The Henrik Stenius Lectures

Thursday, May 30, 2013 at 14:30

University of Helsinki, Siltavuorenpenger 3 A, auditorium 107

The Finnish historian Henrik Stenius, founding member of the History of Concepts Group and chair of Concepta, founder and research director of Helsinki's Centre for Nordic Studies (CENS), is retiring this summer. The Centre for Nordic Studies is happy to invite you to a seminar in which we will, once and for all, solve the questions that Heku has been dealing with throughout his remarkable career as a researcher and a research director. While the questions may appear provocative or even comical, they are to be taken seriously as they are central to everyday academic exchange.

The seminar will be arranged in the spirit of Heku. Accordingly, we will hear 12 presentations, 6–8 minutes each. After each presentation there is time for two questions or comments. The presentations, in English, Finnish or Swedish, are organised in three different sessions:

1. What does it take to be truly international?

What is the difference between being a European in Finland and a European from Finland? How does one successfully act within international arenas? Why are many international branding strategies infantile? Presentations by Professor Norbert Götz, Dr Stefan Nygård, Professor Risto Alapuro and Docent Peter Stadius.

2. What defines a Homo Nordicus?

What makes the Nordic creature Nordic? Is it the legacy of Lutheranism, the burden of conformism, the tradition of voluntary organisation, or the practices of Nordic co-operation? Is Norden best described as a historical region, a concept or as a conceptual universe? Presentations by Docent Mary Hilson, Professor Pauli Kettunen, Professor Pia Letto-Vanamo, Docent Marja Jalava and M.Soc.Sc. Heidi Haggrén.

3. What makes a translation correct?

How can we avoid unfortunate misinterpretations of key concepts? What is a translation culture? Are some cultures more receptive to translations than others? What happens to concepts when they are imported to new contexts? Presentations by Docent Jussi Kurunmäki, Professor Kari Palonen and Professor Martin Burke.

The presentations will be followed by a reception at around 18:00.

Please let us know by May 20 if you intend to participate (

Organising committee: Malte Gasche, Mathias Haeggström, Pirkko Hautamäki, Jani Marjanen, Johan Strang and Mirja Österberg.

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