Aberrations of Reason. Capitalist Rationality and its Critique in Juha Seppälä’s Novels Yhtiökumppanit (The Partners, 2002), Paholaisen haarukka (Devil’s Fork, 2008) and Mr. Smith (2012).
Juha Seppälä’s early literary works, published in the 1980s and in the early 1990s, usually described spiritually lonely men who suffered from an existential loss of meaning and serious alienation problems in the modern world. After this, Seppälä turned to deal with the transformation of the Finnish way of life and its cultural base, until after the turn of the new millennium he began to critically judge society’s ongoing marketization process. This study analyses his capitalism-critical works, particularly his novels Yhtiökumppanit (The Partners, 2002), Paholaisen haarukka (Devil’s Fork, 2008) and Mr. Smith (2012). These works do not, primarily, consider contemporary market capitalism from a class perspective, although this sort of perspective is also included in them. They are, above all, critical of market capitalist rationality. According to Seppälä, the basic problem of modern economic profit-seeking lies in the fact that in its unchecked form it is largely indifferent with respect to existential, moral, social and ecological values and principles. Free market economy or market capitalism has, therefore, a destructive influence on individuals, communities and ecological systems. The novels at issue emphasize that due to this it is also, in a deeper sense, incapable of producing existentially meaningful ways of life.Book Details
For the first time worldwide, this collection brings together analyses of the last two centuries of historical change around the shores and drainage basin of Lake Ladoga, Europe’s largest lake. The main focus of the narrative is the Northern Ladoga region, which was a Finnish administrative area between 1812 and 1944. After the Second World War, the entire shoreline of Lake Ladoga was incorporated into the northeast part of Russia’s border region, the Autonomous Republic of Karelia and the Leningrad Province.
The main theme uniting this collection is how the relationship between humans and nature is shaped by industrialization and modernization in society. Other key issues include protecting nature and perspectives on particular places and times, which are reflected in the methodological and thematic choices made in this volume.
The research framework set by the editor, Professor Maria Lähteenmäki, is the new lakefront history (Finn. uusi rantahistoria), focusing on approaches to environmental, economic and sensory history of lakes. To draw broad conclusions, on the one hand, the multilevel changes on the lakefront cannot be understood without knowledge of the history of the wider drainage basin, and awareness of the geopolitics of the region and the climate changes. On the other hand, the human relationship to natural waters has changed significantly in 200 years. Thinking in terms of economic benefit has gradually given way to principles of sustainable development. Lake Ladoga is also being redefined from a spatial perspective, as nationalist ownership of the region is coupled with global concern about the state of Europe’s largest lake.Book Details
Methods in Linguistics is a collection of articles presenting a broad variety of methods and approaches in the field of linguistics. It offers structure to the spectrum of methodological possibilities and helps the reader to identify the field of application as well as the strengths and weaknesses of different methods. The book consists of an extensive introductory part and a variety of articles, each written by experts of the method in question. It discusses questions related to different kinds of data and data collection, as well as methods used for analysing data. Since the methods used in linguistics are often related to a specific linguistic current, the book offers examples from a wide range of linguistic approaches.
The book is addressed to students, researchers and other readers interested in the methods used in linguistics. The general methodological and metatheoretical knowledge offered in the introduction guides the reader through the different methodological choices presented and helps the reader to select the best method to meet her needs. First, the research process is explained step-by-step from the selection of topic and data to questions related to research design, analysis and the reporting of the results. The second part of the introduction focuses on fundamental theoretical and methodological questions, such as the criteria for knowledge, the nature of scientific knowledge and the scientific method. The third part addresses more specifically the methodology of linguistics, discussing the multifaceted nature of natural language and linguistics as a discipline. The introduction also covers many current topics in science, such as research ethics, data protection and open science principles.
The book can be used as self-study material by students and researchers alike, or as course material in higher education. Learning is supported by the careful definition of terms, extensive indexes and additional readings suggested for each topic.Book Details
Gendered and sexualized abuse and other forms of violence are visibly present in the culture of the third millennium. Especially bodies that are gendered as female are – both dead and alive – objects of multiple forms of abuse and violence in the texts and imageries of contemporary culture. Men, on the other hand, are often represented as abusive towards women and as the violent gender or, as targets of other men’s violence. Structural violence has also an impact on many areas of everyday life, and it is materialized in, for example discrimination and inequality.
Gender and Violence: The Ethics and Politics of Reading scrutinizes gendered violence as a complex phenomenon of contemporary culture. The authors study the ways in which ways representations of violence can be read, viewed and received. They also discuss what kind of politics the violent representations implement and actualize, and how they affect their audience.
Gender and Violence takes a critical stance on the intersections of gender, power, and violence in literature, film, television and the internet. The analysis focuses on, for example, sci-fi, Nordic Noir and North American comedy series, poems, young adult literature (YA) and nationalist blog texts. The book presents both Finnish and international academic discussions, in which researchers in the fields of gender studies, arts and literature, and cultural studies challenge contemporary English abstract 279 understanding of gender, sexuality, power, and violence. Moreover, Gender and Violence provides tools for critical discussions on violence and in-depth scrutiny about its cost on all of us.
Gender and Violence is an anthology of academic research articles. It works well as an academic textbook, but it also provides timely and new knowledge for everyone interested in questions of gender and violence – phenomena that touch upon all of us.Book Details
When Aleksis Kivi’s (1834–1872) Finnish tragedy Karkurit (‘The Escapees’) was originally published in 1867 it was considered better than his two former plays, the Kalevalaic tragedy Kullervo (1864) and the comedy Nummisuutarit (‘Heath Cobblers’, 1864). Soon these encouraging views, however, turned completely opposite. Dismissing attitudes towards Kivi’s play were dominant until the 1960s when new theatre productions made its artistic merits worthy of consideration again. The critical edition of Karkurit gives a new and more versatile image of Aleksis Kivi as a playwright and helps to understand his tragedy in the light of the changing artistic ideals of different periods and generations.
The edition contains a scholarly edited and richly annotated text of the tragedy’s first edition. Expert introductions by leading authorities illuminate the multidimensional dramaturgy of the play and reflect its relation to the European drama traditions and the socio-historical context of 19th-century Finland. In addition, the introductory articles analyse Kivi’s pioneering blank verse dialogues and discuss how Karkurit was published and performed from the 19th century up to the present day.
The appendices include, among others, versatile text-critical apparatuses, an overview of the first Swedish dramatization of the tragedy (1872) and an earlier version of the play, an excerpt that was originally published in a magazine one year prior to the first edition of the drama.
Edith – Critical Editions of Finnish Literature
Edith editions are based on scholarly analysis of manuscripts, first editions and other historical sources. They reflect and clarify Finnish literary culture for scholars, teachers and other readers interested in literature.
Songs and writings: oral and literary cultures in early-modern Finland renews the understanding of exchange between the learned culture of clergymen and the culture of commoners, or “folk”. What happened when the Reformation changed the position of the oral vernacular language to literary and ecclesiastical, and when folk beliefs seem to have become an object for more intensive surveillance and correction? How did clergymen understand and use the versatile labels of popular belief, paganism, superstition and Catholic fermentation?
Why did they choose particular song languages, poetic modes and melodies for their Lutheran hymns and literary poems, and why did they avoid oral poetics in certain contexts while accentuating it in others? How were the hagiographical traditions representing the international medieval literary or “great” tradition adapted to “small” folk traditions, and how did they persist and change after the Reformation? What happened to the cult of the Virgin Mary in local oral traditions?
The first Finnish 16th-century reformers admired the new Germanic models of Lutheran congregational hymns and avoided the Finnic vernacular Kalevala-metre idiom, while their successors picked up many vernacular traits, most notably alliteration, in their ecclesiastical poetry and hymns. Over the following centuries, the new features introduced via new Lutheran hymns such as accentual metres, end-rhymes and strophic structures were infusing into oral folk poetry, although this took place also via secular oral and literary routes. On the other hand, seventeenth-century scholars cultivated a new academic interest in what they understood as “ancient Finnish poetry”.
The book has an extensive English Summary for the international readership.Book Details
City as a Stage explores the diverse ways in which modern cities of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries presented and projected themselves, especially by staging major urban events, which have often been interpreted as major local and national turning points. In particular, the book discusses how cities were imagined through the prism provided by other cities, major events, as well as alternative pasts and futures. How –with admiration, indifference or contestation– did various urban actors engage with the city as a stage? The book paints a multifaceted picture of the history of urban events and town twinning, while at the same illustrating how students and travellers experienced cities such as Berlin, Rome, Helsinki, and Tampere. As for individual urban events, Stockholm’s General Art and Industrial Exposition of 1897, Helsinki’s 400th anniversary of 1950, and the Moscow Youth Festival of 1957 are all given their own chapter.Book Details
This collection of essays looks at the issue of human well-being from the point of view of environmental aesthetics. Questions addressed include: What role do aesthetic values have in advancing well-being? Are there environments that are particularly supportive of well-being? What is the place of aesthetic factors in environmental and city planning? The authors of the first part of the book illuminate the relationship between aesthetics and well-being by discussing such notions and ideas as aesthetic well-being, interactive environmental planning, aesthetic quality in urban planning, aesthetic footprint, and ecological aesthetics. The authors of this part also engage with many topical questions in environmental and everyday aesthetics. For example, Yuriko Saito’s idea of green aesthetics as well as Allen Carlson’s science-based model of the aesthetic appreciation of nature are critically examined.Book Details
As the highest internal decision-making body within the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland, the General Synod began, from 1876, congregating in Turku every tenth, and then eventually, every fifth year. By the 1960s, this decision-making system was becoming unsatisfactory. An extensive project to answer to the general ideals of the era and to strengthen the efficiency and democracy of the Church administration was initiated.
The reformed General Synod got underway in 1974 with biannual gatherings. It was a body consisting of 108 members, including lay representatives, clergymen and the bishops. The General Synod retained its right to decide on ecclesiastical books and continued to hold the sole right to make proposals regarding the Church Act. A new task was to decide on the budget of the entire Church organisation and to steer the activities of the Church as a whole. Additionally, the General Synod received the general authority to handle any issues related to faith and doctrine, such as ecumenical issues.
The book Kansankirkko ristipaineessa (A national folk church under conflicting pressures) takes a close look at the General Synod representatives during the years 1974â2011 and clarifies who the members of the Synod were, how they were elected and what they achieved. The study examines which of these persons held the most power, and what types of coalitions stood out within the work of the General Synod.
In addition, the book aims to provide a general overall picture of the General Synod in relation to the Church, economic life, legislation, theological dialogue and the media. The study examines how well the intentions that drove the reform of the General Synod were realised and whether the General Synod was actually progressing as slowly or as briskly as expressed by different observers at different times.
Discussions surrounding female ordination, sexual ethics and ecclesiastical books indicate the position of the General Synod within an increasingly diversified society. During the first decade of the 2000s, the General Synod experienced a similar revolution in terms of values as it had when preparing the reform of the Synod around the turn of the 1960s and 70s. The Church began to find itself once again in a missionary situation.Book Details