Denmark – The best place on earth?

Danes only knows two colours : black and white (or maybe rather red and white) : either they see themselves and their country as the center of the world – the best place on earth, or they regard Denmark as a place that has a lack of everything essential and travel around the world searching for the missing parts.

The Garden of Frederiksberg, summer 2003
The Garden of Frederiksberg, summer 2003

In both cases the mentality its often paired with a certain inferiority complex. Denmark is a small and relatively homogeneous country, without big contradictions, socially, economically, politically or culturally. And for about the last 150 years, the official Danish foreign policy has always been to stand behind and with the dominating global powers.

The law of Jante

  1. Don’t think you’re anything special.
  2. Don’t think you’re as much as us.
  3. Don’t think you’re wiser than us.
  4. Don’t convince yourself that you’re better than us.
  5. Don’t think you know more than us.
  6. Don’t think you are more than us.
  7. Don’t think you are good at anything.
  8. Don’t laugh at us.
  9. Don’t think anyone cares about you.
  10. Don’t think you can teach us anything.
  11. Don’t think there’s anything we don’t know about you.

It all means that the ordinary Dane has lived a rather protected and secure life and often regards the outside world with its wars, abnorm rich and poor people, strikes, corruption, big firms, earthquakes, hunger, high crime rates and huge contradictions as a rather scaring place, wondering how people can manage to live (and survive) out there.

Also many Danes carry about the primary mental heritage of the homogeneous society, in Denmark called The jante law.

Rosenborg castle
Rosenborg castle seen from the Kings Garden,Copenhagen, summer 2003

Expect the Danes to meet the foreign visitor with a kind of reserved curiosity, either expecting that the foreigner has arrived to Denmark to get his or her hands on all the nice parts of the best place on earth, or wondering what on earth he is doing there and what is the secret behind the visitors seeming supremacy.

Dont try to tell the Danes that you find that Denmark is a beautiful country. First : They won’t believe you and second: they either already know or completely disagree.

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Published : 3. December 2004 - (Read 644 times)


1 comment at “Denmark – The best place on earth?”

  1. Perth writes: 8. March 2013 - 17:05

    Danish inferiority complex is unbelievable.

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