Scandinavian Studies UW-Madison

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Scandinavian Studies, established in 1875, is the oldest such department in North America. It offers comprehensive study of the language, literature, and culture of the Nordic countries at undergraduate and graduate levels. Courses in the following areas are currently offered by the Department on a regular basis: Danish, Norwegian, Swedish, Finnish, and Old Norse-Icelandic language; Scandinavian linguistics, Scandinavian literature, Old Norse-Icelandic literature; and Scandinavian folklore. Advanced seminars and directed courses are also offered in all these areas.

Questions? Comments? You can contact us directly by emailing uwscandstudies(at)gmail(dot)com. You can also check out our department home page by going to
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ST. KNUT’S DAY Or Twentieth Day Yule if you like. The day you throw out the christmas tree and get to smash the gingerbread house (in Sweden anyway), and christmas is officially over.

This year we got some help from the coolest cousin: Sirius “Loco Hammer”.

God tjugondag jul!

(via kissapan)


Which one is Rudolph? Reindeer on their way to a winter market in Sweden above the Arctic Circle, 1955. 

(Photo: Carl Mydans—Time & Life Pictures/Getty Images)


Telephone tower in Stockholm, Sweden that supported ~4,000 wires. The structure stood until the 1950’s.


Photo break:

Residents of the small Norwegian town of Rjukan have finally seen the light.

Tucked in between steep mountains, the town is normally shrouded in shadow for almost six months a year, with residents having to catch a cable car to the top of a nearby precipice to get a fix of midday vitamin D.

But on Wednesday faint rays from the winter sun for the first time reached the town’s market square, thanks to three 183-square-foot mirrors placed on a mountain.

Cheering families, some on sun loungers, drinking cocktails and waving Norwegian flags, donned shades as the sun crept from behind a cloud to hit the mirrors and reflect down onto the faces of delighted children below.

via USA Today

UW Students Abroad in Scandinavia

Recent UW-Madison Graduate (And Scand Studies major!) Caitlin Mackesey, pictured here as the more diminutive of the two savage vikings, took these photos while studying abroad in Umeå her junior year. Look at those adorable jultomtar! 


Hairy Wind Farm

One such sustainable design by Swedish architectural firm Belatchew Arkritekter involves transforming the Söder Torn tower in Stockholm into a gigantic wind farm. This will be achieved by covering the skyscraper in a large number of hairy-looking straws. The straws are made of a composite material that contains piezoelectric properties, which can convert motion from the wind into electric energy. 

Well, that’s one way to celebrate…

Happy Syttende mai, everybody!


17th of may


A photo from today’s syttende mai celebrations in Oslo! See more photos here. (From The Nordic Page - Norway)


Old Finnish People With Things On Their Heads: Amazing Photo Series

We already posted this on our department Facebook page, but it’s so amazing we just had to make sure EVERYBODY saw it. Enjoy.