Swedish School’s Big Lesson Begins with Dropping Personal Pronouns

John Tagliabue, New York Times, November 13, 2012

At an ocher-color preschool along a lane in Stockholm’s Old Town, the teachers avoid the pronouns “him” and “her,” instead calling their 115 toddlers simply “friends.” Masculine and feminine references are taboo, often replaced by the pronoun “hen,” an artificial and genderless word that most Swedes avoid but is popular in some gay and feminist circles.

In the little library, with its throw pillows where children sit to be read to, there are few classic fairy tales, like “Cinderella” or “Snow White,” with their heavy male and female stereotypes, but there are many stories that deal with single parents, adopted children or same-sex couples.

Girls are not urged to play with toy kitchens, and wooden or Lego blocks are not considered toys for boys. And when boys hurt themselves, teachers are taught to give them every bit as much comforting as they would girls. Everyone gets to play with dolls; most are anatomically correct, and some are also black.

Sweden is perhaps as renowned for an egalitarian mind-set as it is for meatballs or Ikea furnishings. But this taxpayer-financed preschool, known as the Nicolaigarden for a saint whose chapel was once in the 300-year-old building that houses it, is perhaps one of the more compelling examples of the country’s efforts to blur gender lines and, theoretically, cement opportunities for both women and men.

{snip}

The model has been so successful that two years ago three of its teachers opened an offshoot, which now has almost 40 children. That school, named Egalia to suggest equality, is in a 1960s housing project in the Sodermalm neighborhood.

{snip}

The result, after much discussion, was a seven-point program to alter such behavior. “We avoid using words like boy or girl, not because it’s bad, but because they represent stereotypes,” said Ms. Rajalin, 53. “We just use the name—Peter, Sally—or ‘Come on, friends!’ ” Men were added to the all-female staff. With Egalia, Nicolaigarden sought and obtained certification from an organization for gay and bisexual people that its staff is sensitive to their problems.

Criticism was not long in arriving. “There are a lot of letters, mail, blogs,” Ms. Rajalin said. “But it’s not so much arguments; it’s anger, basically.”

{snip}

At Stockholm’s immense brick town hall, the moderate-conservative coalition government fully supports the gender policy. “The important thing is that children, regardless of their sex, have the same opportunities,” said Lotta Edholm, the deputy mayor responsible for schools. “It’s a question of freedom.”

{snip}

  • http://countenance.wordpress.com/ Question Diversity

    Let’s see how long this gender neutrality insanity lasts when someone in the Swedish educational bureaucracy gets the notion that black African boys need higher self-esteem.

  • Allen

    Why bother with this nonsense? We could skip all the intermediate steps by sterilizing all the white people in Sweden and importing a million Third World Muslims and we will achieve the same result with less hassle.

    Maybe I should go to Sweden and try to start a Viking school where students learn Viking values and culture. Then my Viking school and their Egalia school can see whose students come out better.

  • NYB

    They won’t be teaching ‘Snow White’.

    Unknown to most, Snow White is an allegoric, pre-Christian folk tale of Germanic origin which retells the Nordic resistance to Roman influence and conquest.

    I pity these children who will be indoctrinated with faddish ideology instead of their own rich culture.

    • laager

      And what will become of the equestrian classic Black Beauty?

      • NYB

        The Anna Sewell novel has no racial angle. It’s a Victorian classic about a horse, and people who care about animals. I see no reason to single it out, unless it is to pillory Victorians.

        • GM (Australia)

          Only the totally loony left could get into a neurotic paranoid PC state of mind about either Black beauty or Snow White and call for them to be banned, and no doubt “Little Women” would send feminist educators into meltdown.They are great stories and my two daughters devoured them all, one was almost in tears with BB. Do kids still read these classics or are they now just fed dumbed down PC trash? (Incidentally neither of my two sons was interested in these stories)

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/NQHEAYZCMBOERHG2VZRDQ3YUSQ Felix

            “The Lorax” is banned in some elementary schools. I haven’t seen the book in years, but I hear it’s because he says, “Shut up!” in it.

    • gibs_me_dat

      They will thrive under Sharia law and make great parents to muslim mongrel babies.

    • Norman

      Indeed NYB! What about Cinderella? She was adopted by her step-mother after her father remarried that women when his wife (Cinderellas mother) died.

  • E_Pluribus_Pluribus

    38 minutes of superb viewing on the question of gender differences in interests. Norwegian journalist Harald Eia first interviews those in the it’s-all-in-the-upbringing [environment] camp (in Norway). Then he interviews those assign a major role the heredity, mostly in America and England:

    THE GENDER EQUALITY PARADOX
    NRK (Norwegian television)
    by Harald Eia (39 minutes)
    http://tinyurl.com/clmfeeb

    EXCERPT:

    PROFESSOR SIMON BARON-COHEN [of Oxford]: We looked at babies who were one day old . . . We presented them either with a mechanical object or a face to look at, and filmed how long does the baby look at these two objects. And we find that more boys look longer at the mechanical object and more girls looked longer at the face, even on the first day of life. So this is before toys have been introduced or various cultural biases or prejudices have been introduced.

    EIA [to viewers]: Baron-Cohen’s findings suggest that these differences are created before the children of born in the womb.

    BARON-COHEN: What we know is that boys and girls are producing different amounts of hormones, but particularly testosterone. The boys are producing twice as much testosterone as girls. This hormone testosterone influences the way the brain develops.

    EIA [to viewers]: How does he know that it’s the testosterone level that creates this?

    BARON-COHEN: We’ve measured the testosterone when the baby is in the womb and we’ve waited until the child is born and we’ve looked at their behavior. What we found is that the higher the child’s testosterone prenatally the slower they are to develop language when their small child and the less eye contact they make — again at the age of one or two years old. So more testosterone is associated with slower language development and slower social development.

    EIA [to viewers]: So many differences are the result of this similar testosterone levels. But what happens when the fetus of a girl receives too much testosterone?

    BARON-COHEN: It’s a traumatic condition where you produce too much testosterone. And girls with this condition show a very masculine pattern of toy preferences.

    • Sherman_McCoy

      Sounds to me like the Baron-Cohens are blessed with an exceptional amount of IQ. Ashkenazim, are they?

  • FourFooted_Messiah

    My husband and I were speculating if kids grew up on stories like Snow White today. I guess we were right, they don’t – thus they are missing out on many important lessons, to be replaces by vacuous ones of the sort taught by Barney the Dinosaur. We were discussing the many lessons we learned from such traditional stories, and wondered what on Earth kids were learning now.

    As for toys, I played with both an Easy-Bake Oven, as well as toy trucks. I had a Baby Alive (which I liked, though I otherwise tended to prefer plush animals over human dolls) as well as a kids’ carpentry set, and a microscope set. I was given to read everything from palaeontolgy and astronomy books to Uncle Scrooge and House of Mystery comic books along with superheroes. Perhaps kids should be introduced to BOTH halves of life, to find out what they are personally interested in, rather than being excluded from one or another for ideological purposes?

    • The__Bobster

      I never had an interest in girls’ toys and none of the other boys I knew did either.

      Well, there was one exception: a kid named Skippy.

      • FourFooted_Messiah

        And what’s wrong with that? Either way? Personal preferences are personal preferences. and should not be influenced by anything else. Isn’t that what personal freedom is supposed to be about? Freedom to find your OWN path?

        • GM (Australia)

          Perhaps this is a bit of an urban myth, but giving little girls toy trucks and dolls dolls to little boys has been tried at many kindergarten schools. The result apparently is that the little girls turn the tray of the truck into a bed for their dolls and the little boys end up turning the dolls into punching bags!

          • FourFooted_Messiah

            What I was getting at was offering a _choice_, not imposing an adult’s choice on the kid, and letting the kid do what they will with their choice.

            What they’re talking about here is no different than the old reversal – ie, not giving the girls to have the choice to have a doll, and not giving the boys a choice to have a truck is no different than denying the girl a truck or the boy a doll if they want one.

            Jeff Dunham has included lately in his act old family photos, in which he often appears with his first dummies. What if he hadn’t been allowed to have a ventriloquist dummy (a “doll”, as he often refers to them) as a kid because “dolls aren’t for boys”? He would probably have been a failure at everything else in life.

          • Michael_C_Scott

            You should have given him a GI-Joe, unless that is a politically incorrect “war toy”. Ken always had a goofy-looking smile.

            I have some pretty good injection molding equipment in the basement, so I have made 1/6 scale models of my wife’s Neverwinter Nights characters for our daughter. I took apart an old GI-Joe to copy the limb connections properly. Sayaka sewed the clothes, and I made the armor and swords.

            When Ariadne plays with the neighbor girls, they are looking for orcs.

          • Tom UK

            I’m broadly with you on that. I’d call myself a conservative libertarian- I think that given a free choice, most people of the same race and culture will prefer broadly similar things- a natural order is just that- natural. You don’t have to enforce it outside of the legal sphere. Of course, the White race has a long tradition of the eccentric- in a homogeneous society, you can accept him as one of your own, even if he/she does oddball things.

            When a society is atomised and loses that feeling of trust- through multiculturalism, multiracialism and all the other recent plagues, the eccentric will start to be seen as an outsider along with all the others- he may even end up being thought a traitor. Worse, he may even become a traitor, identifying with the strangers within our gate.

            I wouldn’t take personally the conservative expression of, say, Bobster- not to put words in his mouth, but like him I’ve seen that all too often that boy who plays with dolls grows up to be one of the elite who force the “new order” of liberalism on the rest of us. When there is an imposed, unnatural order, resistance to it is in the hands of both the libertarian and the conservative.

  • 5Sardonicus

    Radical feminism seems to go hand-in-hand with European Socialism, declining indigenous birthrates and deliberate population replacement by Third World immigration. Sweden seems to be undergoing a “Cultural Revolution” reminiscent of Mao’s China. In other words, the left has rejected Sweden’s traditional culture and folkways in an orgy of equalitarian and neurotic self destructive madness. They used to say that Socialism worked in Sweden; perhaps, it did, when the country was still racially Swedish. Today Sweden faces an uncertain future with the government leading the decline.

    • C_C_Conrad

      This has long been the goal of the Frankfurt School goofs.

      • Formerly_Known_as_Whiteplight

        Actually, this is not true. Henri Marcuse, the most viable exponent of that school and known as “The Father of the New Left” wrote a book called “Eros and Civilization.” The book basically said that capitalism suppresses the sexual lives of the poorest people and one way to rebel against it is to live extremely sexual lives. The Frankfurt school was a combination of Neo Marxism combined with Freudian psychology. The book was published in 1954 and was widely read by college students and beatniks alike. it was also read and expounded upon by well known counter culture figures such as Timothy Leary, Allen Ginsberg, William Burroughs, etc. It was a founding document of the so-called Sexual Revolution. There was certainly no effort made to rob males and females of their sexual identities. In fact, they relied on a strong sexual identity for the principles of their ideas to work.

        • The Verdict of History

          You distilled this quite well…

          • Formerly_Known_as_Whiteplight

            I did make one mistake. I have a tendency to want to name him Henri Marcuse when his actual first name was Herbert. It must also be admitted that he and at least one other prominent Frankfurt school members Emanuel Cellar (author of the 1965 Immigration and Naturalization Act) were Jewish. The school was dispersed because of Nazi pressure. These Neo-Marxists moved to the U.S. and carried on as if they were still in Germany fighting National Socialism. Also probably because they knew nothing else.

          • The Verdict of History

            Yessir — I’ve learned that they are the ones responsible for the promotion of

            “Cultural Marxism”, or the systematic and brazen critique of the core, timeless values of Western Society in the social sense. This program is fundamentally pseudo-intellectual and pseudo-scientific: Neo-Marxism employs the elements of Critical Theory and the now notoriously fraudulent methods psychoanalysis.

            It can also be defined as the replacement of western values with the values of clueless egalitarian utopianism and the hooliganism of the frankly queer left… it has infiltrated our press and media, pop culture/Hollywood/entertainment industry (which our children consume, our academic institutions (as you mentioned here). Moreover, it is the driving force behind the entirety of the social justice movement and the cadre of feminist fanatics, the racial self-victimhood movements…

            … and it now persistently advocates for the “cure” of western society through de-westernization by way of large scale racial displacement

            This the leftist strategy for the unmaking of EUROPEAN CIVILIZATION….

          • Formerly_Known_as_Whiteplight

            The web is even more tangled than that. One big problem is the failure of the right to percieve (at least in a practical enough manner) that Christianity and Judaism supports it in several critical ways. Anarchyst was telling me about how much better the 50s were, and they were in some ways, but the deeper causes of what came later were being laid down by the very people that were entrusted with preserving our ways of life and culture. If you want to and if you have enough courage, find a used copy of “Acid Dreams, The Complete Social History of LSD, the CIA, The Sixties and Beyond.” It was the result of over ten years of research and study of the CIA papers about various OSS and later CIA programs that began during WW2 and led to the chaos and social disintegration that groups like the Frankfurt School merely exploited.

    • Formerly_Known_as_Whiteplight

      I noticed for many years since I was around the place from the early 70s on, that lesbians were in the leadership chairs of every feminist meeting in Berkeley, CA and environs. It is they who seemed to be so good at getting straight women all worked up over the gender issues. The lesbians that I personally knew hated men, even as they befriended me, a man. I later learned why; they wanted me to go to parties with them where they worked so that they could hide the fact that they were lesbians. I didn’t go for it.

      • anmpr1

        It is a supreme irony that lesbians, individuals who are really anti-nature women, and in my experience, too, hate men, are often seen heading up so-called “women’s studies.” As if these misfit inverts could ever understand the feminine nature. But that is the upside-down world we inhabit, today.

  • Kronolog

    I doubt that this will spread outside the exclusive clique of “hyper-progressives” in the capital. Though I pity the poor kids of these avant-gardists, because it can’t be easy when they are inevitably released into the real world.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/MXTYFQZUWU2C7Q6WAHYPNNHCNU David Brims

    Sweden was one of the first countries to legalize porn, then in the 1990’s they banned Tom and Jerry cartoons from television for being too violent. It’s a wealthy country but a spiritual sick nation.

    • Sherman_McCoy

      Most European countries are “post-Christian.” This is why Islam is coming in to fill the vacuum (which, as we all know, nature abhors).

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/NQHEAYZCMBOERHG2VZRDQ3YUSQ Felix

        I abhor Islam, but I have now seriously begun to wonder if it isn’t preferable to the feminized societies now being foisted upon us by the PC eunuchs. Will the day one day come when we might side with them against the politically correct masters who betrayed our countries?
        Islam is openly violent, and although PC is gently violent, it forces you to lie in a thousand little ways every day and so destroys your soul.

        • Steel_Quake77

          When you find you have to lie because of PC, don’t totally reprove yourself.

          Imagine you are a WN secret agent. A pro-White James Bond if you will, deep under-cover fighting for the White Race.

          Secret Agents

          http://www.counter-currents.com/2010/11/secret-agents/

        • GM (Australia)

          You have made an interesting observation here. I have posted this comment previously; “The only (and I mean only) redeeming feature of Islam in the West is that it is a check and balance against PC insanity and radical feminism”

    • Jesse_from_Sweden

      No, they didn’t ban Tom and Jerry cartoons.

      Sweden had a film censorship agency, but the last film they censored was the Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

      And the agency was removed sometime in the 90s, so nothing is banned or censored on TV (other than stuff that are criminalized, like child pornography).

      If the Tom and Jerry cartoons were removed, then that was a decision from the television companies.

  • kjh64

    How is the term boy or girl a sterotype? That is just plain silly. Both sexes can have the same opportunites and respect in society, which I support, without such silliness and lack of common sense. The truth of the matter is you can’t erase nature.

  • gibs_me_dat

    The point of these policies is to eradicate prejudice and intolerance by punishing children who notice differences and speak the truth.

    Western civilization is now just an incubator of psychosis and schizophenia. No wonder birth rates are falling, drug abuse and gay sex is increasing. We are dysgenic because it fits the environment we live in today.

  • loyalwhitebriton

    It is not just happening in Sweden. The Liberal Democrat party, which is the party of our Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg (Ha Ha), has proposed a motion to eradicate reference to gender on all birth, marriage, and death certificates. For real. Apparently, gender is interchangeable and non-fixed. Apparently. The White Western world is going to Hell in a Handcart; the main agents of our demise being other whites. The whole situation is tragic, really.

    • Sherman_McCoy

      I don’t know about seeing who “likes” you, but if I happen to be on a page with one of your comments, you can pretty well be assured that mine will be one of the “likes.”

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/MXTYFQZUWU2C7Q6WAHYPNNHCNU David Brims

    It’s no surprise that socialists / marxists don’t like the Brothers Grimm fairy tales, they deal with good and evil, right and wrong, being virtuous. That’s an anathema to the atheist Left, they believe in ” not being nice ” and ” intolerance. ” They don’t have any concept of real evil in the world .

    The Swedish ruling elite were caught up in the 1960’s Cultural Revolution, drug use, sexual liberation, contempt for Christianity, and they are the ones who are in government now.

  • Queequeg

    Check out http://www.thelocal.se in their nightlife galleries. The pics are of young Swedes out in clubs. Gorgeous Nordic women posing together, sometimes kissing each other and effeminate Swedish guys posing together…Egalitarianism is one of the most destructive lies ever foisted on humanity. How vile it’s advocates!

  • http://www.newnation.org/ sbuffalonative

    Who thinks of these things? Who sees pronouns as a problem that needs to be fixed?
    As Shakespeare said, ‘A rose by any other name would smell as sweet’.
    You can call a dog a cat but it’s still a cat. You can call a girl ‘friend’ but she’s still a girl and everyone will recognize her as a girl.

    Why is policy set by the mentally ill?

  • French_reader1

    Gender theory went straight to schoolbooks for children in France. Certainly, I understand that some people can have sexual identity issues, but I believe that it is criminal to stimulate those penchants.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q3CGtYhaxSU

  • shmo123

    The Swedes are creepy, and politically correct to the point of insanity. They will soon lose their country to immigration though. Fools.

  • Don Smith

    A salient feature of schizophrenia at the personal level is the loony sense that one can
    change reality by omitting the language used in common by others and by using one’s own
    version of language. When whole nations start going loony, it’s likely to boost land prices
    in much of western Nebraska, western Kansas, and the panhandles of Texas and Oklahoma.

    • Sherman_McCoy

      So many people in the Western world are on anti-depressants because the world just doesn’t make sense any more.

  • (GM) Australia

    Will this gender-less education thrust extend to schools catering for Sweden’s substantial Somali and Muslim population?

  • Pelagian

    Jonathan Swift would have so loved this.

  • Pelagian

    It is no coincidence that Catholicism was driven out of Sweden almost 500 years ago, Sweden only disestablished its state religion in 2000 and has the smallest non-Catholic population in Europe today (1.62%).

  • http://profiles.google.com/eladsinned dennis dale

    “There are a lot of letters, mail, blogs,” Ms. Rajalin said. “But it’s not so much arguments; it’s anger, basically.”

    Yeah, because it’s not so much sane; it’s madness, basically.

  • Panzerfaust

    Sweden looks to be feminizing at a faster rate than the white’s in the United States are.

    • plaintruthforidiots

      Why did you put an apostrophe in ‘white’s’? It isn’t difficult to understand.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000050689622 Andrea D. Ruthless

    fag nation

  • Steel_Quake77

    What is wrong with Sweden?

    Is there something in those Swedish meatballs?

    As someone who is half-Norwegian I see almost zero resistance from Swedes, whereas us Norwegians can at the least claim Men of Action such as Varg Vikernes and Anders Breivik. (*note: serious academic White Advocate Dr. Kevin MacDonald takes Breiviks ideas serously. http://www.theoccidentalobserver.net/2011/07/the-political-ideas-of-anders-behring-breivik/ )

    At least there are some signs of life out of Norway!

  • James Flower

    Anybody who knows anything about Sweden knows its the most insanely left-wing liberal nation on the face of this planet and they are destroying themselves because of it. Sweden will be a non-white European nation in the next 50 years, incredible.

    • David Ashton

      Perfect example of the fools’ paradise.

  • ncpride

    The result, after much discussion, was a seven-point program to alter such behavior.

    This goes much deeper than which kid plays with what toys. There is a very sinister agenda here, and its not about equal opportunity. When they start talking about approval from ‘gay and bisexual’ groups and ‘feminists’….That’s really all you need to know.

  • WR_the_elder

    What about what’s happening in the United States? I find that the generic use of “he” and “his” has been almost entirely supplanted by “they” and “their”, even if the singular is intended. Reading modern prose to someone who has been taught correct grammar is like hearing fingernails scratch across the blackboard all the time.

  • WR_the_elder

    I am reposting this because my earlier post seems to have vanished:

    What about what’s happening in the United States? I find that the
    generic use of “he” and “his” has been almost entirely supplanted by
    “they” and “their”, even if the singular is intended. Reading modern
    prose to someone who has been taught correct grammar is like hearing
    fingernails scratch across the blackboard all the time.

    • GM (Australia)

      The “Style Manual” for most businesses and government departments these days specifies “gender neutral” language for all official documents and communications and the courtesy title Ms being almost mandatory.

  • Magician

    This shocked me

    A refugee from Somalia stole crown jewels from the Swedish royal family, so he can sell the jewels for cash. The jewels are lost forever,

    http://goo.gl/rvCLz

    http://goo.gl/rjdd3

    And then the refugee from Somalia is still not deported!!

    • François

      I think this shows how weak Swedish society has become.

  • ywrsdfc

    The Feminist in Sweden do it again!

    Now if only we could get our Feminist to outdo theirs!

    I mean just going after pronouns seems lame.

    They should be going after nouns (names).

    In fact I don’t see why men don’t start wearing dresses.

    Or the fact that we have *gasp* SEGREGATED bathrooms based upon gender?!

    The scars must be horrendous for all those who identify as a different gender being prevented based upon genitalia. Not only them but society as a whole is in agony over the stereotypes and generalization we still have!

    This is 2012!

    I’m sure Liberals head would implode knowing that our public restrooms are an example of institutionalized sexism. Both men and women are the same and shouldn’t be restricted by society based upon gender.

    I’m sure Feminist will answer the call of progress.