Germanic Languages | Scandinavian Culture: Multiethnic North
K506 | 25722 | G. May

Topics in Scandinavian Culture: The Multiethnic North (3 cr.)

This class meets second eight weeks. It is taught in English.
The class meets with GER-K 350, WEUR-W 406 and WEUR-W 605.

Since the 1970's there has been a tremendous change in the ethnic
landscapes of the Scandinavian societies as they opened to political
and economic refugees from various parts of the world. The steady
influx of immigrants gradually transformed these traditionally
single-ethnic societies into vibrant multi-cultural entities.
Numerous literary works, films and musical pieces created by
immigrant authors have appeared in the past 20-30 years reshaping
dramatically and irreversibly the way Scandinavia comprehends and
relates to belonging, otherness, ethnic identity and nationality.
The new "immigrant", "transnational", "world" literature, film and
music tell stories of migration and exile, split identity,
bilingualism and loneliness, but also recount the intoxicating
experience of gaining freedom, and emphasize the appreciation of
creative challenge and cultural enrichment.

This course will approach Scandinavian culture through the exciting
lens of the immigrant eye. How is Scandinavia today illuminated by
immigrant tales? How does the "host culture" respond and cope with
challenges posited by the "newcomers"? This is one of the most
exciting angles from which Scandinavia can be studied today. It
relates further to our experience as citizens of a
global, "transnational" world in need of more understanding.

The final grade will be based on three response papers on the texts
and films, a final exam, a final paper, regular class attendance,
and participation in the class discussions.


A Course Reader