Swedish Reactions

Swedish Reactions

Honeymoon is over, the sun sets a little earlier every evening, and the Swedish mood is dipping. And with that, so is your positive, easy-going attitude towards learning Swedish and trying to get more integrated at your Swedish workplace or with your Swedish new...

Is fika a dying phenomenon?

Is fika a dying phenomenon?   A recent article in Business Insider suggests that fika is not what the international hype is suggesting. In fact, Swedes themselves tell of fika as a dying concept, something they do with their grandmother once a year.   Is this true?...

Enough of lagom

Although even hugely accessible sources, like Wikipedia, claim the opposite, most Swedes believe that the word lagom cannot be translated into other languages. There is a huge myth surrounding this little word, it almost has the status of a conceptual national mascot....
Politeness according to Swedes

Politeness according to Swedes

After having lived almost seven years in Scotland, I returned to Sweden in 2008. I was shocked to discover how rude the Swedes are, slamming doors in my face, yawning without covering their mouths, bumping into me without apologising. Later I realised that I was...

How to pronounce the Swedish R

R This is the letter – or more correctly – the sound that is subject to most concern for my students. It shouldn’t be. There are letters, or sounds, that should be given much more attention, and if mispronounced can cause confusion or misunderstanding. To be able to...
Week numbers

Week numbers

If you have worked, studied, rented a cottage, or sent your children to school in Sweden, you must have come across the peculiar use of week numbers instead of conventional calendar dates. That is to say, instead of saying May the 7th, most Swedes would refer to today...