[lg policy] Kotus: Finnish and Swedish are under serious threat

Harold Schiffman haroldfs at gmail.com
Mon Nov 5 11:50:14 EST 2018


 Kotus: Finnish and Swedish are under serious threat
<http://www.helsinkitimes.fi/finland/finland-news/domestic/15925-kotus-finnish-and-swedish-are-under-serious-threat.html>
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02 November 2018 Domestic
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[image: A large share of Finns are living in a textual world where the
influence of English is growing at the expense of that of Finnish and
Swedish, highlights the Finnish Language Board of Kotus. (Credit: Loic
Venance – AFP/Lehtikuva)] A large share of Finns are living in a textual
world where the influence of English is growing at the expense of that of
Finnish and Swedish, highlights the Finnish Language Board of Kotus.
(Credit: Loic Venance – AFP/Lehtikuva)



The Finnish government must take urgent action to draft a national language
policy programme, demands the Institute for the Languages of Finland
(Kotus).

The Finnish Language Board of Kotus stated on 26 October that both Finnish
and Swedish are under serious threat as their social position and scope of
use are being undermined by lexical borrowing and other influences from
foreign languages.

Finnish, it reminds, has developed into a functional language that is used
in all sectors of the society as a result of determined efforts over the
past two centuries.

The threat arises partly from the internet, according to the Finnish
Language Board. It points out that a considerable share of the public live
in a textual world where the influence of English is growing at the expense
of that of Finnish and Swedish.

“We are close to a situation where we will have to make a concrete decision
about whether we want to hold on to our mother tongue or whether we are
prepared to abandon it in favour of another language – first only in
certain areas of life but gradually more and more extensively,” said
<https://www.kotus.fi/nyt/uutistekstit/kotuksen_uutiset/kotuksen_uutiset_2018/suomi_tarvitsee_kansallisen_kielipoliittisen_ohjelman.28920.news>
the Finnish Language Board.

“The trend is already underway and we should respond to it based on
carefully collected data and the broad understanding at our disposal.”

Established under the Ministry of Education and Culture, Kotus is an expert
institute tasked with compiling dictionaries, providing a variety of
language-related services, and maintaining and developing archives and
corpora, for example.

Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Source: Uusi Suomi
<https://www.uusisuomi.fi/kotimaa/262869-varoitus-suomen-kielen-asemasta-kotus-vakava-uhka-kahden-vuosisadan-tyo-uhkaa>


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 Harold F. Schiffman

Professor Emeritus of
 Dravidian Linguistics and Culture
Dept. of South Asia Studies
University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6305

Phone:  (215) 898-7475
Fax:  (215) 573-2138

Email:  haroldfs at gmail.com
http://ccat.sas.upenn.edu/~haroldfs/

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