Better housing for the rural population was an important part ofthe Finnish housing discussion in the 20th century. Between 1938 and 1969, Bostadsföreningen för svenska Finland (The housing association for the Swedish speaking areas of Finland) promoted rational housingfor the Fenno-Swedish minority. The construction of a collective identityfor a minority through dwelling ideals is the main focus of the article.Methods as identity process theory and perspectives on architecture and nationalism are used to interpret the material. Specific questions relate to how modernist architecture became a symbol when constructing an identity for a non-homogeneous minority. The housing association viewed modernist housing as a solution to a political and ideologicalproblem. With efficient homes, Fenno-Swedish farmers were less inclined to sell their homesteads to Finnish speakers and move to the cities, where they were assimilated into the Finnish culture. Mobility wasperceived as a threat to the minority, since it led to a loss of voters in areas of political importance. Modernist architecture combined with aesthetics from the vernacular building tradition were used to make thefarmers proud of their ancestral homes, willing to stay, securing theideological home of the Fenno-Swedes.
- minority nationalism
- housing research