18 marraskuuta 2019

Blog Anniversary & About Foreign Languages

My blog friend Jesh asked about my language skills, and she thought that Russian is widely spoken in Finland. That is not the case! Therefore I thought to write a bit about the language dispute Finnish vs Swedish and the foreign languages spoken here.

Finland is a bilingual country, official languages being Finnish, Swedish and Sami. The most common foreign language spoken is English, not Russian! Every child knows English and in international companies it is the corporate’s language. In mid 1800s la crème de la crème of our society were all Swedish speaking. Finnish speakers have felt always a bit underdogs with them and there is a long history of language disputes. As a mother tongue Swedish is spoken mostly on coastal areas and archipelagos. To understand this dispute you have to know a bit of our history. Wikipedia helps:

The Language Strife was a major conflict in mid-19th century Finland. Finland had once been under Swedish rule and Swedish (with some Latin) was the language of administration and education. Finnish was considered by the upper classes to be a "language of peasants”. As a result of the Finnish War, Sweden ceded Finland to Russia in 1809 and Finland became the autonomous Grand Duchy of Finland. Under Russian rule Swedish continued to be the only official language. The dispute was considered to have officially ended when Finnish gained official language status in 1923 and became equal to the Swedish language. 

But the strife continues! Both languages are mandatory at school but many Finnish speakers are against this. We have a lot immigrants from Russia and Estonia, but Finns don’t speak Russian. I found a statistic where you can see the situation. Englanti = English, Ruotsi = Swedish, Saksa = German, Ranska = French, Venäjä = Russian, Espanja = Spanish.

At school I  have studied English, Swedish, French and German, later on Spanish. I have forgotten all my French, German is a bit better. I read fluently German, but speaking and writing are more difficult. I have put shame aside and write in English and even in German, though I make many mistakes. But the most important thing is to get understood and communicate. I find it great that while blogging I can practise languages - and the brain! I started blogging four years ago, in the autumn of 2015 and slowly changed my blog’s official language into English, because most of my blog friends come from abroad. Thank you for your interesting posts and your friendship ❤︎

  No more Swedish flag colors, but blue & white :)
We celebrate our 102nd Independence Day on December the 6th. A blue-white post later.
Own language is so important to every nation. In the years of wild dispute 
Adolf Ivar Arwidsson (1791-1858) said:

We are no longer Swedes, we do not want to become Russians, 
so let us be Finns!

We have stunning Finnish writers whose works are being translated into other languages, too.


#all seasons   #der natur donnerstag   #digitalart dienstag   #foto-tunes   #gartenglück    
#saturday’s critters   # t in die neue woche   #the weekend roundup   #uudet värikollaasit   #wandering camera   #willy-nilly   #watw 

27 kommenttia:

  1. Dear riitta,
    I think it's very good that you're growing up so multilingual.
    Nevertheless, I am also of the opinion that the national language is still the most important. Even if, for example, the official language is a different one.
    Your collages are once again beautiful.
    Have a nice beginning of the week
    heartily moni

  2. Thank you so much for the information about languages in Finland. I had no idea. On the other hand, I do so admire your talent
    Not for learning new languages. You are truly gifted. Your collages are gorgeous!!

    1. We are such a small nation, only 5,5 millions. In order to communicate in the world, we have to study languages.

  3. ...Riitta, such gorgeous images to go along with this history lesson.

  4. Hello, happy blog anniversary! It is awesome to learn so many languages. Your photos are just beautiful, lovely post. Enjoy your day, wishing you a happy new week!

    1. Thank you Eileen! We have to study languages, we are so few.

  5. Thanks for sharing this interesting post about languages.
    Happy blogging anniversary and thank you for your company!
    All the best!

  6. I certainly learned a lot from your post. Until today, I thought Finnish was the official language. It wasn't until a few months ago (from a movie) that I realized the proximity of Finland and Russia. My world history and geography lessons were sorely lacking growing up. No excuses for that now. Good cheer to you!

    1. No wonder, because you live so far away from Finland. We are such a small country, people don't know much about us outside Europe. Cheers!

  7. Your photos are beautiful and happy blog anniversary! Thank you for sharing the information on languages. I wish we were taught more than one language while in the lower grades at school. Only English was taught and them we got a choice of one other language. Only some took more than that.

  8. Thank you for sharing this interesting history! And your English skills are fantastic! I wish I spoke more than one language. It may be different now, but when I was in school, we were not introduced to other languages until junior high school (age 13 or 14). It is too late. Other languages need to be introduced when children are younger in my opinion. I took German in high school. I can read a bit of German, but not well.

    Happy Blogiversary!


  9. Thank you so much for explaining this about the languages! How awesome to speak more than one language too. I have tried learning other languages but it is SO difficult! I'm so happy we are blog buddies! I learn so much from you! Hugs!

  10. Yo solo hablo español y me encantaría haber aprendido otros idiomas. Un abrazo y felicidades.

  11. Ritta - congratulations on your blogging anniversary! I am always impressed by people who know more than two languages - I am fairly fluent in Spanish, having worked in Mexico for three years. After an immersion like that, it sticks with you! Your collages are a delicate combination of colors and textures - truly delightful! Thanks for linking to Mosaic Monday!

  12. So, the tab already longer "open" I have "worked through" all the other blogs before, because I wanted to read this calmly.

    I find it very interesting, and I was not familiar with Swedish. However, I can understand the relation to Russia and the language. To my ears, Finnish also sounds a bit like that, of the kind, the "hardness" of the language itself. For me always interesting to hear all the different languages here, and also got to know Finns I could talk to them in English.

    For some years now the English language has been compulsory in schools, which I think is a good thing so that young people all over the world can get along better.



  13. This is very interesting,Riitta. I didn't know there were two official languages in Finland.
    I'm from Spain, so if you need to practice your Spanish let me know ;)

  14. Congrats on your blogging anniversary! I really had no idea the languages in your country were such a contention! The things I learn from blogging :)

    I'm happy to see your link at 'My Corner of the World' this week!

    My Corner of the World

  15. Saame on virallinen kieli Suomessa..

    1. Kiitos, korjaan virheeni. Kumma kun se ei googlatessa tule esiin.

  16. This is very interesting to me Riitta. As you know, our grandchildren (gs and his wife) live in Finland. He is going to classes to learn the language and history. I am proud of him. Thank you for sharing this and happy anniversary! .. I have learned so much from you (the best part of blogging ). And I am grateful that you write in English, because I am not as smart as my grandson!

  17. It's so sad that Finland was forced to speak other languages for so long. I wish I were multi-lingual like you. I found learning a foreign language very hard - in school, I studied French (only know a few words) and German (same with German) and I lived around Spanish speaking people for decades and know a few words. I'm illiterate in most languages. sad!

  18. You are so lucky to be able to speak so many languages (even if not fluently). I took a few years of German and I'm now working on French. French is so hard! I do think it's interesting that most people I've spoken to that have taken French don't seem to keep it.

    With Love,

  19. Happy Blog-Anniversary and thank you for all those really interesting informations about your Country!
    I love to visit you and your blog and I am looking forward für many more years here together!
    Wishing you a great rest of the week,
    Love and hugs, Claudia xo

  20. thank you for this interesting post! I think it's so good to speak several languages. my english is bad because I only learned it in school many years ago, but I'll try for improving it. but sometimes I have to write in german... herzlichen glückwunsch zum bloggeburtstag!
    ♥ mano

  21. Thanks for sharing the lingual history of Finland. I love that you learned so many in school. I have lost most of my languages too due to lack of practice. Perhaps like you, I should start writing in German again. Lovely photos, Riitta!! The misty morning(?) photo is so beautiful! Happy Blog Anniversary! I am so glad to have met you.



Kiitos kommentistasi - Thank you for your comment ♥ All comments containing an advertising link shall be removed.

Kommentoimalla HYVÄKSYT, että Google kerää sinusta määrättyjä tietoja. Mitä ne ovat, löytyy sivulta Yksityisyydensuoja sekä Googlen sivulta.