Politeness in Denmark: Some thoughts on Danish etiquette

“Is there politeness in Denmark?” That was the question I was recently invited on a national TV show to discuss. The implication was that I was supposed to say that Danes were not at all polite, because effusive praise and cheerful agreement make for a rather dull TV show. But Danes are not impolite. They have their own version of courteous behaviour, which is based on reinforcing aspects of their culture that they care about.