU)

Flaminia Gennari (EUI) 
Defining the American Art Collector, 1900-1910

Isabelle Engelhardt (EUI) 
The Creation of an ‘Artificial Authentic Place’ – The United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC

Bob Lumley (Un. College, London) 
Between Pop Art and Arte Povera

Coffee Break

16.30 -18.30 Cultural Battlegrounds 
Chair: John Brewer (EUI)

Peter Braunstein (NYU) 
Cities of the Revolution: the International Itinerary of the 1960s Counterculture

Saverio Giovacchini (CUNY) 
The Gap. How André Bazin Became Captain America

Enrica Capussotti (EUI) 
James Dean is like me… American Movies in Italy During the Fifties

Saturday 22 May, Sala Triaria, Villa Schifanoia
9.00 – 11.00 Consumption and Production 
Chair: Molly Nolan

David Randolph (EUI) 
Pausing to Refresh: Creating a Market for Coca-Cola in Sweden

Bent Boel (U. of Aalborg) 
The European Productivity Drive and European Visions of America After World War II

Paulina Bren (NYU) 
Weekend Get-Aways: Recreations of the American Wild West in Czechoslovakia

Gerben Bakker (EUI) 
America’s Master: The Decline of the European Film Industry and the Great War

Coffee Break

11.30 – 13.15 Exchanges 
Chair: Bo Stråth

Gwendolyn Wright (Columbia Un., NY) 
Good Design and “The Good Life”: Cultural Exchange in Post-World War II Domestic Environments

Adam Arvidsson (EUI) 
The Therapy of Consumption, Motivation Research, and the New Italian Housewife, 1958-68

Marie Cronqvist (Un. of Lund) 
Atomic Bombs and “Electric Girls” – Mobilising Culture and Technology in Cold War Sweden

Lunch (Sala Rossa – Badia)

14.30 – 16.00 Final Discussion

For more details on the workshop please contact the conference assistant Silvia Sebastiani (fax: +39-55-4685203 and e-mail:

Transferring/Transforming Production Models. Americanization

Robert Schuman Centre and the Flexibility Project in Cooperation with the Department of History

Workshop organized by Bo Stråth and Jonathan Zeitlin

4 June 1999 in Sala Europa, Villa Schifanoia

Britain in the late 18th century, then the US up to the 1960s, Japan in the 1970s and the 1980s, and, again, the US in the 1990s, are examples widely believed to define a transnational standard of productive efficiency. Like contemporary historians, historical actors disagree sharply about the possibilities and limitations of postwar Americanisation or Japanisation in different national and sectoral settings. Nevertheless, there seems to be a generally growing understanding that translating a specific pattern of production into various national institutional and cultural contexts is a much more complex process than merely applying a prefabricated model. Often, images of a particular model emerge in crises and rethinking of established patterns. In such situations, new alternatives are sought. These images of foreign models to be emulated often say more about the situations in the environments in which they emerge than about the would-be model country. The model to emulate is constructed to meet specific local needs, and is typically transformed in its practical application.

The objective of this workshop — within the framework of the flexibility project — is to discuss the conditions and consequences of this type of cross-cultural transfer. The point of departure is the book Americanisation and Its Limits: Reworking US Technology and Management in Postwar Europe and Japan (forthcoming Oxford U P 1999) edited by Jonathan Zeitlin and Gary Herrigel. The book seeks to develop a new comparative analysis of the attempted transfer and diffusion of American production ideas to postwar Europe and Japan, stressing the creativity and reflexivity of local actors together with the resulting proliferation of hybrid forms and practices. Both of the editors as well as Henrik Glimstedt, who is one of the contributors to the book, will present papers.

9.30 Jonathan Zeitlin: Americanization and Its Limits: Reworking US Technology and Management in Postwar Europe and Japan 
Discussants: Alan Milward and Martin Rhodes


11.30 Henrik Glimstedt: Creative Cross-Fertilization and Uneven Americanization of Swedish Industry: Sources of Innovation in Postwar Motor Vehicles and Electrical Manufacturing
Discussant: Bo Stråth

13.00 Lunch in Sala Bandiera

14.30 Gary Herrigel: American Occupation, Market Order and Democracy: Reconfiguring the Japanese and German Steel Industries after World War II

Discussant: Colin Crouch

The workshop will end around 16.30

Please click the texts to download:

Introduction, Glimstedt, Herrigel, Contents

If you have any problems or questions, please mail:


  • Monographs
  • Anthologies
Creating Community and Ordering the World
A European Memory
A European Memory?
European Solidarities
European Solidarities
Reflections on Europe
Reflections on Europe
The Economy as a Polity
The Economy As a Polity
A European Social Citizenship
A European Social Citizenship?
Representations of Europe and the Nation in Current and Prospective Member States
States and Citizens History Theory Prospects
States and Citizens
The Meaning of Europe
The Meaning of Europe
From the Werner Plan to the EMU
From the Werner Plan to the EMU
Europe and the Other and Europe as the Other
Europe and the Other and Europe as the Other
Myth and Memory in the Construction of Community
Myth and Memory in the Construction of Community
AFTER FULL EMPLOYMENT European Discources on Work and Flexibility
After Full Employment
Enlightenment and Genocide Contradictions of Modernity
Enlightenment and Genocide, Contradictions of Modernity
Department of History and Civilization Nationalism and Modernity EUI Working Papers
Nationalism and Modernity
The Postmodern Challenge Perspectives East and West
The Postmodern Challenge
The Cultural Construction of Norden
The Cultural Construction of Norden
Comparativ Wohnungsbau im Internationalen Vergleich Heft 3-1996
Wohnungsbau im internationalen Vergleich
Language and the Construction of Class Identities
Language and the Construction of Class Identities
Idylle oder Aufbruch
Idylle oder Aufbruch?
Democratisation in Scandinavia in Comparison