Northern Memory and Identity (multidisciplinary course, spring 2014)

Northern Memory and Identity

University of Oulu, Spring 2014


Several teachers; responsible teacher of the course: Pekka Kuusisto (

Time and place: Thursdays 10-12, PR 102. Scope: Intermediate studies:  

 010133A 6 pts / Advanced studies 010133A 10 pts

(The course can be used to replace many course options in several subjects, for example in History and 687115A “Marginality and Multiculturalism” in Literature)


Objectives: The aim of this multidisciplinary course is to introduce students to the many facets of research on cultural memory and identity in the North. Combining the viewpoints of such fields as history, archaeology, literature, the arts, indigenous cultures and linguistics, the course covers a wide range of mental images that people have of their past and their identity. Looking at how cultural memory is transferred and transformed, the course challenges old notions of history, temporality and memory. In a series of lectures the course examines different versions of the past: the official and the unofficial past, the mental and the material past, and the factual and fictive pasts. The course helps the student to understand how these coexist in people’s minds, identities and interactions.

 Course outline:


6.2.   Introduction / The idea of the North (Kuisma Korhonen & Nina  Työlahti)

13.2.   Cultural memory studies: towards multidisciplinary dialogue  (Kuisma Korhonen)

20.2. Archaeology – material memory of war (Timo Ylimaunu)

27.2. Memory in religious art (Sirpa Vähäaho-Kuusisto)


(no lecture on 6.3.)


13.3. Memory and literary history of Northern Finland (Ilmari Leppihalme)

20.3. Northern memory and identity in the information age (Henry Oinas-Kukkonen)

27.3. Memories of the North in the Works of Rosa Liksom (Kasimir Sandbacka)

3.4.   Re-writing arctic orientalism (Juha Ridanpää)

10.4. Continuities and Gaps in Sami Memory (Veli-Pekka Lehtola)


(no lecture on 17.4.)


24.4. Final Symposia - Student Papers (exact program later)

8.5. (if needed…)


Study materials: Lecture notes and selected reading

Assessment method:

For intermediate studies (6 pts): 3 essays of 5-7 pages each, based on the topics of lectures.

For advanced studies (10 pts): in addition to the above, the student participates in the Final Symposia and makes a short presentation on an additional topic to be agreed with the person responsible for the course.


Grading: 0-5

Person responsible: Pekka Kuusisto

Language of instruction: English

Essays can be written in English, Finnish or Swedish


Contact information:

Responsible for the course:

Pekka Kuusisto:


Kasimir Sandbacka:;

Nina Työlahti:

Timo Ylimaunu:

Henry Oinas-Kukkonen:

Juha Ridanpää:

Veli-Pekka Lehtola:

Sirpa Vähäaho-Kuusisto:

Ilmari Leppihalme:

Viimeksi päivitetty: 11.1.2017