learning swedish for finns!!!

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HENGAMEH
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learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by HENGAMEH » Wed Aug 29, 2012 4:13 pm

are you Finns still forced to learn Swedish language in school? can you tell me why your government make you do that? it is very strange. less than 10% of the nation are Swedish and even if it was more, it is not still a good reason for that.how do you feel about that? are people in Sweden have to learn Finnish too?
in the country i come from, about 30% of people speak Turkish but there is no second official language (Turkish) because of them. in many countries it,s the same.



learning swedish for finns!!!

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Janat
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Janat » Wed Aug 29, 2012 6:03 pm

Yes, we still have to learn Swedish. We have to learn it because officially Finland has two languages, Finnish and Swedish. I don't mind learning Swedish, but I know many people who do. People in Sweden don't have to learn Finnish, because Sweden only has one official language, Swedish.

To get rid of our second official language, some changes to the constitution would have to be made, and it's not an easy nor quick process. Two thirds (or was it five sixths?) of the parliament would have to support the change, otherwise it won't happen.


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Pursuivant
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Pursuivant » Wed Aug 29, 2012 7:17 pm

Что ж, могло быть и хуже, мы могли бы изучать финский язык меньшинства. 8)
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AldenG
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by AldenG » Wed Aug 29, 2012 7:55 pm

HENGAMEH wrote:can you tell me why your government make you do that?
Setting aside (?) the very important question of Swedish-speaking Finns, for a long time Swedish was the language of pan-Nordic political cooperation, of money, and of power. Finland could ill afford to be left out of any of those, especially considering the alternative partner. (That is the point of Pursuivant's clever post.)

Even within Finland, among Finns, there was a time when the money and power were controlled by Swedish-speaking Finns.

I don't know or need to know specifically where you come from, but Nordic countries have a very different attitude toward small differences than many middle eastern and southern european and perhaps eastern european countries seem to have. The Nordic countries are more prone to celebrate and make productive use of their common ground than to exclude and discriminate against their closest geographic and cultural neighbors based on the narcissism of small differences. Certainly there has been some discrimination, too, especially against Finns, but it's not the main principle of inter-Nordic behavior. And anyway it was all the more reason for Finns to have learned Swedish well in years past. (Though the accent alone, regardless of fluency, has been enough to trigger prejudice among those prone to prejudice.) When I lived in Finland my (then but no longer) fluency in Swedish got me appointed to a pan-Nordic committee or two where the working language was Swedish. It wasn't that long ago, but I wonder how much English may have nowadays taken over in such meetings, as my generation and younger have come to power.

As Finland's economy began to rival Sweden's and Finnish companies began buying Swedish companies, there was a shift toward English in Finnish-Swedish commerce, I believe. But I haven't been close to that for a while.

I think pan-Nordic cooperation and the rich benefits it brought to the region in the 1900's should be a model and an example to other parts of the world.
As he persisted, I was obliged to tootle him gently at first and then, seeing no improvement, to trumpet him vigorously with my horn.


Rosamunda
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Rosamunda » Wed Aug 29, 2012 8:33 pm

Swedish is taught as a compulsory second language in junior high schools for students aged 14-16 yrs. Whether or not they decide to learn it is up to them. I'm not even sure it is a compulsory element of the junior high school grade point average (I think there is a pass/fail option in the GPA calculation). So, in reality, the vast majority of Finns do not speak Swedish at all.

My husband maintains that almost every job he has ever had, he got thanks to being able to speak Swedish (he's in finance and Swedish is still quite widely used in banking in the nordics). And some civil service posts still require Swedish (I guess the police force is one).

My only issue is that since Finnish, English and Swedish are compulsory in junior high school, few students have the energy to dive into a fourth language such as Russian or Chinese. And there just isn't the time available in the school week to study four languages in any depth (especially if you are a science/maths student). So relatively few Finns speak Russian fluently, which is a shame since Russia is a major trading partner.


Upphew
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Upphew » Wed Aug 29, 2012 11:28 pm

Rosamunda wrote:And some civil service posts still require Swedish (I guess the police force is one).
s/some/all
Border guards and customs working on eastern border have to show that they can work in Swedish when Russian would make more sense to me... virkamiesruotsi ftw. </sarcasm>
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Pursuivant
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Pursuivant » Thu Aug 30, 2012 9:50 am

To graduate from university/polytechnic (as that gives you a chance to apply for government office) you need to pass the "bureaucrat swedish" test. As they've liberalised the matriculation, some people will be struggling.
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tuulen
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by tuulen » Fri Aug 31, 2012 4:37 am

AldenG wrote:When I lived in Finland my (then but no longer) fluency in Swedish got me appointed to a pan-Nordic committee or two where the working language was Swedish. It wasn't that long ago, but I wonder how much English may have nowadays taken over in such meetings, as my generation and younger have come to power.
In recent years there was an official pan-Nordic meeting of Scandinavians, where Danes, Swedes and Norwegians each spoke in their native language, and then each of their speeches were officially translated into the other two languages, so that all three languages were represented, but when the meeting was over all of the speakers then gathered in the lounge for drinks and they exchanged jokes with each other, in English!


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Pursuivant
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Pursuivant » Fri Aug 31, 2012 12:46 pm

And when Finns, Faroese and Icelanders join up, the language is English.
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interleukin
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by interleukin » Sat Sep 01, 2012 9:24 am

My experience of Nordic meetings is that a Swedish-speaking Finn is chosen/chooses to represent Finland, and fits right in due to similar culture and language. But in the end, the meeting language becomes English because no-one can understand the Danish guy.
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Pursuivant
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Pursuivant » Sat Sep 01, 2012 9:50 am

:lol: That explains why the Nordic politicians have such weird ideas about Finns.
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Upphew
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Upphew » Sat Sep 01, 2012 12:51 pm

Pursuivant wrote::lol: That explains why the Nordic politicians have such weird ideas about Finns.
We should send Hakkarainen then... Halme would have been good too, he did speak Swedish though?
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AldenG
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by AldenG » Sat Sep 01, 2012 5:02 pm

interleukin wrote:But in the end, the meeting language becomes English because no-one can understand the Danish guy.
:lol:

We didn't happen to have a Dane, but that is also my experience of informal assemblies. Churchill (or Wilde. or Shaw. or Rusell. or somebody.) is famously but probably incorrectly reported to have said that America and Britain are two nations separated by a common language. But something along those lines must be even more apt for Sweden and Denmark. Never in the history of human language has so much been understood by so few, or something like that. Or never in the history of human endeavor have so many struggled so valiantly to understand so little.

Swedes and Danes love to imagine they understand each other's conversation. The words sound so familiar (if you can hear the Dane) but somehow they just don't add up. Even Sjöwall and Wahlöö had a few bits about that in one or more of their books.

Honestlly, I've had trouble understand English in Denmark. And I so rarely have trouble understanding any accent in English. Not the Dutch. Not the Southeast Asians. Not the French Canadians. But Denmark is another story. I always got by just fine in Norway with Swedish, though.
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Ukki
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Ukki » Sat Sep 01, 2012 6:10 pm

For the OP: Yes we do.

Swedish is the only language which follows finns throughout the whole educational system. There is no other subject which does that! Finland doesn´t have two official languages as someone claimed but Finland has national languages one of which swedish is. The other two are finnish and saame.

There is no real reason why finns would have to be forced to learn this minority language.

The constitution doesn´t mention anything about it, it says only about rights but what people do not understand is that swedish speaking peoples rights DO NOT mean that finnish speaking people have any obligations to learn swedish. That would be racist.

Even if Finland would be bilingual or even multilingual (like 100 languages) that would not mean that finns have to study compulsory swedish, or any other language. Some people claim that swedish people have "rights to be served" in their own language. That may be but one has to remember that state provides services, not individual people. Do not mix legal characters like state and a person. The burder of service cannot be placed on invidual and their children. My childred will not be ear marked as someones servant.

The compulsory swedish came to finnish school system at the end of the 60´s due to political horse trade. It has nothing to do with constitution. Neither does the state official requirement to speak swedish which came to be the same way.

Both issues, compulsory swedish in schools and state official language requirement, are racist and against human rights. Finns cannot pass their educational system without having a degree in foreign language swedish nor they can act as a official without one. That is simply and purely against finnish speaking peoples human rights. We have to learn and aquire a degree in foreign language just to live and work in our own country. And we should not forget other finns who are born of parents speaking some other language. Russian/finnish speaking citizens have rights too.

Yes, swedish is foreign language for us finns. There are swedish speaking finns in this country but so there are somali speaking finns in this country. One has to understand that there is only one mother tong. All other are foreign, even in they would be recognized by state. (excluding children living in a family where both parents speak different language, they would be bilingual).

I have yet to find a country where majority of people have been subjected so badly by state sponsored ideology (smells a lot like Marxis-Leninism in former east european countries), expecially when one has to consider that Finland is VERY monolingual when compared to other countries in the world. For example, in Finland aproximately 92% of people are finnish speaking as compared to Sweden which has app. 89% of swedish speaking population. Yet Sweden has only swedish as official lanuguage and Finland does not have finnish. Where is the sanity in this?!

Times will change though too and Finland will become a country where there is only one official language, finnish, and some minority languages (swedish, russia, saam, somalia). Like in any real democracy. Untill then Finland is not truly democratic.

We can provide services for our minorities like any other country without force.

Anyone claiming different and thinking current situation is good for swedish speaking people, I have to ask with the words of Doctor Phill McGraw: How´s that working out for you?


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Oombongo
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Re: learning swedish for finns!!!

Post by Oombongo » Sat Sep 01, 2012 7:55 pm

let's all speak Finnigian, so all 4 nordic countries can understand each other. Finland is kinda outcast due to its (current) weird language.
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