Subject Material

English in Daily Communication

Norwegian Students Adopt English

Published: 05.01.2011, Updated: 04.03.2017
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Stop for a minute and think about how much English you use in your everyday language. You’ll be surprised – or maybe not... According to a study published in the Norwegian paper, Aftenposten, (see link below) young people in Norway seem to use more and more English in their daily communication. Is that a problem? If so – these Norwegian students don’t see it.

 

English Influence on Norwegian 

 English comes naturallyEnglish comes naturallyGradually English words and expressions creep into our daily language. The phenomenon is not a new one. English loanwords have for a long time been commonly used in commercials and snappy slogans, but today we see a totally different trend.

English words and expressions now pop up in young people’s everyday language and have become familiar elements of colloquial communication. This comes hand-in-hand with the abbreviations and slang used in texting and on social media like Facebook. And this vocabulary will gradually and naturally rub off on verbal conversation.

The interviewed students actually think it is cool to know and use English expressions; their own native language is boring in comparison. Also, certain idioms are difficult to translate, and will therefore work better in English.

Will this development mean a threat to the Norwegian language in general? Linguists seem to disagree on the matter. Some claim that our language will be extinct in less than fifty years if this trend continues. Others say that this is nothing new and that Norwegian will survive despite the influence from English. The new situation is the fusion between verbal and written language. This will mean more everyday English, yes, but it will also revitalize our native dialects since we more and more tend to write the way we speak.

Check this link to read the interview with the Norwegian students:
– Helt naturlig å bruke engelsk

 

Comprehension

  1. What is the new trend in English influence on Norwegian?
  2. Give examples of how you use English on an everyday basis.
  3. Do you think this may mean a threat to the Norwegian language and culture in general?

 

Vocabulary

These words and expressions are used in the article, explain them in English:

  • Colloquial communication
  • Abbreviated
  • Idioms
  • Fusion

 

Key
  • Colloquial communication is informal everyday language
  • Abbreviated means shortened
  • Idioms are fixed expressions and sayings that are difficult to translate (E.g. Get out of hand)
  • Fusion is when two or more elements are mixed together into one entity.
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