|dc.description.abstract||This study sets out to explore the virtues of a possible Norwegian warrior culture. Examining military journals, Army Field Manuals, doctrines and even fictional literary sources from the turn of the last two centuries, the analysis identifies a number of main currents in Norwegian ideas on war and warfare. By comparing military culture at the national level with the individual warrior level in the Norwegian Armed Forces, the study finds that around 1900, the military culture was heavily influenced by the common political and ideological currents in Europe, such as nationalism, militarism, Social Darwinism, war theology and the cult of the offensive, as well as Michael Howard’s concept of bellicism. Built on national ideology, the warrior subculture reflected «the hard values of the battlefield».
A hundred years later, military culture has been rocked by tremendous social and political changes. Replacing nationalism with individualism and humanism, the overall cultural and ideological arguments for waging war have ceased referring to the fatherland and come to be legitimized by the Universal Human Rights, reflecting the increase in Norwegian troop contributions to multinational operations from the 1990ies onwards. Even so, the Norwegian Army’s warrior subculture remains relatively unchanged, as it continues to reflect the virtues that are still essential to success on the battlefield. Key findings suggest that the present warrior subculture is a result of the functional imperative fully in line with the ancient warrior cultures.||nb_NO