Languages, Culture & Society of Europe Sites- Top Ten

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Most of the languages of Europe belong to the family of Indo-European languages which are divided into a number of branches including Romance, Albanian, Celtic, Greek, Armenian, Germanic, Baltic and Slavic. Uralic languages such as Estonian, Finnish and Hungarian also have a significant presence, as do the Turkic, Mongolic, North Caucasian and Kartvelian languages with Basque standing apart. The Semitic languages include Maltese, Hebrew and Cypriot Maronite Arabic which are influenced by Latin, Yiddish and Greek respectively. The main scripts used in Europe today are Latin and Cyrillic with Greek having a script of its own. There are 23 official languages spoken within the European Union or EU and 6 semi-official languages with the principal ones being English, French, Spanish, Russian and German. The culture is rich and diverse with so many languages and countries contributing to the continent, each one providing its own individual personality, traits, traditions and history. With so many languages and participating countries in the EU, the Internet has become a valuable source for obtaining data for communication purposes and listed below are ten of the best sites for information on European Languages, Culture and Society.




1. Edinburgh University –

The University of Edinburgh has a division for European Languages and Cultures. The main subject areas are French, German, Hispanic Studies, Italian, Russian and Scandinavian Studies with details on all courses and the university itself being given on the site. A list of research centres is provided along with useful links and information for postgraduates, undergraduates and current students can be found. A special section is dedicated to the European Cinema with details of screenings, events and film festivals along with a research forum.




2. World Cinema ––literature–history-and-cultural-books


The site has a wide variety of European films and documentaries available to browse and buy on DVD with new releases coming soon to European cinemas mentioned. There are also sections for English Language DVDs, World Cinema and books, but the site concentrates mainly on European DVDs.  Each DVD is reviewed outlining the storyline so easy decisions can be made before deciding to purchase. DVDs are offered in French, German, Italian, Spanish, Dutch and Russian with links leading to European cinema blogs and online film resources.


3. University of Auckland –

The University of Auckland in New Zealand has a faculty of arts department offering courses in European Studies. Several courses are available in various stages and topics can be chosen from art, film, history, music, literature, politics and philosophy ranging from the ancient world to present day Europe. Prospectuses and handbooks are available with sections dedicated to teachers and students. Postgraduate courses and Ph.D degrees in European studies are also on offer with full details given on the site along with research centres.




4. Reading University –

The University of Reading has a department for studying European Literature and Culture and offers a degree with combining programmes. Study areas take into account literature from the Medieval Period to the present day and excellent research facilities are available at the university. Sections can be found on German, Italian and European studies with an online journal for French studies. Full details of the course and the university can be found on the site and a separate section can be opened for current students and staff.




5. Marked by Teachers –

Marked by teachers was especially designed by ‘The Student Room’ to help and assist students of all ages with study. The site has a section for European Languages and Literature and after signing-up to the site, which is only £4.99 per month, you will have instant and unlimited access to more than 600 essays on the subject. Essays can be searched by length with the most recently submitted being advertised. The essays are available in various European languages for GSCE, AS and A Level as well as university degree and international baccalaureate.




6. LSE –

The London School of Economics has courses available for European Literature and Society. The courses study how literature fits into the framework of global societies and politics using videos and archive recordings of authors with related trips to galleries and theatres whilst studying philosophical trends of the twentieth century. Full details of the courses, the university and foreign language programmes that are available can be found on the site with resources found in research centres, institutes, departments and libraries.





7. IES Abroad –

IES abroad offers you the chance of a programme in European Society and Culture in Vienna studying politics, history and business as well as culture. Instruction is in English and German and is available to students of all language levels. Topics of study are European Business, Politics and Economics, German, Society and Self and the Arts. Full details about the course can be found on the site along with details of student life, the housing and the programme dates that are on offer. Field trips available on the course are Auschwitz, Krakow, Budapest, Prague, Berlin, Dresden and Leipzig which are part-funded.




8. Wess Web –

The Wess Web is an online collection of texts from Western European Literature. Information can be found from European books, texts, sounds, videos and images which derive from many European museums, archives and libraries. Links and tools are provided for assistance and logging into the site is encouraged. It must be noted that some countries may have restrictions for viewing materials due to copyright.




9. Manchester University –

Manchester University has a School for Languages, Linguistics and Culture which offers the chance to study many European Languages through many different courses. Details regarding all the courses, their length, the requirements, the applications and the modules can be found on the site along with details of the university itself. The European Languages offered are French, German, Russian, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese. A special section indicates the research facilities on offer and further sections give details for graduates.




10. BNU –

The BNU has over 10,000 works on Slavonic and Eastern European languages within its collection. The site is connected to Strasbourg University in Austria and languages included in the collection are Russian, Ukrainian, Bulgarian, Slovakian, Serbian, Croatian, Polish, Slovenian, Czech, Bosnian, Albanian, Romanian, Hungarian and Latvian. Details about the services offered, the collections and the institute are available along with practical information and cultural activities.








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