Oiva Ketonen
Humanist of the day

Oiva Ketonen

During his career Oiva Ketonen influenced a great many Finnish students’ world-view and approach to philosophy. This can partly be attributed to using his works as the basis for the entrance examination, but clearly also to his approach more generally, a combination of humanism and naturalism. As well as practising philosophy, Ketonen was long influential in various university working groups, and his contribution is evident in both Finnish academia and the current model for universities of applied sciences.

Oiva Ketonen

Oiva Toivo Ketonen
Born January 21, 1913, Teuva. Died September 3, 2000, Helsinki.

Master of Arts, 1938, Doctor of Philosophy (Theoretical Philosophy), 1944, University of Helsinki

Professor of Theoretical Philosophy 1951–77, University of Helsinki
Rector 1961–65, Vaasa Summer University
Visiting Professor 1966–67, University of Wisconsin
Assistant to Professor Eino Kaila 1948–51

Academician, 1980

Photo: Helsinki City Museum
Written by Tero Juutilainen
Translated by John Calton

Oiva Ketonen’s research career started with his dissertation Untersuchungen zum Prädikatenkalkül ‘Studies on predicate calculus’ (1943), which offered interesting results about a relatively new as well as unknown subject for Finnish philosophy community. It presented modern formal logic, which had been brought to the attention of Finnish philosophers by…

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