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René Gothóni

10.4.1950, Helsinki

Master of Theology 1973 and Doctor of Theology 1983 (study of religions), University of Helsinki

Professor of Comparative Religion at the University of Helsinki 2003-

Senior Lecturer in Comparative Religion 1984-2003; acting Professor of Comparative Religion 1985; Clare Hall Visiting Fellow, Cambridge, UK 1989-90; acting Professor of Comparative Religion 1993-94; Director of the Orthodox Monasticism and Society project funded by the Academy of Finland 1993-96; acting Professor of Comparative Religion 1995-97; Docent of Comparative Religion 1996-2001; Professor of Comparative Religion 2001-03 (fixed-term)

Publications, research projects and other academic activities
Research topics: comparative religion, specialising in comparative and empirical research on religious traditions

Photo: Veikko Somerpuro
Written by René Gothóni and Riitta-Ilona Hurmerinta (ed.)
Translated by John Calton

Active in academies of science, society and recreation

René Gothóni is a life member of Clare Hall College, Cambridge from 1990. He is also a life member of the Finnish Society of Science and Letters (since 1992), as well as the secretary of the humanities section (since 1996) and has been a member of the board between 1996 and 2007.

Gothóni was a member of the advisory board of the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters between 1998 and 2013. He is also a member of the board of the Federation of Finnish Learned Societies and was the chairman of the publication centre between 2003 and 2012.

In addition to his fictional works, he has been active as a columnist and expert commentator on Finnish state radio. He was also involved in the organisation of the well-received Athos Exhibition at the Helsinki Art Museum in 2006.

He has produced two educational films, one about the lives of Sri Lankan monks and another about the Athonite monks. In 2010 the Swedish-language Yle Fem television channel (formerly FST5) produced a documentary film about his research on Mount Athos called ‘Till Athos med René Gothóni’ (‘To Athos with René Gothóni’).

In his free time, Gothóni has written and composed songs, which he has released on three CDs: ‘René Gothóni Nostalgic 1966-1971’ (2010), ‘Glimtarna är livet’ (‘Life in a glimpse’) (2011) and ‘How Are You Today?’ (2013). He is currently working on two new recordings. Music samples of the song ‘My Own City’ and from the ‘How Are You Today’ were released on September 29th 2013.

Photo: Timo Peltonen, René Gothónin yksityisistä kokoelmista (© 2011 René Gothóni)​​
Photo: Timo Peltonen, René Gothónin yksityisistä kokoelmista (© 2011 René Gothóni)​​


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