Chapter 9: Swedish Again

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Swedish Again: Chapter-By-Chapter Guide

Questions for Understanding

  1. What was Anna’s relationship to duct tape?
  2. How did Anna reward Fionn for helping her move?
  3. If Marie’s apartment was small, why was it so amazing?
  4. What did Anna’s mother do when Anna was 14?

Questions for Group Reflection and Discussion

  1. This chapter starts with Anna moving out of Kevin’s apartment because she needs to sleep better. What role do you think selfcare pays in caring for others? In your case, what do you need in order to function adequately?
  2. Anna ponders if her expectation of Fionn to carry her suitcase come from sexism, her age, or perhaps American culture. What do you think?
  3. While at the Baha’i Center, Anna writes reconnects with a friend who is a professional social worker. In this way, she gets some emotional support. What are some various ways of getting emotional support, and what are the advantages and disadvantages of each? For example, is it preferable to speak to family and friends, or is seeing a professional better?

Ideas for Further Consideration

  • What role do you think food plays in culture and one’s connection to a culture? How is this expressed in your own life?
  • In which ways do you think it can be different for a child to be raised by a single dad versus a single mom? Is it important to have two parents at home? Why, or why not?

Especially for English Language Learners

Key Words and Expressions:

“a Honey-Do list” = a list of chores for a husband, lovingly requested. “Honey” is a term for one’s sweetheart or spouse, and “honeydew,” which sounds the same as “honey do” is a sweet melon. (p.88)

“a strapping 16-year-old” = a strong, tall, healthy young man (p. 88)

“my Swedish person-number”= This is a direct translation of the Swedish word, personnummer, which is an official ID number, similar to an American Social Security Number. The is no perfect word for this in English. (p.95)

“bursting with goodies” = very full of candy and treats (p. 96)

Language Focus 1:

Writing About Money

  1. When writing about dollars, remember to put the dollar symbol before the number even though you read it after the number.

For example:

$25 = twenty-five dollars

$6,000 = six thousand dollars

(Do NOT write 24$ or 6,000$. That’s a mistake.)

2. Money in foreign currency is usually explained if the amount is important.

For example:

“‘Don’t forget the 475kr fee’. That was $50, amazingly cheap.” (ch. 8, p. 83)

Language Focus 2:

Reading Unfamiliar Words

When you read a story and encounter an unfamiliar word, sometimes the author explains it in the next sentence or next phrase. This is because the author assumes it is unfamiliar to most people. This is especially true when the word is in italics. (Authors use italics to mark non-English words, for example.)

Therefore, don’t stop reading! Read at least one sentence more to see if the author explains the word before running to a dictionary!

Princess Cake. The cake got its name from a Swedish princess…this amazing, marzipan covered, whipped cream filled cake…” (p.92)

“…Meny 1 or Meny 2 (which is what they called set meals)…” (p. 93)

Hej då in Swedish to say good-bye at the end.” (p.93)

“…legitimation, which is what an ID card is called in Swedish.” (p.94)

”…Skandinaviska Enskilda Banken, the Scandinavian Individual Bank…” (p. 95)

Answers to Part 1

  1. She used it for everything that didn’t require a professional. She basically used it instead of a husband for fixing thing.
  2. She stopped for food along the way. She took him out to eat.
  3. It was located in a famous neighborhood with trendy restaurants and cafes.
  4. She made an amazing Swedish Christmas dinner for 40 people.

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