That’s not a typo! Read on.
Hygge, which roughly translates to ‘a quality of cosiness’ – may be the most appropriated Danish word of the past decade, but it’s samfundssind that’s really come to define the nation in the era of Covid-19.
If hygge is something you practice with people you know, samfundssind is more of a behaviour towards those you might not know. Rarely used until just a few months ago, it’s now entered the Danish vernacular in an explosive way.
Like hygge, there’s no direct English translation of samfundssind. Marianne Rathje, senior researcher at the Danish Language Council, says you can think of it as putting the good of the greater society above your own personal interests.Mark Johanson. August 3, 2020. A word buried in the history books helped Danes mobilise during the pandemic, flattening the curve and lifting community spirit.
It should be clear that the title of this post is most assuredly NOT grammatically correct.
However, the message behind it is sincere.
I think that we can learn a lot from the Danish.
Simply put, America needs some samfundssind up in here!
It’s not always about individual rights and freedoms; especially when those “rights and freedoms” infringe on the health, safety and welfare of others.