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Lively hour-long presentations on a variety of Nordic subjects. 


Organized by Nordic Northwest’s Friday Night Lecture Series Committee

All Friday Night Lecture Series is at 7:30pm, in person at Nordia House and streamed live on Nordic Northwest’s YouTube channel. Sign up for either an in-person presentation or join us online! Small receptions and shows of additional materials will accompany some talks. The exhibit hall is open during the presentations for you in person viewing pleasure.

Image by Metin Ozer

Once You Cross the Atlantic, You're Always on the Wrong Side: Reflections on the Dilemma of Immigration  

April 7, 2023, 7:30 PM to 8:30 PM

with hosted reception following lecture

Doors Open at 7:15 PM

Nordia House & Online




What draws so many to the lands of their ancestors? Why do so many Americans have a longing to identify with a faraway place they may know little about? In the words of scholar David Eric Jessup, “The Scandinavian-American pathos is not unique, but it is real … there is a drop of sadness and an ache for something far away that is almost impossible to grasp.” The son of a Norwegian immigrant, Erik Brakstad, explores trends, traditions, and how the desire for identity remains a force to be reckoned with.

More about our speaker, Erik Brakstad

As a twelve-year-old, two weeks at Camp Nidaros, a Norwegian language camp on the Oregon Coast, awakened what has become a lifelong passion. For many of the next 40 summers he attended, staffed, or directed language camps in Washington, Oregon, Minnesota, Norway, and Switzerland. He spent a gap year at Follo Folkehøyskole in Vestby, Norway. After graduating from Reed College, he returned to Sandane, Norway for the next two summers to teach Norwegian to Americans. Erik worked on a farm for a season in SE Norway, and spent a winter working at a monastery in Finland.

Erik directs Skogfjorden for Adults, a twice-yearly program in Norwegian language and culture in Bemidji, Minnesota. While he still maintains his general contracting business, Erik’s primary focus is Tivnu, a social justice construction skills gap year program. Erik engages his students in hands-on projects that address Portland’s houselessness crisis. For Erik, sharing Norwegian language and culture with his two children has been an ongoing source of connection and affirmation. 


Refunds: All ticket sales are final.


Parking: We encourage guests to use public transportation or ride-sharing services. Our 50-space parking lot is open on a first come, first-served, basis and limited street parking is available on SW 89th & 90th Avenues.


Accessibility: Nordia House has two accessible parking spots in our main lot facing SW Oleson Rd. Both the main entrance facing SW Oleson Rd. and our side entrance facing SW Taylors Ferry Rd. are wheelchair accessible. All restrooms have accessible stalls but no power doors. We will do our best to accommodate your needs upon arrival. Please call 503-977-0275 or email to arrange further assistance.

Request a list of our selected recorded lectures (1999-2019) available for loan for NNW members, or view a list of archived lectures and other educational films here.

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