In defense of Dr. Erika Sarivaara

Erika Sarivaara erika.sarivaara at
Tue May 7 09:25:27 UTC 2013

Dear Forum,

I have chosen to not dignify Professor Sammallahti’s attacks on the
integrity of my research and my character in this forum or anywhere else
for that matter. I stand by my research as one of many truths. If anyone on
this list is interested in hearing my perspective, I will welcome direct
and respectful questions and inquiries.
I am a mother of three young children and therefore respectfully ask that
people keep this in mind when contacting me by phone or when waiting for an
email response from me. I look forward to constructive dialogue on the
meaningful and beneficial issues of our research and work in the fields of
pedagogy and sociolinguistics.

Best regards

Erika Katjaana Sarivaara

2013/5/7 Pekka Sammallahti <pekka.sammallahti at>

> Dear receivers,
> While I strongly disapprove of sending this circular by people who seem to
> be unaware of what is going on on the ethnic and ethnopolitical scene in
> Finland, let me make known that a detailed review of Sarivaara's thesis
> will be presented.
> Let me also make it known that Sarivaara has been a leading figure in the
> fight against Saami self-determination in Finland and that her thesis is
> constantly used as a weapon in this fight. It is thus appropriate to treat
> it also as a political document and deal with its inadequacies and
> absurdities such as "non-status Saami" by the way of ironic humor.
> Pekka Sammallahti
> PhD, Professor emeritus of Saami Language
> Quoting Scheller Elisabeth <elisabeth.scheller at>:
>  Dear Erika Sarivaara, members of the URA-list, and other research
>> colleagues
>> Over the last couple of weeks, we have been made familiar with the
>>  content of some discussions on Prof. Pekka Sammallahti's Facebook  site
>> concerning Dr. Erika Sarivaara and her PhD thesis  Statuksettomat
>> saamelaiset  <**samall/bitstream/URN:NBN:no-**
>> bibsys_brage_30768/1/**erikanettiversio18%206.pdf<>>
>> Paikantumisia saamelaisuuden rajoilla<http://brage.bibsys.**
>> no/samall/bitstream/URN:NBN:**no-bibsys_brage_30768/1/**
>> erikanettiversio18%206.pdf<>>
>> (2012). In general, Sammallahti's site is none of our business and way
>> beyond our interest. However, the current discussions of Sarivaara and her
>> work signal such a striking absence of common decency that we find it
>> necessary to point out the  following:
>> In case anyone forgot: Sarivaara's thesis has been evaluated by a
>>  scientific commitee of competent people in her field of research,  and it
>> was accepted. Obviously, Sammallahti and some of his Facebook  friends find
>> some aspects of Sarivaara's thesis problematic. That is  not problematic at
>> all. What is problematic though, is their totally  disrespectful way of
>> making fun of Sarivaara and her research in a  semiofficial forum on the
>> Internet. Even her mental health has been  called into question.
>> In fact, the comments on Prof. Sammallahti's Facebook site say  nothing
>> at all about Erika Sarivaara. What they do say, is that some  people who
>> find themselves in front of the research field they  pursue, seem to lack:
>> 1) social media competence, and 2) basic  understanding of research ethics.
>> In the future, we hope that the important questions that our  colleague
>> raises in her thesis will be discussed in the  professional, scientific,
>> and, last but not least, respectful way  that Sarivaara, like any other
>> researcher, deserves.
>> Thanks.
>> With kind regards,
>> Elisabeth Scheller
>> PhD Student in Saami sociolinguistics
>> University of Tromsø
>> elisabeth.scheller at<**mailto:elisabeth.scheller at uit.**no<elisabeth.scheller at>>
>> Åse Mette Johansen
>> PhD Student in Nordic languages
>> University of Tromsø
>> ase.mette.johansen at<**mailto:ase.mette.johansen at uit.**no<ase.mette.johansen at>
>> >
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