Does the Nordic Region Speak with a FORKED Tongue?

The Queen of Denmark, the Government Minister and others give their views on the Nordic language community

image of Does the Nordic Region Speak with a FORKED Tongue?

Why is it impossible to talk Swedish while queuing for a hamburger on a Friday night in Helsinki without getting into a fight, despite Swedish being an official language in Finland? The Queen of Denmark, the Government Minister, the Nobel Prize winner and the young editorinchief all have an intense relationship with language. In this book, they – along with a number of other people with a keen interest in language – talk about how language has shaped their lives, both private and professional. Language affects people – it engages and provokes. And power lies in language. Icelanders and Finns only have access to translated and interpreted material if they have not learned a Scandinavian language. Does the way we handle language in Nordic collaboration mean that we are creating a democratic deficit? How are we affected by tradition on the one hand and by the accelerating change brought about by globalisation on the other? Is it a question of generational boundaries? Would young people in Nordic countries rather speak English than Norwegian? These are some of the issues touched upon in this book. The author is a former journalist in the Swedish media world and has previously been Head of Communications at the Nordic Council of Ministers and the Nordic Council.

English Finnish, Swedish


World languages find a home in Iceland

“There’s no such thing as a small language. All languages are big in their home countries.” This is the view of AUÐUR HAUKSDÓTTIR, director of the Vigdís Finnbogadóttir Institute of Foreign Languages in Iceland, which has recently received UNESCO approval to set up an international language centre. The institute is named after the former Icelandic president, Vigdís Finnbogadóttir, who throughout his life fought for linguistic and cultural diversity in the world and also promoted the use of Nordic languages in various situations. This institute conducts in-depth research into language, culture, language teaching and translation – all with the aim of promoting language skills and increasing awareness of the communicative and cultural functions of language.

English Finnish, Swedish

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