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In the latest episode of our Sweden in Focus podcast, host Paul O’Mahony is joined by regular panelists Becky Waterton, Richard Orange and James Savage, as well as guest Jonas Engman, ethnologist and curator at Nordiska Museet and an expert on Swedish traditions.
This week our columnist David Crouch wrote an excellent article about Sweden's property market slump. We discuss how property woes and rising prices are presenting problems for Sweden's inhabitants this winter.
We also talk about a new report from Sweden's parliamentary ombudsman criticising long waiting times at the migration agency. But will it make any difference?
Twice the Sweden Democrats were in the news this week over moves to block cultural events: a reading event for children hosted by two drag queens, and a traditional Lucia procession fronted by a person who identifies as non-binary. Why are the Sweden Democrats preoccupied with issues surrounding gender identity, and should we be worried when they intervene like this?
We have an interview with Étienne de Gonneville, France's ambassador to Sweden, about the makeup of the French community in Sweden, how a bilateral agreement is strengthening ties between the two countries, and his own reflections on life in Sweden.
For our main topic this week we enlist the help of Jonas Engman to answer questions on everything from why Swedes watch Donald Duck every Christmas to the story behind the ubiquitous straw goats. Don't miss it: his answers are truly fascinating.
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