This paper takes as its starting point a question which can be formulated like this: Through reflection and deconstruction, is it at all possible at this time to maintain the idea that landscapes can be read and analysed in a scientific manner?1 It is appropriate to ask this question in the context of the Permanent European Conference for the Study of the Rural Landscape (PECSRL). Throughout the history of this conference, the idea that landscapes can be explained in a way that stands over and above local, national and ethnic understandings has formed an important line of thought. What was sometimes in the 1960s and 1970s referred to as the “modern” school of cultural landscape research was thus based on the idea of cultural landscape studies as an international, comparative science. Here, I deliberately use the word science, not simply the Swedish vetenskap or the German Wissenschaft — but science as in natural science (cf. Schaefer 1953: 236).


Cultural Landscape Rural Landscape Landscape Study Landscape History Historical Geography 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mats Widgren
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Human GeographyStockholm UniversitySweden

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