T Nation

Calling All Scandinavians


This is a thread for all scandinavian members, extended scandinavians (associated island dwellers and finns) to discuss our heritage and differences. Any others with something meaningful to say can chime in as well.

A question I would like to pose all swedes, danes, icelanders and norwegians is where or how do you see yourself and your nationality as fitting into the larger internationality that is Norden? What is your perception of the neighbouring nations and your perception of Finland?

Do you like to watch rental movies with, say, icelandic or even finnish subtitles while being a swede or norwegian? Just for challenge. Finnish is completely unrelated to these languages though, so does this affect your perception of Finland much? Are you compelled to travel abroad for whatever reason?

Here's my short breakdown of associated countries/self-administered regions:

-Finland: has a strong history of trying to identify with the west and the wider scandinavian sphere, which may come as a surprise to many true scandinavian people. Strong national identity exists independent of such influence.

Ridiculously high swedish (by name) influence and power which extends to discrimination of the finnish speaking population (more than 90%).
We are not ever encouraged to compare ourselves to anything but the swedes and knowledge of other nordic nations is slightly obscured by this fact.

-Sweden: generally held in very high regard and easily the most accomplished country. Jokingly disparaged. American movies never get the accent right. Treatment and attitudes towards the finnish populace (9%) are still a matter of debate. Language has affected spoken finnish to a significant degree.

-Iceland: very ancient language; teachers are hard to come by. I hear studying danish is obligatory, which seems a bit weird. Good strongman representation. Would like to go.

-Norway: contrary to finnish-swedish propaganda, norwegians seem to identify more with danes than the swedes. Does not allow binationality. Bulk of the sami people live there.
Supposedly far more friendly towards finns than the swedes. Have positive experiences. Contemplated going the next summer.

-Denmark: some pretty good movies, often feature the same actors. Language is a bit tricky; might take a course this year.
Comparatively barren landscape. A friend from teenage years had a very strange perception of finns. Employment related policies have inspired debate abroad.

-Greenland: Mentioned only because of the language's hypothesized relationship with finnish.


We're the poor communists, Norwegians are rich, happy and awesome, Finns and Ice people are total badasses and Danes make fantastic beer.

Norwegian or Icelandic for teh lulz sometimes. But I prefer English subtitles. Can't understand Finnish one bit, but I'm glad a lot of you speak Swedish, that's very kind.

I've even forgiven you for beating us in the hockey final.


What a difference a Dane makes!


Alffi...I already thought you established and admitted that blacks and Jews are superior to Scandinavians?


Well I'm a pretty miserable Norwegian these days, but then again I have thyroid issues. lol

I think Norway is "new money," and it shows. Bunch of farmers and fishermen that struck gold (oil), and are now struggling to cope with the niceties of civilized living. Made itself the retarded kid in school be giving a peace prize to the US President.

I get pissed off at how the country is run, not allowing the sale of decent supplements, setting dumbass restrictions on everything from what time of the day its safe to buy beer to passing legislation that forbids Norwegians to gamble or whatever, when they are abroad. That's right, we are passing laws that tells you what you can do OUTSIDE Norway. Prostitution legal in Holland? No problem, we'll make a law that says you can get prosecuted here when you get back. Smoked weed? Same thing... gah now I'm just rambling.

Don't know much about Sweden aside from the fact that a lot of young swedes come here to work. I'd take a guess that unemployment is a bit high in Sweden these days, and that wages are higher in Norway anyway. Personally I've never gotten along with Swedes at work, they have all had sticks up their asses about rules and protocols down to the smallest insignificant thing. Leading me to believe Swedish people wear seatbelts when on the toilet :stuck_out_tongue:

I got laid the first and only night I spent in Iceland, so obviously Iceland rocks.

Greenland: See Iceland.

Finland has Patrick Antonius and saunas. And from what I gather tops the list this year when it comes to standard of living. I kind of separate Finland from the rest of these countries because of the unrelated language, I don't think of it as Scandinavian.

As an aside, I hate the word Scandinavia. It makes me think of cheesy Eurovision contests.

Denmark: Good beer, good food, easy going people. Would go again.


I love the Danish



So by the sound of it, Norway is a bit looser or more 'mediterranean' in some ways than Sweden is, and I believe Finland is more similar to Sweden in that regard.

I don't think of Finland as more than artifically Scandinavian although I feel it has evolved to be very similar to true scandinavian nations. We would always compare our ways to those of Sweden, Norway etc. and talk of them as a larger group, out of a certain political decision. We're not doing this so much with, say, Estonia which shares similar historical development and a highly related language. It's simply regarded as a semi-russian tourist destination for cheap booze.

Finland is not a natural part of this (scandinavian) group and it's natural that Finland would turn to Norden for various reasons, as opposed to Russia. Consequently, some major politicians go so far as to declare that finns are "swedish" or that learning fluent swedish is "general knowledge".
The extent of this BS defies imagination. Regardless, all this indoctrination has at least made us assume that we're liked over those countries and that they/you would also like to learn and imitate our ways. Whether this ever happens is an open question for me.


This is how I picture Fins.





Finland gave me Behexen and for that I'm greatfull. I'm not sure what's popular over there but alot of great black and death metal comes from Finland. Behexen's By the Blessing of Satan is one of my favorite albums ever made.


I'm half Danish, half Swedish. All viking.

As for "iftting in" there is no denying the shared heritage and extremely entwined political and cultural history we all have. Finland falls a bit outside of this in my opinion, not only due to the language barrier but also due to a slightly more different mindset then that of Swedes, Danes and Norwegians, and the contact (political, historical, cultural etc) Finland has had with other Scandinavia nations, apart from Sweden, is limited.. I still like you though and the large number of Finland Swedes ties you in with us.

When it comes to the general populace I would say that there is a much closer feeling of connection between Swedes, Danes and Norwegians than these groups feel with Finland.

I've lived in 4 different countries in my short lifetime and travelled extensivly and it's my conclusion that Scandinavia is top-notch. Even if I didn't regard as "home" I would still look think that. A bit of economic reforms and we would be golden.


I'd say that Norwegians are definitely friendly towards Finns, yes.

There's this whole "Union" thing with the Swedes that we haven't quite gotten over yet, which the Swedes don't seem to get at all, but it doesn't run too deep...

We rip on the Swedes a lot - but also seem to get kind of defensive on their behalf if others do so, so I guess it's sort of like with certain relatives :slight_smile:

Dunno about us identifying more with Danes than with the Swedes, may have been more the case in the past than now.

I actually do think that Norwegians are a bit more laid back than the Swedes - even though, as Quick Ben says, some of our rules and regulations really, really drive me nuts at times...

I've been to Finland (mostly Tampere) on business trips a couple of times, but all I ever got to see was basically the inside of office buildings, unfortunately...




Back in the 40's and maybe on from there, some swedish intellectuals had elaborate racial theories proposing 'turanic' (uralic and altaic, including finns, hungarians etc.) people to be inferior and more primitive; some sort of asiatic mongrels without a distinct civilization of their own making. This thinking still persists among the finnish-swedish population on a more subtle level, and more rarely displays itself in clear view.

There exists a perception that finnish-swedish influences often distribute a negative image of Finland abroad, explaining some phenomenons like my danish friend thinking that finns regularly carry knives or crazy things like that.

With the recent, relative success of a subtly nationalist party in the parliamentary election, some were quick to grieve the incident and mourn the backwardness, xenophobia and whatever has either taken root or was always brewing among finns. No mention seems to be made of the fact that a seemingly similar party is third largest in Denmark just as was to be case here.

Finland was dominantly agrarian until quite recently and back in those days, Sweden (and by extension the rest of Scandinavia I suppose) was quite more developed and a haven sought by disadvantaged finns back home. However, things evolved and now Finland is not necessarily that inferior to Sweden, not to mention the smaller states.

About being laid back; one keeps hearing so often about how anyone but finns are more laid back and friendly that the conclusion seems irresistible. I think there's probably some truth to it.


Well yeah, Sweden did a number on you guys.

Finnish (of origin) speakers have had a rough time here too (the "Kvener/Kveeni" - Kvensk became a recognized minority languange in Norway as late as 2005, if I remember correctly). The Sami apparently opposed this...

I read somewhere that records go back as far as 800 on the Kvener..

But this is 2011. The second most recognized word from Finnish in Norway (after Sauna, of course) is Sisu, so take that to heart :).

As far as political parties go, we've had the Progress Party here for a long time. I'm 99% sure I'll never vote for them, but they've come of age and need to be taken seriously, and even though I'm basically a leftie of sorts I appreciate the sobering effect they've had on Labour.

They've thoroughly distanced themselves from the Sweden Democrats, which I respect and appreciate.

There was a time when the Greeks proudly exclaimed that they had zero racism. Of course, that was way back when they had close to zero immigrants.


What's interesting is that Finns, just like Estonians, Latvians, Lithuanians seem to try pretty hard to be accepted by the "western europeans" as one of their own - trying to distance themselves from Russia, where Finns have more ethnic/language relatives than in any "european" country.
Despite the fact that under Swedes they were considered 2nd class citizens with Finnish language considered to be the language of the uneducated common folk, while under Russia their culture was given a green light and Kalevala was eventually published in the mid 1800s...



Jk, I have no idea what all blood is in me, I just know I am white. So who knows. Go Scandinavia.


U mad? You're free and rich and happy now. Problem?

We rip on you too. Like brothers I guess.


Srsly what's the difference betweeen Sweden Denmark and Norway? How closely related are the 3?


This thread blows.