Arne Jarrick

Professor of History at Stockholm University (SU)

CV summary

Since 1997 Arne Jarrick is a professor of history at Stockholm University (SU). He received his PhD in Economic History from SU in 1985. He has held many leading positions in the national as well as the international research funding system, such as Secretary General for the Humanities and Social Sciences at the Swedish Research Council (VR, 2007-2012), the scientific board and research council of Wenner-gren foundations (2013-), the board of HERA and Norface (2007-2012), etc. He is a member and was until recently second vice-president of The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences and is a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, Antiquities and History.

=> picture by Marcus Marcetic

Research interests:
Up to year 2000 he was mainly pre-occupied with early modern history of collective attitudes/behavior and processes of civilization among ordinary people (also called history of mentalities), such as religion, criminality, sex, suicide and the impact of the Enlightenment. A side interest has been theoretical and epistemological issues and a critique of post-modernism. Since year 2000 his major interest is cultural dynamics. He was one of the founders of the Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution. As an outflow of that interest he has run a large-scale study of the global history of 4 000 years of law-making. He is presently planning a historical and experimental study on resistance to group pressure. He has large experience of extensive and quantifying work with series of unwritten as well as published source materials. He has recently been engaged in research on the global conditions of Humanities research (Humanities World Report, London: Palgrave Mc Millan, co-authored with Poul Holm and Dominic Scott).

Media presence:
​Jarrick has a longstanding and continuous presence in mainstream media, both by participating in public debates and by popularizing research through public lectures, books, TV and radio.  One example is ca 30 so called quarterly seminars on SSH research (2006-2012), organized by VR and broadcasted many times in the so called knowledge channel on TV.

​Jarrick’s publication list contains 201 numbers, whereof 10 are monographs and seven are edited volumes (six available in English). 15 most important non-Swedish publications
1. “Spontaneous processes of civilization: the Swedish case” (co-author Johan Söderberg), Ethnologia Europaea 23:1 (1993)
2. „Kulturen der Sexualität im Schweden der Frühen Neuzeit“, Historische Anthropologie 2:3 (1994)
3. „Halbwegs zwischen Materialismus und Konstruktivismus --  Über Mentaliteten und soziale Konstruktionen innerhalb der Geschichtsforschung“, in Historie und Eigen-Sinn. Festshcrift für Jan Peters zum 65. Geburtstag (eds. Axel Lubinski m fl), Weimar 1997
4. Back to Modern Reason: Johan Hjerpe and other petit bourgeois in Stockholm in the Age of Enlightenment, Liverpool UP: Liverpool 1999
5. Only Human. On the History of Conceptions of Man, editor,  Acta Universitatis Stockholmiensis (editor; Stockholm studies in history 61): Stockholm 2000
6. “To be or not to be ... human. On the psychological history of religious and existential attitudes to suicide”, in Jacob Belzen (ed.), Aspects in Context: Studies in the History of Psychology of Religion, Amsterdam: Rodopi 2000 
7. “Textual Analysis in the Historiography of Mentalities -- Its External and Internal Problem of Representativity”, in Dag Prawitz (eds.), Meaning and Interpretation, Stockholm 2002
8. “Of course, there was en Enlightenment in Sweden!”, in  Enrique Martínez Cruz m,fl. (red.), Dos Monarquías encla Europa de la Ilustración: Carlos III de Espana y Gustavo III de Suecia, Madrid 2003
9. “The Destiny of the Need to be Needed”, in Modernity and its Discontents (ed. Petteri Pietikainen), Stockholm 2005
10. The Need to be Needed: An Essay on Humankind, Culture and World History, Lambert Academic Publishing: Saarbrücken 2010
11. “Why does human culture increase exponentially?” (with Magnus Enquist, Stefano Ghirlanda and Carl-Adam Wachtmeister), Theoretical Population Biology 74 (2008)
12. “The Apostles of Linnaeus and the Economy of Nature”, Baltic worlds nr 1 2013
13. The Humanities World Report (co-authored together with Holm, Poul, and Scott, Dominic), London: Palgrave Mc Millan 2015
14. Methods in Global History A Critical Approach, editor (together with Janken Myrdal and Maria Wallenberg Bondesson), Lund: Nordic Academic Press
15. The Dynamics of Law-Making: A World History (co-authored with Maria Wallenberg Bondesson), forthcoming in September 2018


  • UNESCO. United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
  • The Catalan Association of Public Universities (ACUP)

Sponsored by

  • Generalitat de Catalunya. Ministry of Business and Employment. Department of Research and Universities
  • Generalitat de Catalunya. Ministry for Foreign Action and Open Government