About the Department of Scandinavian Studies

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Danish authors such as Jens Baggesen or Johan Ludvig Holberg, and Danish-Norwegian-German cultural mediator Henrich Steffens are but three examples of some prominent Scandinavian writers who were once working at venerable Nordic Institute, from the beginnings of 19th century until 2011 the predecessor of the present Department for Scandinavian Studies at ISFAS. There are other famous Scandinavian writers associated with the University of Kiel in general, most prominent among them certainly Swedish Nobel prize winner Selma Lagerlöf, who was nominated as honorary doctor of the university in 1932. This indicates the long-lasting significance of Kiel and its university as gateways to Scandinavia. The very same is true as regards the whole state of Schleswig-Holstein, too, where some of the most important monuments of Scandinavian history can be found – e. g., the archeological site of the former trading centre Haithabu (Hedeby), the defensive fortification of Dannevirke, both from early Middle Ages, or some valuable rune inscriptions.

This makes it evident that Kiel is just the right place to devote yourself to the study of Scandinavian literature, culture, and languages. Concerning the rate of students, the Department of Scandinavian Studies is at present one of the largest departments of this kind outside of Scandinavia. The course offerings include Modern Scandinavian literature, Medieval Studies, Scandinavian linguistics, and the languages of Danish, Finnish, Icelandic, Norwegian, and Swedish, which are represented by permanent lectorates or a visiting lecturer (Finnish).

Thus, we invite you to find at the Scandinavian Department a multitude of intriguing and highly diversified courses, which will certainly measure up to your expectations!