On December 29, 2016, Einar Petander, a Swedish native speaker and university professor, gave a talk at the University’s Ilovaiskaya Street campus on the basics of learning Swedish. The whole lecture was delivered in English, enabling students who had never studied Swedish to understand the topics covered, including pronunciation, conversational vocabulary, grammar, and word order. It also gave third-year students the opportunity to review these topics for themselves and explain any difficult aspects to beginners. The students were also given a chance to speak to each other in Swedish about themselves and their favorite pastimes.
After the lesson, the students sat down to drink tea. At this time they were able to ask questions about the culture of Sweden and life there, and otherwise to speak with Prof. Petander in an informal setting. The atmosphere at the event was warm and friendly. In addition to knowing Swedish and English, Prof. Petander has a large Russian vocabulary and a knowledge of the language. In this connection something rather amusing occurred: A student couldn’t remember the English word for ‘buckwheat’ (a staple food in Russia), and Einar figured out what she was trying to say. The day of the talk also happened to be Prof. Petander’s birthday. The students from the Department of German studies wished him ‘Happy Birthday’ and gave him an English copy of the book Everyday Saints as a birthday present.