[Ura-list] Anna-Leena Siikala in memoriam

Johanna Laakso johanna.laakso at univie.ac.at
Sun Feb 28 08:03:22 UTC 2016

Dear URA-LIST Community,

the day of Kalevala and Finnish culture began with sad news: Professor Anna-Leena Siikala has passed away at the age of 73 years.

Most of us probably know at least the name of Anna-Leena Siikala, retired professor of folkloristics at the University of Helsinki, as one of the leading experts of the shamanism and mythology of Uralic peoples. In her fieldwork and publications, she covered a thematically and geographically wide area from Polynesia to Siberia, from ethnography to folk poetry and the anthropology of religion. (More about her can be read, for example, on the website "375 humanistia" (in Finnish): http://375humanistia.helsinki.fi/humanistit/anna-leena-siikala .) 

Her academic merits are too numerous to be listed here, but I would really like to highlight her tireless championship of minorities, small-numbered peoples, their endangered cultures and languages, and in general her ability to cooperate across borders, support and encourage international collaborations.

A slender white flame shining bright in the darkness of cultural oppression, ignorance and oblivion of our roots – Anna-Leena Siikala's memory will be cherished by all of us who work for the Uralic minority cultures and languages.

Univ.Prof. Dr. Johanna Laakso
Universität Wien, Institut für Europäische und Vergleichende Sprach- und Literaturwissenschaft (EVSL)
Abteilung Finno-Ugristik
Campus AAKH Spitalgasse 2-4 Hof 7
A-1090 Wien
johanna.laakso at univie.ac.athttp://homepage.univie.ac.at/Johanna.Laakso/
Project ELDIA: http://www.eldia-project.org/ 
VIRSU network: http://www.univie.ac.at/virsu/ 

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