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Markku Henriksson

Markku Ilmari Henriksson
Born September 4, 1949, Helsinki

Bachelor of Social Sciences, Master of Social Sciences (political history) 1973, Licentiate 1985, PhD 1988, University of Helsinki

Professor of American studies, University of Helsinki, Renvall Institute (now the Department of World Cultures), acting professor 1996–99 and professor 1999–2004
History lecturer 1990–99, Department of History, University of Tampere
Deputy director 1990–92, Revall Institute, University of Helsinki
Research assistant of non-European history (for several separate periods) 1975–90, Institute for Historical Research and Documentation (later the Renvall Institute)

Publication activities

Awards and honours
D.Litt. (hon), York University, Toronto, 1995
First Class Knight of the White Rose of Finland 2004
Honorary member of the Western History Association (the first outside the US)
American Indian History Lifetime Achievement Award 2013 (the first and to date the only outside North America)
University of Helsinki Badge of Honour for long service 2013
University of Helsinki medal 2014
The International Council for Canadian Studies Certificate of Merit, 2014

Written by Olli Siitonen
Translated by Matthew Billington

Route 66

The most recent book by Markku Henriksson deals with the legendary Route 66, also known as the Mother Road. Perhaps the most famous road in the world, it traverses the country for about 2500 miles from Chicago to Los Angeles. The book, titled Route 66. A Road to America’s Landscape, History, and Culture (Texas Tech University Press) was published in 2014, and in it Henriksson examines the culture of the area and demonstrates the place of the Main Street of America in Americana.

The book is based on an interdisciplinary lecture series Henriksson organised, which was held not only in universities in Finland and the United States but also in countries such as Sweden, Estonia and Canada. In addition to a thorough knowledge of American culture and literature, the book relies on Henriksson’s travels along the route. The road became familiar to him when he travelled it east to west in 1996 and west to east in 2002. The book offers an overview of American culture along the route through an impressive collection of people, stories and music.

The foreword is written by Susan Miller, a writer and member of the Seminole tribe, who describes the book as a love letter from Henriksson to the most important road in America.

Publication event for Route 66 at Newport Beach, California, 2014


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