15 Swedish Words We Should Incorporate Into English Immediately
"Four independent theaters in Sweden have launched a campaign to install a rating system that classifies films based on their representations of gender. Films will be approved with an “A-rating” if they pass the Bechdel test, named after Alison Bechdel, whose 1985 comic strip inspired its development. The Bechdel test has the minimal criteria that the film contains at least two female characters that talk to each other about something besides men. While this yardstick of measurement may seem easy enough, the amount of films passing the test has proven surprisingly scant.”
Sweden to Address Gender Inequality in Film
"Swedish, adding to all the awesomeness, has proven especially adept at coining new words for the new circumstances occasioned by new technologies. Below, some of the best Swedologisms I could find, via the Swedish news site The Local. We should, obviously, incorporate them into English as soon as possible.
1. Bloggbävning, n.
Definition: Literally translating to “blogquake,” the word describes the process by which a topic explodes in the blogosphere and is then picked up by more mainstream media outlets.
Used in an English sentence: “Man, that ‘ogooglebar’ thing really caused a bloggbävning today.”
2. Livslogga, v.
Definition: Literally translating to “life log,” the word refers to continually documenting one’s life in pictures.
Used in an English sentence: “I know my Instagram is full of retro-looking pictures of salads, but what can I say? It’s fun to livslogga.”
3. Ogooglebar, adj.
Definition: Literally meaning “ungoogleable,” the term is used to describe someone or something that doesn’t show up in Google results.
Used in an English sentence: “I’m going on a date tonight, but he’s totally ogooglebar! What are the odds he’s an axe murderer?”
4. Nomofob, n.
Definition: A person who feels anxious at the very thought of being separated from his or her mobile phone. (Adapted from the clunky English “no mobile phone phobia.”)
Used in an English sentence: “I’d love to go swimming, but I can’t be in the water for very long — I’m sort of a nomofob.”
“If you had to be reborn anywhere in the world as a person with average talents and income, you would want to be a Viking. The Nordics cluster at the top of league tables of everything from economic competitiveness to social health to happiness. They have avoided both southern Europe’s economic sclerosis and America’s extreme inequality. Development theorists have taken to calling successful modernisation “getting to Denmark”. Meanwhile a region that was once synonymous with do-it-yourself furniture and Abba has even become a cultural haven, home to “The Killing”, Noma and “Angry Birds” […]
Denmark and Norway allow private firms to run public hospitals. Sweden has a universal system of school vouchers, with private for-profit schools competing with public schools. Denmark also has vouchers—but ones that you can top up. When it comes to choice, Milton Friedman would be more at home in Stockholm than in Washington, DC.
All Western politicians claim to promote transparency and technology. The Nordics can do so with more justification than most. The performance of all schools and hospitals is measured. Governments are forced to operate in the harsh light of day: Sweden gives everyone access to official records. Politicians are vilified if they get off their bicycles and into official limousines. The home of Skype and Spotify is also a leader in e-government: you can pay your taxes with an SMS message. […]
The main lesson to learn from the Nordics is not ideological but practical. The state is popular not because it is big but because it works. A Swede pays tax more willingly than a Californian because he gets decent schools and free health care. The Nordics have pushed far-reaching reforms past unions and business lobbies. The proof is there. You can inject market mechanisms into the welfare state to sharpen its performance. You can put entitlement programmes on sound foundations to avoid beggaring future generations. But you need to be willing to root out corruption and vested interests. And you must be ready to abandon tired orthodoxies of the left and right and forage for good ideas across the political spectrum.”
The Nordic Countries: The Next Supermodel | The Economist