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Hannu Riikonen

H. K. (Hannu) Riikonen
Born August 3, 1948, Helsinki

Master of Arts (Roman literature) 1970, Licentiate 1972, PhD 1978 (comparative literature), University of Helsinki

Professor of comaparative literature 1997–, University of Helsinki
Acting teaching and research assistant in Roman literature 1971–74, University of Helsinki
Acting assistant professor of literature 1974, University of Jyväskylä
Part-time lecturer in comparative literature, 1974–79, University of Helsinki, Helsinki Summer University
Acting assistant professor of comparative literature 1975, University of Helsinki
Docent in the history of literature 1978–95, University of Helsinki
Acting assistant professor, assistant professor and acting professor of comparative literature 1979–93, University of Turku
Professor of comparative literature and aesthetics 1994–97, University of Helsinki
Head of the Department of Art Studies, 1998–2001, vice-dean of the Faculty of Arts 2007–09, University of Helsinki

Research themes:
Influence of Greek and Roman culture, the history of Finnish translations, the history of science and learning, Pentti Saarikoski, Olavi Paavolainen, James Joyce and Ezra Pound

Publications, research projects and other academic activity

First Class Knight of the White Rose of Finland, badge of merit for 30 years service, Silver Medal of the University of Helsinki
Member of the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters and the Finnish Society of Science and Letters

Written by H. K. Riikonen (Kaija Hartikainen, ed.)
Translated by Matthew Billington

Administration, Expertise and Organisations

H.K. Riikonen is one of those professors who use the waste bin and delete button to deal with memos on strategy and the like that come from administration, as well as with other paper work that is the result of the ever-expanding University bureaucracy. However, he feels that he has carried out his administrative duties by serving in such positions as the Head of the Institute for Art Research, member of the executive board of the East Central European, Balkan and Baltic Studies (ECEBB), and vice-dean, for three years, of the Faculty of Arts.

He has been involved in the activities of learned societies and organisations, among them the Finnish Literature Research Society, the Semiotic Society of Finland, the James Joyce Society of Sweden and Finland, and the Finnish Literature Society of Vyborg. These days he is active in the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters and the Finnish Society of Sciences and Letters

As a researcher with a keen interest in the developments of the humanities, professor Riikonen feels particularly honoured to have been invited as the representative of the Faculty of Arts to doctoral defences in several fields of study. This has also helped him gain a comprehensive view of the humanities in Finland.

Professor Riikonen has refereed many academic articles and books, and assessed the applications of researchers and writers at the Alfred Kordelin Foundation as well as for the Foundations’ Professor and Post Doc pools. More important than this, however, he considers public critique of research and non-fiction. Throughout his career he has written reviews for several magazines and journals in Finland.

Performing a civic duty in Tenerife. Photo from the home archive of H.K. Riikonen.


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