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Centenary Lecturers

LOY Expanded for Finland 100

In recognition of the significance of the 100th anniversary of Finland’s independence in 2017, Finlandia Foundation expanded its Lecturer of the Year program in both duration and scope. From June 2016 through May 2018, five Centenary Lecturers, accomplished scholars who are experts in different fields, were available to speak to FFN chapters about topics directly related to Finland’s national independence and identity.

Thomas A. DuBois

Thomas A. DuBois

Thomas A. DuBois, the Halls-Bascom Professor of Scandinavian Studies and Folklore at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, has done extensive research on Finnish and Sámi culture, past and present. His talk focuses on “Finland and the Kalevala,” the national epic for the Finnish people.

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Sharon Franklin-Rahkonen

Sharon Franklin-Rahkonen

Sharon Franklin-Rahkonen, an associate professor at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, will discuss “The History of Finnish Independence” and factors that enabled a small, less developed corner of the Russian empire to declare and retain that freedom.

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Peter MacKeith

Peter MacKeith

Peter MacKeith, dean and professor of the University of Arkansas Fay Jones School of Architecture, traces the emergence, development and ongoing vitality of Finnish identity through a century of significant architecture and design in his talk, “A House of Finland.”

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Börje Vähämäki

Börje Vähämäki

Börje Vähämäki, who earned his Doctoral Degree from Åbo Akademi in Turku, directed the Finnish Studies program at the University of Toronto until his retirement in 2014. His topic addresses how the interconnected themes of Finnish film and literature help define Finnish identities.

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K. Marianne Wargelin

K. Marianne Wargeli

K. Marianne Wargelin is an independent scholar, researcher and author, and president of FinnFest USA. Finnish-American identity between 1850-2000 is the subject of her Ph.D. dissertation, now in its final stages at the University of Tampere. Her topic is “Beyond the Atlantic: Finland’s Independence Viewed from Across the Sea.”

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Lecturers at FinnFest

In the special Finland 100 year of celebrating a century of independence, FinnFest USA in Minneapolis in September 2017 provided a one-time opportunity for the five Centenary Lecturers of the Finlandia Foundation National Lecturer of the Year (LOY) program to appear jointly. 

A capacity crowd enjoyed the informative and entertaining 90-minute program, “Independent Finland: A North American Perspective,” moderated by FFN Trustee and Professor Emeritus Jon Saari, and featuring Centenary Lecturers Thomas A. DuBois, Sharon Franklin-Rahkonen, Peter MacKeith, Börje Vähämäki and K. Marianne Wargelin.

Copies of the DVD of this program are available for screenings hosted by FFN chapters. For information on borrowing a copy, contact Maria Voltaine at the FFN office at office@finlandiafoundation.org or (626) 795-2081.