Claus Corneliussen

Doctor Heerfordt, the Nordic Union, and the United States of Europe

The larger framework for this PhD-thesis is ideas for Nordic and European unification in the inter war period. More concrete, I am investigating the rather extensive plans suggested by the Danish ophthalmologist, Doctor C.F. Heerfordt, for a Nordic neutral defence community during the First World War and for the United States of Europe between the two World Wars.

The guiding questions around with the thesis will be focused are: What was the main content of and contemporary reaction to Doctor Heerfordt's plans for the Nordic Defence Community and later for the United States of Europe and what was the quantity and quality of his network of contact persons?

Despite the fact that Heerfordt never succeeded in realising neither his Nordic nor his European projects, he was part of an important early group of more concrete private thinkers or political entrepreneurs preparing the soil for the political integration process taking place after Second World War among both the Nordic and the European countries. The present study on one of the least known members of this rather large group of inter war European thinkers therefore can be conceptualised as a small - but nevertheless essential - brick in a much larger puzzle.