Sari Nauman

Associate Senior Lecturer

Department of Historical Studies
Visiting address
Renströmsgatan 6
41255 Göteborg
Postal address
Box 200
40530 Göteborg

About Sari Nauman

Docent in history at the University of Gothenburg and Pro Futura Scientia XVII Fellow at Swedish Collegium of Advanced Studies, Riksbankens Jubileumsfond.

My main research interest is situations of uncertainty and insecurity in the early modern period, focusing on the Swedish Empire. I appreciate working with and developing theoretical and methodological tools, and in my research, I continually return to concepts such as trust/control, private/public, migration, stranger, identity, and secrecy. With a background in political science, philosophy, and international relations, I usually work with transdisciplinary methods.

Currently, I am the PI of two projects:

- Outsiders Within: Internally Displaced Persons in Early Modern Europe, funded by SCAS/RJ, 2023-2028. This project confronts the early modern legacy of European Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs). It uncovers the hidden history of these substantial groups who lived on the margins of state formation processes and analyzes how they negotiated belonging and protection with central authorities and local communities. Its main aim is to determine how authorities, communities, and IDPs articulated the responsibility for protection before nation-states and ideas of citizenship were in place. For more information, see

- Humanitarian Great Power? The Local Reception of Refugees in Sweden, 1700-1730, funded by the Swedish Research Council, 2023-2025. When do we take responsibility to protect others? As 20–30.000 Swedish subjects fled Russian troops, advancing in Finland and Sweden’s Baltic provinces during the Great Northern War (1700–1721), the Swedish royal power decreed that these refugees should cross the Baltic Sea and come to Sweden. Based on this decision, scholars have assumed their hospitable reception. But while refugee reception policies were formulated centrally, their implementation and the actual, practical responsibility to protect were local. This project analyzes how local communities and refugees negotiated the refugees’ need for protection with the local communitites’ demands for security. For more information, see

I am also a co-investigator in the following project:

- Baltic Hospitality: Receiving Strangers / Providing Security on the Northern European Littoral, ca. 1000-1900, funded by the Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies (Östersjöstiftelsen) 2019-2021, with Leif Runefelt, Wojtek Jezierski and Christina Reimann. This project analyses the reception and rejection of strangers in coastal areas, focusing on security questions. My case study analyses migratory movements from and within the Swedish realm during the 17th and 18th centuries. The project is hosted by Södertörn University.

Webpage with publications: