Presentation of the Summer School Teachers I: Dr. Antu Sorainen

Antu Sorainen, PhD, is a Docent in gender studies at the University of Helsinki. She holds a PhD in women studies/ criminal law and a M.A. in cultural anthroplogy/ law, criminology and lesbian studies, both from the University of Helsinki.

Her main research interests are Wills and Inheritance; Kinship; Gender Studies; Queer Theory; Law, Gender and Sexuality; Queer Kinship; Intimacy; Sexual Criminal Law; Cultural Anthropology; Alternative Pedagogies; Decency; Conceptual Changes; Queer Criminology; Politics of Pedophilia; The Figure of Child; Pornography in Culture.

She has published widely in the fields of Law, Gender and Sexuality; Sexuality in Culture; and Queer Theory and History.

Antu Sorainen was a visiting researcher at the University of Birkbeck, University of Leeds and University of Keele.

Currently, she is the leader of a 4-year Academy of Finland Research Project “CoreKin – Contrasting and Re-imagining Margins of Kinship” (2016-2020) and Principal Investigator of the 5-year Academy of Finland Research Project “Wills and Inheritance Arrangements in Sexually Marginalised Groups” (2014-2019).

At the summer school Antu Sorainen will provide us with a walking with the title “Oral Histories: A Queer Walking Tour of Kallio” through the working class district of Helsinki, Kallio.

Official information and links

I hope everyone is having a great start of the week!

The application deadlines are approaching fast: External students 26th of June, Helsinki-students 20th of July.

To make the application for everyone as easy smoothly as possible attached again the offical flyer for our summer school and also the link to the Helsinki Summer School website, where you can find all information about the application, fees, accomodation etc.

In case, you have any questions about the course cotent, contact Merle (  or Cai (

If you have questions about the application, accomodation etc, contact

We are happy to help!

Feminist Research in the Social Sciences and Humanities


The organizers of the summer school…

We organizers, Cai Weaver and Merle Weßel, would like to use this blog page to introduce ourselves to you.

We met in 2014 when we both were first year PhD students at the University of Helsinki. Cai was studying in political science and Merle Nordic studies. We met in a workshop which introduced students how to study sexuality.

Cai’s PhD project “Gays, Perverts, Degenerates and Democratic Values: The Governance of Sexuality in Putin’s Russia”, which is in its final stages, on issues of Biopoliticial Governance, (Homo)Sexuality, and Russia. He holds a BScEcon in International Relations and International History from the University of Aberystwyth and a M.Soc.Sci. in International Relations of the University of Tampere. His further research interests are Feminist Research Methods, Nationalism, International Relations Theory, and Gender and Politics in Video Games.  He has taught courses on the Bachelor and Master level at the University of Helsinki.

Merle works as a assistant professor in Nordic history at the University of Greifswald. She defended her PhD thesis “An Unholy Union? Eugenic Feminism in the Nordic Countries, 1890-1940” in March 2018. She holds a B.A. in history and literature studies from the University of Bielefeld and a M.A. in European Studies from the University of Helsinki. Her main research interests are gender history, intellectual history and medical humanities. She has published about issues of castration of homosexuals and sex offenders as well as race.

If you have any questions, please free to contact:

Cai Weaver:

Merle Weßel:



Course Schedule finalized!

The course schedule is finalized. Minor changes might still occur for organizational reasons. The focus of the program is on the students, their own projects or research ideas, and the interaction of the students with each other and with the teachers. The summer school provides a mixture of workshops with guest lecturers, workshops in which the students work in groups on their own research guided by the teachers and social events, which stimulate networking and invite the students through non-academic events, like art exhibitions or walking tours, to connect their research to public discourses.

Click here to see the entire course schedule:

Course Schedule


Confirmed teachers for the summer school

Already a great amount of  awesome feminist scholars from various fields have agreed to teach at the summer school. See a selection below:

Dr. Antu Sorainen, Academy Research Fellow, Gender Studies, University of Helsinki

Dr. Susanna Hast, Researcher, Sing-Songwriter, Movement pedagogue, Political Science, University of Helsinki

Dr. Saara Pellander, Academy Research Fellow, Political History, University of Helsinki

Prof. Dr. Anu Lahtinen, Professor in Finnish and Nordic History, University of Helsinki

Dr. Josephine Hoegaerts, Department of Cultures, University of History