It's official: Hygge part of new Denmark Canon - The Post

It’s official: Hygge part of new Denmark Canon

Nation unveils ten values it wants to be identified with going forward

What it’s all about: flags, tolerance and equality (photo: Stefano Bolognini)
December 13th, 2016 10:59 am| by Christian W

Following a nationwide survey, Denmark has released a new canon that indicates which values the nation wants to be identified with going forward.

The Denmark Canon, which was established by the former culture minister, Bertel Haarder, includes ten values that include equality, freedom and … of course … ‘hygge’!

“The Denmark Canon has been established during a time when there is growing concern about the future – many people are uncertain about our common value foundation,” said Haarder.

“The ten values that people have now chosen are an expression of the most important current and future societal values: our common cultural DNA. And it’s a step towards a more clear vision for our culture, which I believe is essential for the bonds that hold Danish society together.”

READ MORE: Hygge is ‘the link’ to Danish happiness, claims new book out today

Bertel’s brainchild
The canon, which was launched by Haarder in June, received 2,425 proposals from citizens, students, clubs, politicians, associations, organisations and culture personalities.

Six curators then narrowed down the list to 20 values that over 320,000 Danes voted on.


The ten values that make up Denmark Canon are:

Welfare society: in Denmark’s welfare society, citizens enjoy a high level of protection against social and physical risk and benefit from a number of public advantages

Freedom: freedom is the cornerstone value of Denmark’s democracy. As per Western tradition, the freedom of the people is intertwined with the freedom of the individual

Trust: the Danish culture of trust builds on an expectation that one’s fellow citizens and public institutions are trustworthy

Equality in the eyes of the law: Denmark is often ranked in the top of international indexes regarding trust and low corruption

Gender equality: Danish society is built on an equality between the sexes, which means that men and women should have the same rights and opportunities

The Danish language: Danish is the mother tongue for over 90 percent of the population in Denmark. Language is not just a tool for communication, but a banner of culture

Associations and volunteering: associations make up the foundation of how to organise communities across Denmark

Liberality: liberality builds on a premise that all people have a right to decide over their own lives. To convey liberality is to have an open-minded and tolerant attitude and mindset

Hygge: hygge is considered a special way to be together in relaxed conditions. Hygge has its own word and many contend it cannot be translated.

The Christian cultural heritage: Christianity’s concept concerning charity and Protestant thoughts about the importance of work, personal responsibility and all humans being equal in the eyes of God has left its mark on modern Denmark.