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hermanChess
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11 Apr 2009, 2:56 am

Well, I live in Costa Rica, probably have spanish blood in me, I'm not sure if there are scandinavian traces in me.



2ukenkerl
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11 Apr 2009, 6:43 am

mosez wrote:
sinsboldly wrote:
and that is why I felt so comfortable (and they with me) in Minnesota!

but seriously, Ashkenazi Jews have a large proportion of Asperger's Syndrome as well.


Merle


I'm not jumping to conclusions, but I read some interesting theory about the lost tribes of the jews. It's told that (not sure if I get the names correct) but there was a tribe called Aser? It's said that in angient times they settled down in the area that now is known as Azerbadjan-(Aser..somthing)
Later they broke up, heading north, and settled in scandinavia.
If you are familiar with norse mythology, the angient scandinavians had gods, but the name for these gods was.. aser. It's assumed that some of their jewish myths travelled with them and by time got changed into norse mythology.
So, If this theory holds any water, the scandinavians are in fact a part of the lost tribe aser, and in fact jews. Asers tribe was known among other things, for their fair skin and blonde hair.


What came first, the chicken or the egg? Ashkenazi is from a term meaning jews of the Ashkenaz. (or jews from around germany) To use the theory, that you spoke of, one may say the Ashkenazi jews were NAZIs! NAZI just means national socialism. As for the fair skin and blonde hair, that doesn't sound very jewish. One figures that they were either certain people, like mentoned in the book of esther, or they were talking about their later appearance. They DID eventually settle down in an area where such people fit in, after all.

The names for the norse gods apparently came from trees. That is not unusual. Heck, Thor(or tor) means THUNDER. In German, torsdag(thunder day) is donnerstag(thunder day). English probably simply adopted the danish writting as thursday. In fact, in Danish that WOULD sound like tursday.



aspie_girl
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11 Apr 2009, 9:51 am

Margrethe wrote:
As a Norwegian... I've met a lot of Scandinavians who aren't socially awkward.

That's a huge generalization, IMO.


Same here. I'm danish, and I've met a lot of scandinavians who arent' socialy awkward.



Aze
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11 Apr 2009, 1:57 pm

I am myself Finnish so I have a word to say on this subject.

Somebody correctly argued that Finland is not part of Scandinavia, at least in the most common sense. I'll have to give slight precision on that:

In Finland it's quite agreed that we are not geographicly part of Scandinavia. Sometimes you can see the term being used loosely, but theres rarely ambiguity. A broader term Fennoscandia is usually used when Finland is included. Secondly, linguisticly there is a huge difference. Our languages are completely distinct, Finnish being part of the Fenno-Ugric language family among with the Sami languages, some small languages in Russia and Hungary. Genetically we are also distinct. However, Finland has been part of Sweden to 1809 when Russian conquered Finland, meaning that culturally Finland is not that far away. If you make quick comparison, there are not that many differences unlike somebody argued.

Simply said: Finland is not part of Scandinavia on map nor in genes (making Finland irrelevant in this topic). However, culturally (if you don't mind the language) there is not that much difference.

Okay, to the actual topic then. People in Nordic countries (now including Finland) are generally not that chatty or open as, for example, in US. In my opinion that is purely cultural. As exaggeration, in Finland the US style forced smiles, small talk and being buddies with all the possible stangers at every point is considered unnatural. On the other way the lack of it in Finland is consider eccentric behavior. Whatever the reason, I think that living in such a northen and dark location have moulded the culture that way. The same applying to Scandinavia of course. I however think that AS being more of European origin is not that far off.

As a last point, I want to breake some stereotypes that might have occured: Nordic countries are dark only during the Winter-time. Most people would freak out if after their stereotypes would see the 20h+ of sunlight in summer per day. And they would also freak out if the would see 20h+ of dark per day during Winter... And we dont have polar bears.



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11 Apr 2009, 2:15 pm

My impression is that much of this talk seems much more about something like schizoid pd than about asperger: much reference to quitness, coldness, introversion, etc. and almost nothing about special interests, obsessive routines, long monologues, saying innapropriate things in public, etc.



Shelby
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11 Apr 2009, 6:43 pm

Henriksson wrote:
Margrethe wrote:
As a Norwegian... I've met a lot of Scandinavians who aren't socially awkward.

That's a huge generalization, IMO.

Yeah, exactly. Maybe the OP should actually spend some time with Scandinavians before making any remarks.


Generalizations generally DON'T mean every single person in a group. Like the generalization I hear about Aussies is that we're laid back, friendly, love to just hang out. Well of course that's not everyone, but when people come to Australia that is always the impression they get of the people. I've been to Germany - a generalization I would make is that Germans are very organized people. I'm sure there are some very disorganized Germans, but *generally* - they are very efficient people who like to get things done. So after living in Sweden and visiting there many times, I can make the generalization that Swedes are cold, stand-offish and lack empathy. I've met many warm, friendly and caring Swedes! But they are not the majority. Not by a long shot.



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11 Apr 2009, 6:57 pm

Ana54 wrote:
I always knew that autism was Scandinavian/Germanic. Look at any autistic person and you'll see the physical Scandinavian/Germanic traits. Once I saw a picture of a bunch of autistic people in a group home or something and they all looked like relatives... they all looked alike. They were all blond, blue-eyed, pale, husky, and generally Scandinavian-looking.


Except for all the people with autism who don't look like that. I worked at a school for kids with autism and around 50% of the student population was black and another quarter was Hispanic. None of them looked remotely Scandinavian. Maybe the group home just happened to be in an area where the people were largely Scandinavian in descent, like Minnesota or many places in the Midwest.


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Dennis
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11 Apr 2009, 10:26 pm

That's kind of an interesting theory considering that I'm an American with AS and my family's been in America for generations, but I've been told I have a Scandinavian accent.



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12 Apr 2009, 5:31 am

Shelby wrote:
Henriksson wrote:
Margrethe wrote:
As a Norwegian... I've met a lot of Scandinavians who aren't socially awkward.

That's a huge generalization, IMO.

Yeah, exactly. Maybe the OP should actually spend some time with Scandinavians before making any remarks.


Generalizations generally DON'T mean every single person in a group. Like the generalization I hear about Aussies is that we're laid back, friendly, love to just hang out. Well of course that's not everyone, but when people come to Australia that is always the impression they get of the people. I've been to Germany - a generalization I would make is that Germans are very organized people. I'm sure there are some very disorganized Germans, but *generally* - they are very efficient people who like to get things done. So after living in Sweden and visiting there many times, I can make the generalization that Swedes are cold, stand-offish and lack empathy. I've met many warm, friendly and caring Swedes! But they are not the majority. Not by a long shot.

Image

Damn! Pretty sharp for a culture that is unemphatic and stand-offish!

Hehe, look at this page.

Quote:
Most Swedes born after World War II do speak or understand English - many of them very well, actually - and you will probably be able to have a memorable and enjoyable stay in Sweden without any deeper knowledge of Swedish. But you will find that just a few words of Swedish will work as a wonderful door-key to the Swedes, who have a reputation of being rather reserved to strangers. Addressing someone in his or her native language is a matter of respect, a way of showing that you play by their rules, so to speak.


Maybe we're cold and reserved, but only to people we meet from other countries? :lol:


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dougn
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12 Apr 2009, 9:45 am

Henriksson wrote:
Damn! Pretty sharp for a culture that is unemphatic and stand-offish!

What is that a graph of?



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12 Apr 2009, 10:04 am

dougn wrote:
Henriksson wrote:
Damn! Pretty sharp for a culture that is unemphatic and stand-offish!

What is that a graph of?

GNI stands for Gross National Income and the graph shows what percentage was given to help developing countries.

Here is a Wikipedia Article about this.


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Shelby
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13 Apr 2009, 3:43 am

I'm sorry but what does that graph prove? So the government assists other countries...how does that change the fact that the majority of Swedes are cold and unempathetic? The government does not necessarily reflect the culture and attitudes of the general people, look at George Bush, many Americans hated him.

Still, Swedes aren't really anything like Aspies. Most Aspies I have met are not cold at all, just quirky.

"But you will find that just a few words of Swedish will work as a wonderful door-key to the Swedes, who have a reputation of being rather reserved to strangers. Addressing someone in his or her native language is a matter of respect, a way of showing that you play by their rules, so to speak."

I found that if you speak Swedish with ANY kind of accent, they will switch to English. I was very pleased when the day came that they would answer in Swedish.



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13 Apr 2009, 4:13 am

Shelby wrote:
I'm sorry but what does that graph prove? So the government assists other countries...how does that change the fact that the majority of Swedes are cold and unempathetic? The government does not necessarily reflect the culture and attitudes of the general people, look at George Bush, many Americans hated him.


Even more important, you can be cold and unempathetic and, even that, be prone to assist and help other people (or countries): you can be drive to help by an internalized moral rule, instead of by emotion.



Shelby
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13 Apr 2009, 4:46 am

TPE2 wrote:
Shelby wrote:
I'm sorry but what does that graph prove? So the government assists other countries...how does that change the fact that the majority of Swedes are cold and unempathetic? The government does not necessarily reflect the culture and attitudes of the general people, look at George Bush, many Americans hated him.


Even more important, you can be cold and unempathetic and, even that, be prone to assist and help other people (or countries): you can be drive to help by an internalized moral rule, instead of by emotion.


Great point, I was also thinking that people often donate for other reasons such as tax (Sweden has very high taxes) so high charity levels wouldn't necessarily prove that a group of people were caring and generous.



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13 Apr 2009, 9:26 am

Shelby wrote:
I'm sorry but what does that graph prove? So the government assists other countries...how does that change the fact that the majority of Swedes are cold and unempathetic?

The graph, the wikipedia article and the article about language is still more than what you have backed up your claims with: nothing.

All you have backed up your claims with so far is personal experience, and it's not even like you've given specific examples or anything, you've just stated that Swedes are unemphatic and stand-offish.

And I disagree with that, and since I've actually lived in Sweden all my life that puts your testimony in bad light.

Still, got any article that shows Swedes are more unemphatic or something like that?


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13 Apr 2009, 10:47 am

Henriksson wrote:

Maybe we're cold and reserved, but only to people we meet from other countries? :lol:


That would border xenophobia, wouldn't it? :wink:

Joking aside, I agree generalization can be very misleading - I've met wonderful people in Sweden and a few a**holes - just like everywhere else.

I think most people have problems because they don't expect Scandinavian culture to be so different from the Western one. I think you wrote earlier that being Scandinavian it's more about a certain life style and that's the crux of it. I don't agree with the AS correlation - social interaction is just as important in Sweden as anywhere else, but it's significantly different and it can be very frustrating for an aspie, since there's a lot of non-verbal communication going on. Same goes for an extroverted person who might feel rejected even if they're not.

Personally, I appreciated the lack of nosiness and incessant chit-chat, but I had some problems with conformity being so highly valued, although I managed to explain to some of my friends that being different and wanting to stay that way doesn't necessarily mean you think you're better than others. My first impression was that swedes have a very low tolerance for any form of criticism, but I found that the way you express yourself is crucial -"your bureaucracy sucks" will anger most, while a more constructive and rational approach about how things could be improved is less susceptible to offend.

This is of course just my personal experience of the two and a half years spent in Stockholm and while I don't consider it universal, I do believe it has some relevance.


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