ABSTRACT [DK]

Daniel Henschen
I balance med naturen Et bæredygtighedsbegreb i den danske livsreformbevægelse 1890-1930

I den såkaldte livsreformbevægelse (ca. 1890 til ca. 1935) var bæredygtighed med naturen et eksistentielt spørgsmål for menneskeheden ligesom i nutidens klima- og miljødebat. Begreberne var ikke fuldstændig identiske: I stedet for bæredygtighed talte man om ’balance’, og ’natur’ blev primært forstået som menneskets oprindelige tilstand. Men ligesom i nutiden var bevægelsen en reaktion på det moderne, industrialiserede og urbaniserede samfund. Voksende udbredelse af nervelidelser var ét symptom på et unaturligt liv, som gennem tiltagende degeneration ville føre til hele menneskehedens undergang. Svaret var at genskabe balancen. Gennem individuelle handlinger såsom at spise vegetarisk, dyrke idræt og lade kroppen få adgang til sol, vand og luft lagde man grunden til et naturligt samfund i balance.


ABSTRACT [UK]

Daniel Henschen
In Balance with Nature: A Concept of Sustainability in the Danish Life-Reform Movement 1890-1930

In the so-called life-reform movement (approx. 1890 to approx. 1935), sustainability with nature was an existential issue for humanity, just as in today’s climate and environmental debate. The concepts were not completely identical: instead of sustainability, they talked about ’balance’, and ’nature’ was primarily understood as the original state of man. But like today, the movement was a reaction to a modern, industrialized and urbanized society. The growing prevalence of nerve disorders was one symptom of an unnatural life which, through increasing degeneration, would lead to the downfall of all mankind. The answer was to restore balance. Through individual actions such as eating vegetarian, practicing gymnastics and letting the body have access to sun, water and air, the foundation was laid for a natural society in balance.