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  • Vaahtera, Jouni (Helsingin yliopisto, 2009)
    The present dissertation analyses 36 local vernaculars of villages surrounding the northern Russian city of Vologda in relation to the system of the vowels in the stressed syllables and those preceding the stressed syllables by using the available dialectological researches. The system in question differs from the corresponding standard Russian system by that the palatalisation of the surrounding consonants affects the vowels much more significantly in the vernaculars, whereas the phonetic difference between the stressed and non-stressed vowels is less obvious in them. The detailed information on the local vernaculars is retrieved from the Dialektologičeskij Atlas Russkogo Jazyka dialect atlas, the data for which were collected, for the most part, in the 1940 s and 1950 s. The theoretical framework of the research consists of a brief cross-section of western sociolinguistic theory related to language change and that of historical linguistics related to the Slavonic vowel development, which includes some new theories concerning the development of the Russian vowel phonemes. The author has collected dialect data in one of the 36 villages and three villages surrounding it. During the fieldwork, speech of nine elderly persons and ten school children was recorded. The speech data were then transcribed with coded information on the corresponding etymological vowels, the phonetic position, and the factual pronunciation at each appearance of vowels in the phonetic positions named above. The data from both of the dialect strata were then systematised to two corresponding systems that were compared with the information retrievable from the dialect atlas and other dialectological literature on the vowel phoneme system of the traditional local vernacular. As a result, it was found out (as hypothesised) that the vernacular vowel phoneme system has approached that of the standard language but has nonetheless not become similar to it. The phoneme quantity of the traditional vernacular is by one greater than that of the standard language, whereas the vowel phoneme quantity in the speech of the school children coincides with that in the standard language, although the phonetic realisations differ to some extent. The analysis of the speech of the elderly people resulted in that it is quite difficult to define the exact phoneme quantity of this stratum due to the fluctuation and irregularities in the realisation of the old phoneme that has ceased to exist in the newest stratum. It was noticed that the effect of the quality of the surrounding consonants on the phonetic realisation of the vowel phonemes has diminished, and the dependence of the phonetic realisation of a vowel phoneme on its place in a word in relation to the word stress has become more and more obvious, which is the state of affairs in the standard language as well.
  • Lehtinen, Sanna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2015)
    This study examines the complex relation between spatial experience and aesthetic experience. It is argued that spatial experience specifically in the context of everyday spaces makes it possible to experience them aesthetically as well. A wide selection of research ranging from environmental and philosophical aesthetics to architectural theory, psychology, human geography, and other relevant disciplines is employed in order to achieve a more detailed picture of how spatial experience is formed in the first place. This experience is described mainly in terms of phenomenology but is then related to other ways of understanding experiences and their prerequisites. Different notions of space and spatiality and a more comprehensive articulation of the relation of perception to spatial experience, sensory perception, and how senses contribute to spatial experience are in the focus of attention at the beginning of the study. Different experiential layers that can be distinguished within the space which is closest experienced are explored. Interaction with environment is discussed and the notion of preaesthetic is presented to clarify the relation between the two different types of experiences. Following this, the notion of preaesthetic is studied against eminent notions such as aesthetic attitude and aesthetic engagement that show elements that have traditionally been considered to either lead to or define aesthetic experiences. This study shows that the effect that spatial experience has on revealing aesthetic potentialities in everyday environments is far more complicated than has previously been understood. Due to its contingent qualities, spatial experience sometimes leads to "failed" aesthetic experiences even in situations where there is obvious aesthetic potentiality. Even though there are some overlapping qualities in spatial and aesthetic experiences, they cannot thus be equated, as has more or less been done in different branches studying the topics of art and architectural experiences, for example. In the final part of the study, some possible directions for future research are pointed out and the application possibilities of these new developments in aesthetic theory are presented by short case studies, in which a closer look is taken into a chosen set of urban everyday spaces.
  • Lahtinen, Susanna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2015)
    The study is concerned with the interaction between Robert Boyle's experimentalism and medicine. Boyle made an attempt to establish his kind of experimental philosophy as the basis of of medicine. At the same time, however, medicine offered him a model of a discipline which, unlike other learned disciplines, embodied several notions of experiment and ways of writing about experiment. Boyle's involvement in medicine was a complicated exchange of ideas and practices. On the one hand, medical literature and the medical notions of experiment had an impact on his experimental philosophy. On the other hand, however, he also applied his own ideas about experiment and its function to his medical work. In this study, Boyle's medical writings of various kinds, such as recipe books, natural historical works and treatises discussing medical practice, theory and medical reform are explored. I examine these works to find out what kind of activities were called experiment on the one hand, and to explicate the functions of experimental texts in Boyle's medical writings, on the other. To do this, I approach Boyle's medical works from several viewpoints. First of all, I examine Boyle's role as a medical author and place his medical writings in the immediate context formed by contemporary medical literature. Secondly, I explore the different kinds of texts Boyle wrote on the basis of medical experiments and the functions these texts have in his published works. Finally, I examine what these texts tell us about the nature of his experimental activities. My dissertation advances an argument about Boyle's experimentalism and method. I seek to show that contrary to what has often been presumed, Boyle applied no single experimental method in his experimental activities but, instead, that his experimentalism embodied experimental methods of various kinds. His writings do not define experimentalism as a method but rather as a particular kind of approach to natural knowledge. Moreover, the manner in which Boyle's medical works describe his experimental activities shows that there hardly was much method in his manner of working. Hence, this study presents his medical experimentalism as a somewhat disorderly effort and suggests that Boyle's experimental philosophy embodied no single and consistent methodological doctrine.
  • Piitulainen, Jussi (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    A straightforward computation of the list of the words (the `tail words' of the list) that are distributionally most similar to a given word (the `head word' of the list) leads to the question: How semantically similar to the head word are the tail words; that is: how similar are their meanings to its meaning? And can we do better? The experiment was done on nearly 18,000 most frequent nouns in a Finnish newsgroup corpus. These nouns are considered to be distributionally similar to the extent that they occur in the same direct dependency relations with the same nouns, adjectives and verbs. The extent of the similarity of their computational representations is quantified with the information radius. The semantic classification of head-tail pairs is intuitive; some tail words seem to be semantically similar to the head word, some do not. Each such pair is also associated with a number of further distributional variables. Individually, their overlap for the semantic classes is large, but the trained classification-tree models have some success in using combinations to predict the semantic class. The training data consists of a random sample of 400 head-tail pairs with the tail word ranked among the 20 distributionally most similar to the head word, excluding names. The models are then tested on a random sample of another 100 such pairs. The best success rates range from 70% to 92% of the test pairs, where a success means that the model predicted my intuitive semantic class of the pair. This seems somewhat promising when distributional similarity is used to capture semantically similar words. This analysis also includes a general discussion of several different similarity formulas, arranged in three groups: those that apply to sets with graded membership, those that apply to the members of a vector space, and those that apply to probability mass functions.
  • Vuorisalo-Tiitinen, Sarri (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    This work analyses texts on indigenous women´s participation in the Mexican Zapatista Army, Ejército Zapatista de Liberación Nacional. The EZLN came to public attention after ten years of clandestine organization in 1994 in Chiapas, a southern state of Mexico neighboring Guatemala. Along the invasion of various municipalities in Chiapas, the Zapatista Army published their own Revolutionary Laws, directed to the Mexican government that included a section on women´s own laws. The indigenous women´s participation in a guerrilla movement in the economically poorest area of Mexico raised many questions among Mexican feminists and some of them fiercely criticized the laws for not being liberating or feminist at all. The question is, did the indigenous women want the laws to be feminist? To answer the main research question How is the position of women constructed in the Zapatista discourse? I analyze texts by various actors in the discourse within the theoretical framework of critical discourse analysis and the feminist theories of intersectionality. The connecting point in this interdisciplinary framework is the question of power and hegemony. The actors in the discourse are the women commanders themselves, the men commanders, the Zapatista spokesperson, subcomandante Marcos and the Mexican feminists. The texts analyzed are the letters of the EZLN to the media and discourses in public reunions, first published in Mexican newspapers and international discussion lists on the Internet and after 2005, on the Zapatista´s own webpage. The results show that instead of discussing whether the Zapatista women´s participation is feminist or not, the action itself provoked such wide discussion of the diversity within the feminist movement that it is a contribution itself. The work also shows that the use of language can be one tool in the quite recent paradigm of intersectionality in feminist theories.
  • Elomäki, Anna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2012)
    The feminist we, which during the first and second waves of feminist political organizing had a natural basis in women, became a theoretical and political problem in the late 1970s. In this study, I examine efforts to replace the earlier idea of women as the collective subject of feminism with more nuanced visions of the feminist we. I refer to these efforts, which continue right down to the present, as the discussion on feminist political togetherness. While the criticism of feminist politics based on women s identity has become a well-documented part of the recent history of feminist thought, the efforts to provide alternative conceptualizations of the feminist we remain less known. The present study gives visibility to the alternatives proposed by theorists such as Gloria Anzaldúa, Judith Butler, Adriana Cavarero, Jodi Dean, bell hooks, Maria Lugones, Chandra Mohanty, and Linda Zerilli, and suggests they can contribute to other ongoing discussions in the field of political theory about political bonds in diverse and unequal societies. I examine the discussion of feminist political togetherness from three perspectives. First, I focus on the exact concepts used in the debate. Thus far, feminist theorists have not created new concepts for theorizing the feminist we ; they have given new meanings to established terms, such as identity, coalition, and solidarity. Second, I turn my attention to the theoretical resources used and focus on visions of collective feminist politics based on Hannah Arendt s concepts. Since the 1990s, Arendt s thought has been the main theoretical resource in the discussion of feminist political togetherness and Arendtian visions of the feminist we form a distinct strand in this debate. Third, I discuss five themes that have persisted in this discussion for decades. Their persistence reveals that even though feminist theorists use different vocabularies and theoretical resources to address the problem of the feminist we, the solutions they provide are similar. Most draw attention to sustained, but open political bonds across difference and privilege, bonds that have to be actively created and maintained and that enable political action in the context of diversity and inequality. My study suggests that the visions of the feminist we from the late 1970s down to the present offer an explicitly feminist understanding of political commonality, which takes into account the diversity of groups, intersecting oppressions, fragmentation of individual subjectivity, and differences in power and privilege. This understanding, which I call feminist political togetherness, differs from other recent visions of political community in the field of political theorizing.
  • Knuuttila, Sirkka (2009)
    Marguerite Duras (1914−1996) was one of the most original French writers and film directors, whose cycles are renowned for a transgeneric repetition variation of human suffering in the modern condition. Her fictionalisation of Asian colonialism, the India Cycle (1964−1976), consists of three novels, Le ravissement de Lol V. Stein (1964), Le Vice-consul (1966) and L'amour (1971), a theatre play, India Song (1973), and three films, La Femme du Gange (1973), India Song (1974) and Son nom de Venise dans Calcutta desért (1976). Duras’s cultural position as a colon in inter-war ‘Indochina’ was the backdrop for this “théâtre-text-film”, while its creation was provoked by the atrocities of World War II and post-war decolonisation. Fictionalising Trauma analyses the aesthetics of the India Cycle as Duras’s critical working-through of historical trauma. From an emotion-focused cognitive viewpoint, the study sheds light on trauma’s narrativisation using the renewed concept of traumatic memory developed by current social neuroscience. Duras is shown to integrate embodied memory and narrative memory into an emotionally progressing fiction. Thus the rhetoric of the India Cycle epitomises a creative symbolisation of the unsayable, which revises the concept of trauma from a semiotic failure into an imaginative metaphorical process. The India Cycle portrays the stagnated situation of a white society in Europe and British India during the thirties. The narratives of three European protagonists and one fictional Cambodian mendicant are organised as analogues mirroring the effects of rejection and loss on both sides of the colonial system. Using trauma as a conceptual prism, the study rearticulates this composition as three roles: those of witnessing writers, rejected survivors and colonial perpetrators. Three problems are analysed in turn by reading the non-verbal markers of the text: the white man as a witness, the subversive trope of the madwoman and the deadlock of the colonists’ destructive passion. The study reveals emotion and fantasy to be crucial elements in critical trauma fiction. Two devices intertwine throughout the cycle: affective images of trauma expressing the horror of life and death, and self-reflexive metafiction distancing the face-value of the melodramatic stories. This strategy dismantles racist and sexist discourses underpinning European life, thus demanding a renewal of cultural memory by an empathic listening to the ‘other’. And as solipsism and madness lead the lives of the white protagonists to tragic ends, the ‘real’ beggar in Calcutta lives in ecological harmony with Nature. This emphasises the failure of colonialism, as the Durasian phantasm ambiguously strives for a deconstruction of the exotic mythical fiction of French ‘Indochina’.
  • Nygård, Stefan (Helsingin yliopisto, 2009)
    The study examines the debate in Finland at the beginning of the 20th century surrounding the philosophy of Henri Bergson. Both within as well as outside of academic philosophy Bergsonism was adapted to the philosophical and cultural landscape in Finland by a process of selective appropriation. The ambiguous relationship between the sender and the receiver is accentuated in reference to philosophical celebrities such as Bergson, whose reputations spread more quickly than the content of their philosophy and whose names are drawn into the political and social discourse. As a philosophical movement the aim of Bergsonism was to create a scientific philosophy of life as an alternative to both idealism and modern empirical and antimetaphysical currents, during a period when European philosophy was searching for new guidelines after the collapse of the idealistic system philosophies of the 19th century. This reorientation is examined from a Finnish viewpoint and in the light of the process of intellectual importation. The study examines how elements from an international discourse were appropriated within the philosophical field in Finland against a background of changes in the role of the university and the educated elites as well as the position of philosophy within the disciplinary hierarchy. Philosophical reception was guided by expectations that had arisen in a national context, for example when Bergsonism in Finland was adjusted to a moral and educational ideal of self-cultivation, and often served as a means for philosophers to internationalize their own views in order to strengthen their position on the national stage. The study begins with some introductory remarks on the international circulation of ideas from the point of view of the periphery. The second section presents an overview of the shaping of the philosophical field at the turn of the 20th century, the naturalism and positivism of the late 19th century that were the objects of Bergson s critique, and an introduction to the attempts of a philosophy of life to make its way between idealism and naturalism. The third and main section of the study begins with a brief presentation of the main features of the philosophy of Bergson, followed by a closer examination of the different comments and analyses that it gave rise to in Finland. The final section addresses the ideological implications of Bergsonism within the framework of a political annexation of the philosophy of life at the beginning of the 20th century.
  • af Hällström-Reijonen, Charlotta (Helsingin yliopisto, 2012)
    The aim of the study is to investigate the use of finlandisms in an historical perspective, how they have been viewed from the mid-19th century to this day, and the effect of language planning on their use. A finlandism is a word, a phrase, or a structure that is used only in the Swedish varieties used in Finland (i.e. in Finland Swedish), or used in these varieties in a different meaning than in the Swedish used in Sweden. Various aspects of Finland-Swedish language planning are discussed in relation to language planning generally; in addition, the relation of Finland Swedish to Standard Swedish and standard regional varieties is discussed, and various types of finlandisms are analysed in detail. A comprehensive picture is provided of the emergence and evolution of the ideology of language planning from the mid-19th century up until today. A theoretical model of corpus planning is presented and its effect on linguistic praxis described. One result of the study is that the belief among Finland-Swedish language planners that the Swedish language in Finland must not be allowed to become distanced from Standard Swedish, has been widely adopted by the average Finland Swede, particularly during the interwar period, following the publication of Hugo Bergroth s work Finlandssvenska in 1917. Criticism of this language-planning ideology started to appear in the 1950s, and intensified in the 1970s. However, language planning and the basis for this conception of language continue to enjoy strong support among Swedish-speaking Finns. I show that the editing of Finnish literary texts written in Swedish has often been somewhat amateurish and the results not always linguistically appropriate, and that Swedish publishers have in fact adopted a rather liberal attitude towards finlandisms. My conclusion is that language planning has achieved rather modest results in its resistance to finlandisms. Most of the finlandisms used in 1915 were still in use in 2005. Finlandisms occur among speakers of all ages, and even among academically educated people despite their more elevated style. The most common finlandisms were used by informants of all ages. The ones that are firmly rooted are the most established, in other words those that are stylistically neutral, seemingly genuinely Swedish, but which are nevertheless strongly supported by Finnish, and display a shift in meaning as compared with Standard Swedish.
  • Mattfolk, Leila (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    The study describes and analyzes Finland Swedes attitudes to modern-day linguistic influence, the relationship between informants explicitly reported views and the implicit attitudes they express towards language influence. The methods are primarily sociolinguistic. For the analysis of opinions and attitudes I have further developed and tested a new tool in attitude research. With statistical correlation analysis of data collected through a quantitative survey I describe the views that Swedish-language Finns (N=500) report on the influence of English, on imports, and on domain loss. With experimental matchedguise techniques, I study Finland-Swedes (N=600) subconscious reactions to English imports in spoken text. My results show that the subconscious reactions in some respects differ markedly from the views informants explicitly report that they have: informants respond that they would like English words that come into Swedish to be replaced by Swedish replacement words, but in a matched-guise test on their subconscious attitudes, the informants consider English words in a Swedish context to have a positive effect. The topic is further dealt with in interviews where I examine 36 informants implicit attitudes through interactional sociolinguistic analyses. This study comes close to pragmatic discourse analysis in its focus on pragmatic particles and modality. The study makes a rather strict distinction between explicitly expressed opinions and implicit, subconscious attitudes. The quantitative analyses suggest that the opinions we express can be tied to the explicit in language. The outcome of the matched-guise test shows that it is furthermore possible to find subconscious, implicit attitudes that people in actual situations rely on when they make decisions. The discourse analysis finds many subconscious signals, but it also shows that the signals arise in interaction with one s interlocutor, the situation, and the norms in the society. To account for this I have introduced the concept of socioconscious attitude. Socioconscious attitudes reflect not only the traditions and values the utterer grew up with, but also the speaker s relation to the social situation (s)he takes part in.
  • Pikkarainen, Merja (Helsingin yliopisto, 2015)
    This study analyses the language use of non-native speakers of Finnish and non-native speakers of Russian by exploring the joint activity by two or more participants in authentic conversations. More specifically, the present focus is on word searches, collaborative productions and candidate understandings. Although these structures have been claimed to be similar phenomena, they also have different characteristics. The data of this study consist of approximately 11 hours of naturally occurring conversations in a range of everyday and institutional situations in Finnish and Russian. The methodological framework adopted for this analysis is interactional linguistics, which focusses on analysing the language use in naturally occurring interaction. Interactional linguistics can be defined as a part of linguistics that originates from different types of functional orientations (conversation analysis, functional linguistics, and anthropological linguistics). However, the main analytical tools for this study are provided by the methodology of conversation analysis. A typical collaborative production consists of a preliminary component that is produced without any specific hesitations or perturbations, and of a final component that fits syntactically, prosodically and semantically with the preliminary component. For example, a preliminary component can consist of a subject and verb combination and a final component contains a complement (in a broad sense). A typical word search can be initiated with pauses or hesitations, or with specific questions. In these cases, the co-participant is considered to be a knowledgeable partner. When comparing collaborative productions and word searches, the candidate understandings fall somewhere in the middle. Interactionally, candidate understandings are used to check the recipient s interpretation of the prior and to maintain mutual understanding. All three types of joint activity emphasize the willingness of the participants to cooperate and the fact that although the language used is foreign to all of the participants, the interaction need not be problematic. On the contrary, it would seem that since no native speakers are present, the conversations become relaxed. The data shows that the resources of these two lingua francas are utilised somewhat differently. The Finnish data consist of proportionally more searches that concentrate on grammatical issues than the Russian data. On the other hand, candidate understandings are more common in the Russian data. These differences can be due to the participants different linguistic backgrounds. The lingua franca speakers of Russian may have a more native-speaker relation to the Russian language in that they do not consider the grammatical appropriateness to be as important as the lingua franca users of Finnish.
  • Virkkula, Johanna (Helsingin yliopisto, 2014)
    This study explores reasons for first name choice for children using a survey carried out in two places: Zagreb, the capital of Croatia, and Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. The outcomes of the analysis are twofold: reasons for name choice in the two communities are explored, and the application of survey methods to studies of name choice is discussed. The theoretical framework of the study is socio-onomastic, or more precisely socio-anthroponomastic, and the work explores boundaries of social intuition. It is argued that parents social intuition based on rules and norms for name choice in their communities that they may not even be consciously aware of guides them in choices related to namegiving. A survey instrument was used to collect data on naming choices and the data were analysed using both qualitative and quantitative methods. The study explored in detail five themes affecting reasons for name choice. These themes were: tradition and family, international names, aesthetic values and positive meanings, current names and special names. The process of naming is discussed in detail, as are the effects of the parents education and the child s sex on name choice. The Zagreb and Sofia data show significant differences and similarities in these themes and dimensions. The study shows that the differences between the Zagreb and the Sofia data sets are always larger than differences based on more expected demographic factors such as the children s sex or birth order or the parents educational level. These differences are supported by the literature on name choice showing Zagreb and Sofia are substantially different environments in which to name a child. With respect to the reasons for name choice in the data, respondents in both data sets indicated they were most concerned with choosing a name they thought was beautiful. After the beauty of the name, the most frequently mentioned reasons for name choice identified by Zagreb respondents were the meaning of the name, strategies related to national and international positioning, and traditionality of the name. The most frequently cited reasons in the Sofia data set were commemoration of relatives, the meaning of the name, whether the name was hereditary, and similarity of the name to other names in the family.
  • Könönen, Maija (Helsingin yliopisto, 2003)
    The present study discusses the theme of St. Petersburg-Leningrad in Joseph Brodsky's verse works. The chosen approach to the evolving im-age of the city in Brodsky's poetry is through four metaphors: St. Petersburg as "the common place" of the Petersburg Text, St. Petersburg as "Paradise and/or Hell", St. Petersburg as "a Utopian City" and St. Petersburg as "a Void". This examination of the city-image focusses on the aspects of space and time as basic categories underlying the poet's poetic world view. The method used is close reading, with an emphasis on semantical interpretation. The material consists of eighteen poems dating from 1958 to 1994. Apart from investigating the spatio-temporal features, the study focusses on exposing and analysing the allusions in the scrutinised works to other texts from Russian and Western belles lettres. Terminology (introduced by Bakhtin and Yury Lotman, among others) concerning the poetics of space in literature is employed in the present study. Conceptions originating from the paradigm of possible worlds are also used in elucidating the position of fictional and actual chronotopes and heroes in Brodsky's poetry. Brodsky's image of his native city is imbued with intertextual linkings. Through reminiscences of the "Divine Comedy" and Russian modernists, the city is paralleled with Dante's "lost and accursed" Florence, as well as with the lost St. Petersburg of Mandel'shtam and Akhmatova. His city-image is related to the Petersburg myth in Russian literature through their common themes of death and separation as well as through the merging of actual realia with the fictional worlds of the Petersburg Text. In his later poems, when his view of the city is that of an exiled poet, the city begins to lose its actual world referents, turning into a mental realm which is no longer connected to any particular geographical location or historical time. It is placed outside time. The native city as the homeland in its entirety is replaced by another existence created in language.
  • Tyrkkö, Jukka (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    Hypertexts are digital texts characterized by interactive hyperlinking and a fragmented textual organization. Increasingly prominent since the early 1990s, hypertexts have become a common text type both on the Internet and in a variety of other digital contexts. Although studied widely in disciplines like hypertext theory and media studies, formal linguistic approaches to hypertext continue to be relatively rare. This study examines coherence negotiation in hypertext with particularly reference to hypertext fiction. Coherence, or the quality of making sense, is a fundamental property of textness. Proceeding from the premise that coherence is a subjectively evaluated property rather than an objective quality arising directly from textual cues, the study focuses on the processes through which readers interact with hyperlinks and negotiate continuity between hypertextual fragments. The study begins with a typological discussion of textuality and an overview of the historical and technological precedents of modern hypertexts. Then, making use of text linguistic, discourse analytical, pragmatic, and narratological approaches to textual coherence, the study takes established models developed for analyzing and describing conventional texts, and examines their applicability to hypertext. Primary data derived from a collection of hyperfictions is used throughout to illustrate the mechanisms in practice. Hypertextual coherence negotiation is shown to require the ability to cognitively operate between local and global coherence by means of processing lexical cohesion, discourse topical continuities, inferences and implications, and shifting cognitive frames. The main conclusion of the study is that the style of reading required by hypertextuality fosters a new paradigm of coherence. Defined as fuzzy coherence, this new approach to textual sensemaking is predicated on an acceptance of the coherence challenges readers experience when the act of reading comes to involve repeated encounters with referentially imprecise hyperlinks and discourse topical shifts. A practical application of fuzzy coherence is shown to be in effect in the way coherence is actively manipulated in hypertext narratives.
  • Grahn, Malin (Teoreettinen filosofia, filosofia (ruots.), käytännöllinen filosofia, 2013)
    My doctoral dissertation explores gender and sexuality in Ancient Stoic philosophy. It investigates the different areas of Stoicism, cosmology, metaphysics, ethics, philosophical therapy, and social philosophy, from a novel viewpoint of gender. It is the first extensive systematic study of the topic in Stoicism. I also scrutinize questions that have been rather marginal in scholarship, such as beautification, embryology, and female exemplifications. I place the Stoic views into a wider philosophical and historical context, and discuss Stoicism against the backdrop of and in comparison to Plato s and Aristotle s philosophies, as well as the medical approach of the Hellenistic medical doctor Galen. This methodology is important for my argument in enabling me to make sense in a new way of the scattered remarks on gender and sexuality in early Stoic sources and to highlight the originality of the Stoic position in rejecting their predecessors views. My study divides into three parts: Body, Character, and Community. In part I, I argue that in Stoic metaphysics, men and women are to be understood as equally rational and equally capable of becoming sages and achieving happiness. In addition, I explore the status of gender in the Stoic category, a topic that has not been previously studied, and claim that to have gender should be understood in the Stoic category of koinos poion, common qualities, whereas to be of a specific gender is an individual quality, idios poion. The reproductive capacity is understood as a function of the rational soul. In part II, I argue that Musonius Rufus suggestion that girls and boys should both be educated equally follows naturally from Stoic premises even though other sources do not explicitly say so. I show that the Stoics discussed gendered characteristics both as inborn and culturally acquired and as ethically neutral. The Stoic philosophical therapy would also change certain cultural gendered features such as the traditional view of masculinity. In part III, I show that the Stoic cosmopolitanism provides further arguments in favor of gender equality even though the Stoics did not promote real-life political programs aiming at changing existing inequalities. Yet I stress their view of close human relations and family as the primary places where virtue is learned and practiced.
  • Raerinne, Jani (Helsingin yliopisto, 2011)
    The question at issue in this dissertation is the epistemic role played by ecological generalizations and models. I investigate and analyze such properties of generalizations as lawlikeness, invariance, and stability, and I ask which of these properties are relevant in the context of scientific explanations. I will claim that there are generalizable and reliable causal explanations in ecology by generalizations, which are invariant and stable. An invariant generalization continues to hold or be valid under a special change called an intervention that changes the value of its variables. Whether a generalization remains invariant during its interventions is the criterion that determines whether it is explanatory. A generalization can be invariant and explanatory regardless of its lawlike status. Stability deals with a generality that has to do with holding of a generalization in possible background conditions. The more stable a generalization, the less dependent it is on background conditions to remain true. Although it is invariance rather than stability of generalizations that furnishes us with explanatory generalizations, there is an important function that stability has in this context of explanations, namely, stability furnishes us with extrapolability and reliability of scientific explanations. I also discuss non-empirical investigations of models that I call robustness and sensitivity analyses. I call sensitivity analyses investigations in which one model is studied with regard to its stability conditions by making changes and variations to the values of the model s parameters. As a general definition of robustness analyses I propose investigations of variations in modeling assumptions of different models of the same phenomenon in which the focus is on whether they produce similar or convergent results or not. Robustness and sensitivity analyses are powerful tools for studying the conditions and assumptions where models break down and they are especially powerful in pointing out reasons as to why they do this. They show which conditions or assumptions the results of models depend on. Key words: ecology, generalizations, invariance, lawlikeness, philosophy of science, robustness, explanation, models, stability
  • Sandström, Caroline (Helsingin yliopisto, 2010)
    Gender in eastern Nyland – from dialect levelling to identity marking The study of dialect leveling in eastern Nyland focuses on variation and change in the Swedish dialects of Nyland (Fi. Uusimaa) on the south coast of Finland. During the last century the grammatical gender system of the dialects in the area has been reduced from a three-gender system to a two-gender system (cf. Corbett 1991). The present study is based on five linguistic variables in the gender system: the anaphoric pronouns (han, hon, den) when used for inanimates; the neuter pronouns he(t) and de(t) – when used anaphorically or as expletives; and three different types of morphological postposed definite articles. For all these variables, both dialect variants and standard variants are used in the dialects. Within the study of processes of variation and change, the work focuses on the mechanisms of leveling, simplification and reallocation; cf. Trudgill (1986) and Hinskens, Auer Kerswill (2005). With regard to the reductions of the gender system, the possibility that some of these variables might have turned into becoming dialect markers (Labov 1972) in the modern varieties of eastern Nyland is given special attention. The primary data consist of tape recordings with 25 informants done in the 1960s and 1970s. The informants were born in 1881–1913. In addition, recent changes were investigated in detail in tape recordings from 2005–2008 with 15 informants, who were born in the period 1927–1947 or 1976–1988. The study combines quantitative and qualitative methods in the systematic analysis of the data. Theoretically and methodologically the study relies on methods and results from variation studies and socio-dialectology, as well as on methods and results from traditional dialectology; cf. Ahlbäck (1946) and the dictionary of Swedish dialects, Ordbok över Finlands svenska folkmål, (1976–). The results show that there are different strategies among the informants in their use of the features studied. In the modern varieties of the dialects, most of the informants use only two genders, uter and neuter. Of the variables, the masculine pronoun for inanimates, the traditional neuter pronoun he(t) and some variants of the traditional definite articles have received a new function as dialect markers in my data. These changes first affect the gender distinctions, and the function of marking gender is lost; gradually the features then get new functions as dialect markers through processes of dialect leveling and reallocation. These processes are connected to changes taking place in the communities in eastern Nyland because of urbanization. When the dialect speakers experience that the traditional values of both the dialects and the culture are threatened, they begin to mark their dialectal identity by using dialect markers in their speech.
  • Lahtinen, Anja (Helsingin yliopisto, 2010)
    This study is about governance in contemporary China. The focus is on Qinghai Province, one of the twelve provincial-level units included in the western region development strategy launched in 2000 by the government of China. Qinghai, the subject of the case study, is not a very well-known province. Hence, this study is significant, because it provides new knowledge about the province of Qinghai, its governance and diverse challenges, and deepens one s overall knowledge regarding China. Qinghai province is one of the slowest developing regions of China. My research problem is to analyze to what extent provincial development correlates with the quality of governance. The central concept of this research is good governance. This dissertation employs a grounded theory approach while the theoretical framework of this study is built on the Three World s approach of analyzing the three main themes, namely, the environment, economic development, and cultural diversity, and to support the empirical work. Philosophical issues in the humanities and contemporary theories of governance are brought in to provide deeper understanding of governance, and to understand to what extent and how characteristics of good governance (derived from the Western canon) are combined with Chinese tradition. A qualitative research method is chosen to provide a deeper understanding of the contemporary challenges of Qinghai (and China) and to provide some insight into the role and impact of governance on provincial development. It also focuses on the Tibetan ethnic group in order to develop as full an understanding as possible about the province. The challenges faced by Qinghai concern in particular its environment, economic development, and cultural diversity, all of which are closely interrelated. The findings demonstrate that Qinghai Province is not a powerful actor, because it has weak communications with the central government and weak collaboration with its stakeholders and civil society. How Qinghai s provincial government conducts provincial development remains a key question in terms of shaping the province s future. The question is how is Qinghai s government best able to govern in a way that is beneficial for the people. This study demonstrates that this is a significant question that challenges governance everywhere, and particularly in China given the absence of democracy. This study provides the ingredients for reflection as to how provincial government can be motivated to choose to govern in a sustainable way, instead of leaning on growth factors with too little consideration about the impact on the environment and the people.
  • Hiltunen, Turo (Helsingin yliopisto, 2010)
    The present study provides a usage-based account of how three grammatical structures, declarative content clauses, interrogative content clause and as-predicative constructions, are used in academic research articles. These structures may be used in both knowledge claims and citations, and they often express evaluative meanings. Using the methodology of quantitative corpus linguistics, I investigate how the culture of the academic discipline influences the way in which these constructions are used in research articles. The study compares the rates of occurrence of these grammatical structures and investigates their co-occurrence patterns in articles representing four different disciplines (medicine, physics, law, and literary criticism). The analysis is based on a purpose-built 2-million-word corpus, which has been part-of-speech tagged. The analysis demonstrates that the use of these grammatical structures varies between disciplines, and further shows that the differences observed in the corpus data are linked with differences in the nature of knowledge and the patterns of enquiry. The constructions in focus tend to be more frequently used in the soft disciplines, law and literary criticism, where their co-occurrence patterns are also more varied. This reflects both the greater variety of topics discussed in these disciplines, and the higher frequency of references to statements made by other researchers. Knowledge-building in the soft fields normally requires a careful contextualisation of the arguments, giving rise to statements reporting earlier research employing the constructions in focus. In contrast, knowledgebuilding in the hard fields is typically a cumulative process, based on agreed-upon methods of analysis. This characteristic is reflected in the structure and contents of research reports, which offer fewer opportunities for using these constructions.