Scandinavian Studies

David Thompson (department head), Laurie Iudin-Nelson (director of Nordic Studies)

For a major or minor in Scandinavian Studies, see Nordic Studies under the curriculum section. For Scandinavian Studies courses in English, see art, foreign culture, history, Paideia, and other related disciplines.

Scandinavian Studies Courses

SCST 101 Elementary Norwegian I

  • 4 hours

Speaking Norwegian from the first day of class, students learn to apply a practical knowledge, first to their own situation in this country and subsequently to selected aspects of Norwegian culture ranging from everyday customs and manners, travel and shopping, to history, the arts, and education.

SCST 102 Elementary Norwegian II

  • 4 hours
  • Prerequisites: SCST 101

Speaking Norwegian from the first day of class, students learn to apply a practical knowledge, first to their own situation in this country and subsequently to selected aspects of Norwegian culture ranging from everyday customs and manners, travel and shopping, to history, the arts and education.

SCST 201 Intermediate Norwegian

  • 4 hours
  • Prerequisites: SCST 102.

With the aim of developing ease in the students' ability to communicate in the language and to increase their knowledge of the country, the course combines readings, recent Norwegian feature films, oral discussions, dramatization, and written compositions with a general review of grammar and pronunciation.

SCST 202 Norwegian Through Film and Literature

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression
  • Prerequisites: SCST 201.

Continuing to develop students' abilities to communicate in the language and to increase their knowledge of the country, the course combines readings from short stories, novels, and recent Norwegian feature films. Students will be asked to conduct oral presentations, written analysis and contribute to course discussions that further their competencies in Norwegian language and the development of cultural and artistic understanding.

SCST 250 Topics in Nordic Literature

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts
  • Prerequisites: SCST 202.

This course will offer reading and discussion of literature of various genres, authors and time periods of Norway and other Nordic countries. Topics will change annually and rotate. Students may enroll in the course multiple times for credit (and count towards the major/minor in Nordic Studies), provided that the topic is new. The course is taught in English and readings are in English. Students who have completed SCST 202 may elect to enroll in this course for extra assignments in Norwegian.

SCST 251 Topics in Nordic Film

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts
  • Prerequisites: SCST 202.

The course will offer viewing and discussion of films of various genres, directors and time periods of Norway and other Nordic countries. Topics will change annually and rotate. Students may enroll in the course multiple times for credit (and count towards the major/minor in Nordic Studies), provided that the topic is new. The course is taught in English, readings are in English, and films are subtitled in English. Students who have completed SCST 202 may elect to enroll in this course for extra assignments in Norwegian.

SCST 345 Composition, Conversation, and Advanced Grammar

  • 4 hours
  • Prerequisites: SCST 202.

This course is for students who have completed four semesters of college-level Norwegian or the equivalent. It focuses on developing skills in speaking, writing, and reading comprehension and offers ample opportunity for individual practice and feedback. Several recent feature films and novels provide the basis for class discussion and writing assignments, while the course culminates in an oral report based on individual research.

SCST 346 Scandinavian Immigration History

  • 4 hours
  • Prerequisites: SCST 202.

A study of the history of immigrants to the United States from Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Finland, and Iceland, and their descendants. Drawing on the rich ethnic resources of Luther College and Vesterheim museums, this course examines the nature of the immigration experience and the development within immigrant communities of a sense of old world ethnicity combined with a rising U.S. nationalism. Students will be required to do some of the reading in a Scandinavian language and meet one day a week in which the class in conducted in Norwegian.

SCST 348 Vikings in History

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Behavior—Social Science Methods, Historical
  • Prerequisites: PAID 112 or the equivalent.

This course covers the "Viking Era," approximately 780 - 1070 CE. It will examine Viking society, religion and mythology, social structure, maritime technology and shipbuilding, political developments, literature and arts, and Viking expansion. Students will submit papers written in Norwegian, Danish or Swedish. Students without a background in Scandinavian studies should enroll in HIST 348.

SCST 352 Scandinavia and the Baltic

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Behavior, Historical

A survey of Scandinavian and Baltic history (including Finland and Iceland), beginning with the Viking age and ending with the current status of the welfare state in the relevant countries. Special emphasis on the Great Power periods of Denmark and Sweden in the 16th and the 17th centuries, and on the emergence of Norwegian and Finnish national movements in the 18th and 19th centuries. Discussion as well of current political and economic issues in Scandinavia. Students must submit papers written in Norwegian, Danish or Swedish. Students without a background in Scandinavian studies should enroll in HIST 352. Offered alternate years.

SCST 361 Henrik Ibsen

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts
  • Prerequisites: PAID 112D or transfer equivalent and SCST 202

Norway's preeminent playwright, Henrik Ibsen, lived most of his life outside of his homeland, which he nevertheless observed with unmatched acuity. The course follows Ibsen's development as a dramatist while also exploring the cultural context of his time. The course includes recent film productions of selected plays and an opportunity to experience an Ibsen play as performed by the Commonweal Theater in Lanesboro, MN. All readings and discussions are in English. Students who have completed SCST 202 may elect to enroll in this course for additional coursework in Norwegian. Offered on a rotating basis.

SCST 363 Norway's Nobel Prize-Winning Authors

  • 4 hours
  • Fulfills: Human Expression—Primary Texts
  • Prerequisites: PAID 112 or equivalent, SCST 202.

Through the lives and literature of Nobel Prize-winning authors, Bjornstjerne Bjornson, Knut Hamsun, and Sigrid Undset, the history of Norway unfolds with its struggles and triumphs from the Middle Ages through Norway's World War II occupation by Hitler's forces. Reading selected works and viewing films based on them, as well as researching the authors' lives and times, students will gain an understanding of the highlights of Norway's history and literary production. All readings and discussion are in English. Advanced Norwegian language students may elect to enroll in this course for additional coursework in Norwegian. Offered on a rotating basis.

SCST 490 Senior Project

  • 1, 2, or 4 hours