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What do expressions with north and northern people tell us?

Authors
  • Sorvali, Irma
Type
Published Article
Journal
International journal of circumpolar health
Publication Date
Feb 01, 2002
Volume
61
Issue
1
Pages
61–69
Identifiers
PMID: 12002949
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

The aim of this article is to study linguistic expressions which include the words North and Northern people. This is done by philological and linguistic analysis of the material, which consists of different types of written documents dating from different historical periods. The oldest historical documents were produced by the Ancient Roman writers, who wrote about wild tribes living in the North. The expression "the evil from the North" in the Bible is also used by the Fathers of the Church, when describing the Great Migrations. The most recent material consists of academic texts-dealing with the Northern dimension--and everyday texts--in this case, mostly of bread packages--referring among other things to people's nutrition and health. Expressions referring to the North are also present in modern material, but the negative association of the older documents is not so present. All the texts, both historical and modern, are discussed as a whole from Finnish and Scandinavian points of view. Semiotic aspects are highlighted by the use of some visual illustrations from the different texts in point.

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