Velkomin! Modern Icelandic is the language spoken by the 300,000+ inhabitants of Iceland, a volcanic island in the middle of the North Atlantic. Iceland was settled by Viking-era settlers from Scandinavia and their slaves, who arrived from Scandinavia and the Scandinavian colonies in Great Britain and Ireland. These Vikings colonized Iceland and Greenland and, briefly, North America. While Icelandic is a Scandinavian language, closely related to Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish, the remote location of the island and the pride that Icelanders have historically taken in their language has kept the changes in the language to a minimum since the Viking Age. This means that Icelandic has a more complicated structure than other Scandinavian languages, but it also means that learning Modern Icelandic makes it easier to learn to read Old Norse, the language of the sagas, poetry, and mythology recorded during the medieval period.
The goal for the first year will be to comprehend spoken and written Icelandic relating to familiar, everyday topics, and to speak and write Icelandic well enough to satisfy immediate needs. In the second semester we will continue to focus on developing more advanced grammar skills, as well as readiness for basic social situations and common needs, while working on more fluent speaking and writing.
(None as such; written materials provided by instructor)
Final Exam: 25%
Oral Exams: 10%
Prerequisites: Icelandic 1A.