Dr Tuomas M. S. Lehtonen
Phone: +358 (0)40 560 9879
- relationships between oral and literary culture
- Medieval history and and literature in Latin
- historiography of the Middle Ages and in the early modern age
- rhetoric and poetics
As Secretary General, Tuomas Lehtonen is responsible for the management and operating environment of the Finnish Literature Society. He is in charge of the research activities of the society as well.
Lehtonen is currently researching the relationships between the oral and literary and the vernacular and Latin-language cultures in the Middle Ages and the early modern age in Finland. He is the principal investigator of the project “Letters and Songs: Registers of Belief and Expression in the Early Modern North hosted by the Finnish Literature Society” (Academy of Finland funding 288119, 1.9.2015-31.8.2020). He is also a member of the managing committee of the COST Action ”New Communities of Interpretation: Contexts, Strategies and Processes of Religious Transformation in Late Medieval and Early Modern Europe” funded by the European Commission and the European Science Foundation.
Lehtonen’s academic background is medieval research, and he is an adjunct professor in European history at the University of Helsinki. Previously he studied Latin secular poetry and satires from the 12th and 13th centuries. He has subsequently carried out research on chance, Fortune and concepts of providence in historiography from the 11th to 13th century and the relationships of oral and literary cultures. Lehtonen has written about medieval cultural history in Finland and studied theoretical debate on rhetoric, poetics, the theory of language and semiotics. Lehtonen holds a docentship in European history at the University of Helsinki.
Among his most recent publications are collected volumes The Performance of Christian and Pagan Storyworlds. Non-Canonical Chapters of the History of Nordic Medieval Literature. Medieval Identities in Socio-Cultural Spaces (Turnhout: Brepols 2013, 448 p.) edited together with Lars Boje Mortensen and Alexandra Bergholm, Re-forming Texts, Music and Church Art in the Early Modern North (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press 2016, 482 p.) edited together with Linda Kaljund, and a co-authored monograph Laulut ja kirjoitukset: suullinen ja kirjallinen kulttuuri uuden ajan alun Suomessa (Helsinki: SKS 2017, 624 p.): English summary.
Lehtonen has been awarded with the Finnish state award for Public Information (Valtion tiedonkjulkistamispalkinto) twice (1998, 2006) and with the Luminous Middle Ages (Valoisa keskiaika) award for promoting medieval studies in Finland 2006.
University of Jyväskylä awarded him with honorary doctorate in 2016.