"Det är val i Sverige i år."

Translation:There is an election in Sweden this year.

November 26, 2014

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Some days it seems I forget almost everything I've learned. If there is AN election, why isn't "ett val" used?


It's an idiomatic thing. When we're speaking about the elections, we don't think of it as "an" election. It would be odd for us to think of it as "an election among many others" since it isn't. Instead, we think of it as a state of affairs. Much like we say Det är sommar, 'It is summer', Det är kväll, 'It is evening', without articles.


In Sweden, the parliamentary and regional elections are held on the same day. Therefore "val" can equally well be plural in this sentence.


Technically it can, but I would say "equally well" is a bit of an exaggeration. As a native speaker I 100% interpreted this as singular, the possibility of plural didn't even cross my mind. So I wouldn't call this sentence ambiguous even if it could technically mean both things.


Would 'det finns...' not work here?


In American English at least, we sometimes refer to year in which the quadrennial presidential election occurs as "election year." So if i wanted to specify that i might say "this is election year," or "this year us election year." But we have so many levels of government that we're almost always electing someone or voting for something.


My dictionary says that there exists the word "valår" in Swedish which - I assume - is the direct translation of election year..


You're right, we'd say Det är valår i år.


Jonathan606349, I'm guessing you have typos there and mean, "this is an election year" and "this year is an election year." But you're right that every year has some kind of election... ranging from school board members to president.


The Swedish sentence indicates that it's the year of elections this year, i.e. every forth year. The English translation only indicates that there's AN election this year, any kind of election. somehow this sounds wrong to me. How would you say in English?


West Coast USA: "the election" always refers to the presidential election where further context isn't provided. So I'd say "The election is this year".

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