The topic of this article is how primary school students express ideas about
the ‘origins of the nation’. The study is based on texts written by Swedish
students aged 12–13 about a historical event well embedded in Swedish
national mythology, the rise to power of Swedish ‘founding father’
Gustav Vasa. The analysis is inspired by James V. Wertsch’s concept of
schematic narrative templates. The main finding of the study is that the
students mainly structure their answers along one of two different
narrative templates; either a kind of historical master narrative with
strong foundations in traditional Swedish history culture, or a more
generic story about the founding father as a ruthless or corrupt
politician, which is arguably influenced by presentism.
London & New York: Routledge, 2016.