Margaret Kilpinen. Pianist, pedagogue, spouse
The biography of Margaret Darling Kilpinen (1896–1965) represents the fields of music history and women’s studies. It brings forth a woman who is of pliable but also strong character. She was active for over four decades in the musical life of Finland. What kind of professional role, combining performing and pedagogical work, was she able to build for herself? She was the wife of a well-known, strong-willed composer who had many ties to Germany, and also the mother of a daughter. How was she able to keep up her own artistry?Book Details
How to study politeness? Perceptions of Finnish and French politeness
Politeness is a key means by which we maintain interpersonal relationships. This book is the first comprehensive study of politeness in Finnish. Based on linguistic and pragmatic research, the book spans three parts. The first part is theoretical and historical, summarising three waves of politeness research, describing politeness as a cultural and historical phenomenon. The second part is empirical, providing an example of the study of im/politeness from outsiders’ perspectives—that, is French people living in Finland and Finns living or having lived in France. The focus group discussions ranged from definitions of politeness and differences of behaviour, to learning and teaching as well as to changes to politeness norms within society. The third part summarises the conclusions and offers an epilogue. This reader-friendly book includes exercises and recommended readings, and is welcomed by researchers and students working on politeness and, more broadly, relational work.Book Details
Tourism planning for the future: Responsible planning in culture–nature environments in Finland
Tourism must be planned and developed differently from what is customary today, as growth in rigid economic terms is still prioritised over the cultural and socioecological sustainability of lived-in cultural and natural environments. The global ecological crisis can no longer be ignored by tourism developers and investors – or by tourists.
The seventeen authors of this book are from a variety of disciplines and fields of expertise. Through research-driven and profession based knowledge on different aspects of tourism planning in Finland and elsewhere, they offer transformative perspectives and practical applications for responsible tourism planners, investors and political decision-makers to utilise.
Through the book’s overarching themes – learnings from the history of tourism planning, wellbeing, participation, building and architecture, people and infrastructure – it addresses a general audience, professional communities, and academic communities. The book’s urgent quest is to prevent tourism from remaining one of the causes for the greatest problem of all time, the worsening baseline of living conditions on Earth.Book Details
Folk tradition 2.0. Immersions into vernacular culture in the 21st century
In the 21st century, vernacular tradition has been emerging updated, hybridized forms. The increased availability of digital devices and resources has diminished the gap between professional production and folk culture. Digital technology and commercial productions have merged with grassroots practices, local identities, and personal expression. This book introduces analytical views of contemporary folklore as vernacular meaning-making and performance in interaction with digital technology and commercial productions. It focuses on various genres, such as internet memes, local rap music, video games, creepypasta, and stand-up performances. Central themes featured in the analyses include accelerated cultural circulation and reinterpretations, questions surrounding ownership and appropriation, technological agency, and the performance of cultural and personal identities.Book Details
The First-ever. Porthan statue by Carl Eneas Sjöstrand<
The nineteenth century has been called an age of monuments. In some places even one piece made a difference. This book is a study of the intellectual background and physical making of Finland’s first public sculpture, the statue of Professor Henrik Gabriel Porthan by Carl Eneas Sjöstrand. The idealised but sombre Porthan was born under the influence of German neoclassicism. Development on the project was slow but sure. The Swedish artist had to be supported over three years while he was putting together his first monumental piece in Munich and Rome, after which came another three years wait before the cast arrived to Finland. The bronze sculpture, commissioned by the Finnish Literary Society and raised by public subscriptions from people of all classes, was unveiled in the city of Turku in September 1864. Finns took some pride in the fact that, unlike other nations that had raised monuments to kings and generals, here the first place was given to a scholar. In this study Sjöstrand’s pioneering bronze is placed in a wider context and compared with works by his precursors and contemporaries in the international sculptor colony of Rome.Book Details
The Land of Hope. University students’ travelogues during the age of autonomy
Finland was an autonomous Grand Duchy in the Russian Empire during the years 1808–1917. At this time nationalism as well as other ideologies reached Finland from Europe, which strengthened the willingness to change both in society and on a governmental level. The Fennoman movement, which was a movement focusing both on language and on nationalism, became the core of the Finnish self-perception. The goal was to define Finland as a coherent and separate country in relation to its neighbouring countries. Collecting folk poems and learning to know one’s home country became essential. People saw the Kalevala poems as a way to understand and define the Finnish identity and the history of the Finnish people.
Especially young people with a background in academia were intrigued by these ideas. University students collected poems all over the Grand Duchy of Finland as well as in the Russian part of Carelia, in Sweden, Norway and in Ingria. Students who collected these folk poems also wrote travelogues about their travels and all this material was handed over to The Finnish Literature Society. These documents are unique and there has not been much research done on them, especially with the focus on how the young academic generation during the age of autonomy defined their home country, their national self-perception, themselves and the commoners living in the rural parts of the country.
This book reviews travelogues written by one hundred university students who travelled in the country collecting folk poems during 1836–1917. The book offers insight into how the students described Finland and what it meant to be Finnish. Travelogues can be defined as a sort of hybrid of texts. They consist of a mixture of letters, journals, biographical texts and travel books. Consequently, the image that the students depict of Finland is in this study based upon research perspectives and methods used in textual research, oral history and travel literature. The travelogues written by students previously evoked the interest of researchers who mainly studied certain traits of poem collectors, tradition bearers or poems. However, the travelogues contain plenty of information about the lives of the people who lived in the areas where the poems were collected.
The descriptions of Finland in the travelogues do not represent the “real” 19th century Finland, but instead it is a story written and created by university students. The characteristics that are presented in The Land of Hope are based on how the intelligentsia perceived “real” Finnishness as opposed to the uneducated commoners living in the rural parts of the country. The most notable themes in the travelogues are the state and the future of the society and of being Finnish. Another theme is the otherization of those who were uneducated commoners. These themes describe the fears and hopes that university students had about Finland. They also show us that the travelogues were ideological texts about Finland and Finnishness that united the collectors of folk poetry.
This book studies the collection of folk poetry in the context of the ideologies during the age of autonomy and it explains what the collection of poems meant and who were involved in it. Furthermore, the book gives an insight into the possibilities to pursue academic studies and it also presents the most essential sources of students’ knowledge about Finland at that point of time.Book Details
Live, Experience, Understand. The Life of Alex Matson
Alex Matson (1888–1972) is an important Finnish literary critic and essayist, whose literary reviews and collections of essays have made a vital contribution to the development of Finland's postwar literary generation. Born in Finland as the son of a sailor, Matson moved as a young child with his family to Hull in England, where he went to school. In the 1910s, he moved back to Finland, where he at first established himself as painter associated with the expressionist November Group, an important Finnish artistic movement at the time. In the interbellum, he moved from fine arts to literature. In the 1920s and 1930s, he published several novels, but more important was his work as transmitter of international literary ideas to Finland. Together with his first wife, Kersti Bergroth, he edited the literary journal Sininen kirja ("The Blue Book"; 1927–1930), which was inspired by the writings of John Middleton Murry and Katherine Mansfield. Sininen kirja is the most international literary journal in Finnish history to date and introduced Finland to the most significant modernist writers of the first half of the 20th century (Gottfried Benn, Jean Cocteau, Alfred Döblin, T. S. Eliot, Aldous Huxley, James Joyce, D. H. Lawrence, Katherine Mansfield, Paul Valéry, Virginia Woolf).
During the Second World War, Matson worked for the State Communications Agency, which was responsible for disseminating relevant information about Finland to other nations and for informing Finns of relevant developments abroad. It was also tasked with studying the prevailing mood among the population in Finland. In Matson's unpublished wartime diaries, one can see the first symptoms of a shift in Finnish culture away from Germany and towards Anglo-Saxon culture.
From the 1940s onwards, Matson recommended new English and American novels as a part of his work as reader for Finnish publishing houses, and he also translated works by Joyce, Hemingway and Steinbeck. With the help of a network of international literary critics, Matson became acquainted with New Criticism, which he introduced to Finland before it became established among academic researchers. He was often critical of academic literary studies, but his seminal essay works Romaanitaide ("On the Prose Novel"; 1947), John Steinbeck (1948), Kaksi mestaria ("Two Masters", on Tolstoy and Dostoevsky; 1950) as well as his impressive conversational skills were instrumental in introducing knowledge about the principles of the prose novel to several authors (including Väinö Linna, Lauri Viita, and Hannu Salama), and contributed to their views of literature. Matson emphasized the importance of reading and understanding high-quality literature for the wellbeing of society.Book Details
Humbuggery and madness. The reception of new art in the 1910s in Finland
If the artworld is a battlefield of meanings, the fortunes of discourse did not favour avant-garde art in Finland in the 1910s. The latest trends, introduced by German and Russian artists in three pioneering exhibitions in Helsinki in 1914 and 1916, were dismissed by the Finnish press as foolish and unworthy. This book researches the contemporary reactions and contents of these exhibitions. The works shown in Helsinki included masterpieces from artists such as Chagall, Jawlensky, Kandinsky, Marc, Münter and Rozanova. Today these works can be found in the collections of leading museums in Europe, Russia and the USA. From the Finnish perspective, the turndown in the 1910s proved effective and irreversible. Never again have the local collections had similar opportunities to make a purchase. The rejection of radical international developments and emphasis on narrow nationalistic views left Finnish art lagging behind. This trend was already apparent in 1917 in St. Petersburg, where the Finnish artists were celebrated but their paintings deemed sombre and superannuated.Book Details
Saint Mechthild’s Revelations
Mechthild of Hackeborn represents medieval mysticism. Her Revelations were written down in the 1290s in Helfta, Germany. The oldest surviving versions are in Latin, but in the Middle Ages, the Revelations were translated at least into Dutch, English, Swedish, and German. The text was translated into Swedish in 1469 by Jöns Budde, a Bridgettine brother from Naantali. Budde made few omissions but many additions in the text, mainly explanations to meet the needs of the Bridgettine sisters. Budde’s translation is faithful to the original text, and he made few mistakes. My Finnish translation of the text follows Budde’s version where possible. However, Budde translated an abridged version that omitted some chapters, and the only surviving copy of Budde’s translation is incomplete. I have therefore translated the missing sections from Latin and incorporated them in the text. My translation also includes editorial comments on the language, the contents, and the historical and theological contexts of the Revelations.Book Details
The Pleasure of the Text. From Reading a Picture to the Act of Writing
The book explores the discourses of modernism, contemporary art and art history writing as well as their interdisciplinary values and boundaries – and cases that do not fit within these boundaries.The articles explore the meanings of junk and relics, high art, design, and the intimate experience of art and public criticism. The themes explored in the book expand our views on the queer potential of colour, the meaning of detail, and the relationships between visual art and writing.
The fourteen peer-reviewed case studies in the volume offer new insights from the fields of visual cultural studies, art history and gender studies. The articles in the anthology do not rely strictly on disciplinary boundaries but also open themselves up to broader fields of culture.Book Details