The Nordic Theory of Everything: In Search of a Better Life


A Finnish journalist, now a naturalized American citizen, asks Americans to draw on elements of the Nordic way of life to nurture a fairer, happier, more secure, and less stressful society for themselves and their children.

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In The Nordic Theory of Everything, Finnish journalist Anu Partanen (who moved to America in 2008) compares and contrasts life in the United States with life in the Nordic region, focusing on four key relationships — parents and children, men and women, employees and employers, and government and citizens. She debunks criticism that Nordic countries are socialist “nanny states,” revealing instead that it is Americans who are far more enmeshed in unhealthy dependencies than they realize. As Partanen explains step by step, the Nordic approach allows citizens to enjoy more individual freedom and independence than Americans do.

Partanen wants to open Americans’ eyes to how much better things can be — to show her beloved new country what it can learn from her homeland to reinvigorate and fulfill the promise of the American dream — to provide the opportunity to live a healthy, safe, economically secure, upwardly mobile life for everyone. Offering insights, advice, and solutions, The Nordic Theory of Everything makes a convincing argument that we can rebuild our society, rekindle our optimism, and restore true freedom to our relationships and lives.


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