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Tommi Uschanov

Tommi Petteri Uschanov
Born March 27, 1975, Kontiolahti

Studies in Theoretical Philosophy at the Faculty of Arts of the University of Helsinki, 1995–

Non-fiction author, 2008–
Freelance translator and publishing editor, 2002–
Research assistant at the Academy of Finland, 2001–3
Content creator of electronic study material at WSOY, 1999–2001
Assistant at Muutostehdas Oy, 1997–9

Hätä on tarpeen: kulttuuripessimismin nousu 1965–2015 (‘Neediness is needed: The rise of cultural pessimism 1965–2015’ – coming Fall 2015)
Miksi Suomi on Suomi (‘Why Finland is Finland’), Teos 2012
Suuri kaalihuijaus (‘The great cabbage hoax’), Teos 2010
Mikä vasemmistoa vaivaa? (‘What’s the matter with the Left’), Teos 2008
Wittgenstein in Finland: A Bibliography, niin & näin 2003

Photo: Heini Lehväslaiho
Written by Tommi Uschanov and Tero Juutilainen (ed.)
Translated by
Joe McVeigh

My Best Moments at the University of Helsinki

At the beginning of September 1995 I got my first Helka library card, which let me use the various libraries of the University: above all the Helsinki University Library (today the National Library of Finland) and the student library located at Leppäsuo (today the Helsinki University Main Library). It was all the more amazing because in those days, both libraries were open on Sundays as well. It felt too good to be true—and in the long run this sadly proved to be the case.

One of the reasons why I wanted to study at Helsinki was the University's excellent and comprehensive system of libraries. In my hometown of Joensuu, I had often browsed through the Linda database (today Melinda) and was constantly faced with the fact that some interesting publication I had seen referenced or reviewed elsewhere was only available in Helsinki. Now all these would be within my reach whenever I wanted. A real stroke of luck which I still have not gotten over.

It never fails to make me angry when libraries are lumped together with other services and spoken of in a vague and dismissive fashion as a mere “support service” for the University. Even though the availability of information outside physical libraries has been revolutionized over the last 20 years, without libraries there simply are no universities.

The south side study hall of the National Library of Finland. Picture by Ari Aalto, National Library.​
The south side study hall of the National Library of Finland. Picture by Ari Aalto, National Library.​


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