As you know, it’s mandatory these days that the Anglophone world be obsessed by one Scandinavian lifestyle concept or another. In 2016 it was hygge, a Danish word that somehow simultaneously is a) untranslatable and b) means “cosiness” – and which last year was the topic of approximately two billion different coffee-table books (along with a splendid takedown in this newspaper by Charlotte Higgins, from which it should never recover). In 2017, the signs are that the Fashionable Scandinavian Concept will be lagom, a Swedish word meaning just the right amount; not too much, or too little. This moment in history – days before the inauguration of an unstable US president who rode to power on a wave of anger and conspiracy theories – might not seem hospitable to the spirit of moderation. But maybe that’s exactly why we need it.
Moderates are the real tough guys