Is Swedish Difficult ?
Why is Swedish Language assumed to be difficult ?
First of all nobody wants to learn something which is difficult. And also learning something challenging requires a lot of motivation from within. Let us if Swedish as a foreign language is hard to learn or not. To begin with Swedish is the native language and is widely spoken by at-least around 8.7miliion speakers throughout the world. Also it is very surprising to know the fact that according to Foreign Service Institute(FSI),Swedish is actually one of the easiest languages for native English speakers to learn. But we still do presume that learning Swedish is a little complicated. Lets see why !
The reason why we say Swedish is a difficult language is due to its PRO-NUN-CIA-TION. Most of us are already wondering from where these sounds had originated? And how can anyone pronounce the sj-sound(an in famous pronunciation which exists in Swedish that threatens most of the aspiring linguists) right?. To make it even more complicated there are several other combinations which are also pronounced this way .
For example (sj, sk, skj, stj, sch and ch, as well as ti and si before –on),And these sounds are unique to Swedish language. And also the vowels are classified as Hard and Soft with respect to its position. And each of the vowel has at-least two sounds . For example, katt (cat) is pronounced with a hard K, while köttbullar (meatballs) is pronounced with a soft K, similar to the English [sh] in “ship.” The same pattern of rule applies to the letter G. In Gotland it has a hard pronunciation, like in the English word “goal,” while in Göteborg it has a soft pronunciation, similar to the [y] sound in the English word “yet.”
There are also three new letters which doesn’t exist in English. They are Å, Ä, Ö. Also another aspect of the language that appears to be exciting for linguists is the prevalence of compound words like sjuttonhundrasjuttiosju (1777) and tändsticksask (matchbox) (to name a few)in Swedish .
Even the Swedes themselves find it a little uncomfortable with certain sound and pronunciation .But this alone should not stop anyone from learning the language. In general no language can be categorized as hard or easy .Every language has its own aspects which should be taken as a challenge to overcome and master. So alla de bästa and Hejdå.