Presentation of Summer School Teachers V: Nelli Routsalainen M.A.

Nelli Ruotsalainen, M.A. is one of the founding members of the Finnish Feminist Party and serves currently as one of the vice representative of the party to the Helsinki Municipal council. She has a BA in Women’s Studies from the University of Rhode Island and an MA in Gender Studies from the University of Helsinki. She is enrolled as a PhD student at the University of Helsinki  in the Gender, Society, Culture Doctoral Program.

Currently she works at Seta ry, the organization for LGBTQI rights in Finland. She has conducted several workshops on feminism and in this past year also completed a year long course on feminist pedagogies for the university setting. She is particulary  interested in the relationship between feminist activism and academia. This fall she will publish her first poetry collection that is deelpy grounded in making the personal poltical, but also making feminist theory accessible.

Nelli will hold two workshops at the summer school. One about the connection of feminist research and political activism and the second one about how to live a feminist life.


Last day of application!!!

Today is the last day to apply for the summer school, when you are not a student of the University of Helsinki (their deadline is the 20th of July).

There are also not very many places left. Be quick to get one of the last places at the “Feminist Research in Humanities and Social Sciences” summer school and join us in August in Helsinki.

Apply here:

Any question about content:

Cai Weaver.

Merle Weßel:

Questions about the application:


We are looking forward to meet you all very soon in Helsinki

Merle & Cai


Presentation of Summer School teachers IV: Dr. Josephine Hoegaerts

Dr Josephine Hoegaerts is associate professor at the Department of Culture at the University of Helsinki. She holds a PhD from the University of Leuven/ Belgium and has been visting researcher in Leipzig and Pennsylvania. Previously she was a core research fellow at the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies (2015-2017).

Currently she is PI of the CALLIOPE project. CALLIOPE studies how vocal performances in parliament have influenced the course of political careers and political decision making in the 19th century. It shows how politicians’ voices helped to define the diverse identities they articulated. In viewing parliament through the lens of audibility, the project offers a new perspective on political representation by reframing how authority was embodied (through performances that were heard, rather than seen). The project devises an innovative methodological approach to include the sound of the human voice in studies of the past preceding acoustic recording.

Her wider research interests concern the practices of articulation and embodiment that created modern citizenship in the nineteenth century. Her first monograph “Masculinity and Nationhood. Constructions of Citizenship in Belgium, 1830-1910” has been published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2014.  Further, she has published about aspects of the construction of the citizen self (i.e. masculinity, maturity, dignity, notions of authority and rationality).

At the summer school Josephine will give a workshop with the title “Masculinity, Men…and Feminism?”.

Presentation of Summer School Teachers III: Dr Saara Pellander

Dr. Saara Pellander is a post-doctoral researcher in political history at the University of Helsinki. She holds a PhD in political history from the University of Helsinki. Her PhD dissertation “Gatekeepers of the Family: Regulating Family Migration to Finland” (2016) explores the normative underpinnings of family migration in public discourses, in policies and their implementation.

Her postdoctoral research project, carried out as part of the GLASE research consortium, analyzes how borders are enacted and circumvented in the context of the family. Borders cut right through the intimate lives of transnational families, and familial ties are shaped by the public notion of belonging to a nation state. The research explores the effects of tightened family reunification policies on the lives of transnational families. It uses the theoretical notions of bordering and everyday security. It explores how everyday security is produced, and how insecurities feature in transnational families’ lives. It is based on interviews with migrants who are applying for family reunification in Finland.

Saara’s research interests include family reunification and family migration from an intersectional perspective, everyday security and migration, borders and memory, feminist postcolonial perspective to the Nordic welfare state, media representations of migration, governmentality of migration.  She has published about borders, migration and intresectionality in the Nordic context and the context of the Nordic welfare state.

At the summer school Saara will lead a session about feminist approaches to migration.

List of confirmed Summer School teachers – UPDATED

We are happy to confirm that the list of great teachers for the Feminist Summer School is still growing. The teachers range from academics, artists to politcal activists. We will continue to present to you the teachers and their works also individually. The next post will come soon.

Please find below the updated list:

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

Nelli Routsalainen, M.A.,  founding member of the Finnish Feminist Party  and her vice representative in the Helsinki Municipal Council, works at Seta ry (organization for LGBTQI rights in Finland), PhD student at the University of Helsinki

Presentation of Summer School teachers II: Dr Susanna Hast

Dr. Susanna Hast is an Academy of Finland postdoctoral researcher in the project “odies in War, Bodies in Dance” (2017–2020) at the Theatre Academy Helsinki, University of the Arts. She is also a singer-songwriter and movement pedagogue.

Her current research project examines the nexus between militarisation, movement, and social emotions. The research asks, how do choreography, rhythm and synchronised movement affect the emotions of compassion, shame and pride in Finnish international crisis management training and capoeira training at refugee camps. The societal aim is to raise awareness of the corporeal and emotional aspects of militarisation and help develop movement pedagogies which are socially, culturally and politically more sustainable.

She has published in English and Finnish in the field of International Relations about emotions, music and war.

Recently she published the book “Sounds of War. Aesthetics, Emotions and Chechnya” which combines music and literature to describe the war experience in Chechnya.

At the summer school Susanna Hast will give a workshop about alternative ways to do research with the help of music, art and dance.


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: