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Leena Lehtolainen

Leena Katriina Lehtolainen
Born March 11, 1964, Vesanto.

Bachelor of Arts, 1988 (Finnish literature), Licentiate in Philosophy, 1995, University of Helsinki

Acting assistant and acting lecturer, 1990-91, Department of Finnish Literature), University of Helsinki
Manager, the Tapiola Choir, 1988-1990
Cashier 1982-83, the Finnish National Opera's staff restaurant

Publications, awards and special accomplishments:
Over 20 novels, collections of short stories, essays, columns
Vuoden johtolanka ('The Clue of the Year') award 1997
City of Espoo literature award 2000
Hyvää päivää – God Dag ('Good Day') award 2004

Photo: Thomas Whitehouse
Written by Leena Lehtolainen, Kaija Hartikainen (ed.)
Translated by Johanna Spoof

My dreams

For me, the university has always been a place where you seek knowledge for the sake of knowledge. Not, for example, for financial gain. My own subject, literature, does little to improve the national economy, nor does it have to.

I dream that universities are allowed to keep focusing on fostering knowledge. That they would not just be concerned with the rate of student throughput, or with what study points, but instead go on believing in the value of a broad education. In a frenetic and frantic world the university could be an oasis based on eternal values: truth, morality, beauty. On humanism in short, without which humankind would be reduced into machines.

Statues in the University main building. Photo: Mika Federley.​
Statues in the University main building. Photo: Mika Federley.​


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