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RES014 Exploring Politics of Gender and Sexuality across the Finnish-Russian Border I: Art/Research Workshop 5 ECTS
Period I Period II Period III Period IV
Language of instruction
Type or level of studies
Advanced studies
Course unit descriptions in the curriculum
MDP in Russian and European Studies
International Relations
School of Management

Learning outcomes

After the course, students are able to
- recognize meanings associated with politics of gender and sexuality in Finland and in Russia
- discuss issues related to politics of gender and sexuality in cross-cultural groups
- reflect on the limits of established and conventionalized ways of knowledge production within academia
- understand the role of art as a form of societal knowledge production
- gain practical and creative knowledge of artistic production (especially shooting and editing videos or making collages) as a research method
- critically reflect on own knowledge-production through artistic/research projects

General description

This course is offered as an investigative art/research workshop where students explore questions related to sexual and gender politics in Finnish and Russian societies. The course consists of pre-readings, short lectures, group discussions and joint practical art-making workshops. The students learn to make short videos and to edit them. The students do not have to have previous experience of making videos or practicing art.

The workshop is intended to function as a space of cross-cultural and cross-sectoral knowledge production. We will critically explore a variety of borders that relate to the politics of gender and sexuality, e.g. the East-West divide or the boundary between academic research and artistic practice. We seek to explore the limits of established and conventionalized ways of knowledge production within academia, to recognize forms of sexual nationalism as well as to identify new kinds of solutions to problems related to the politics of gender & sexuality both in Finland and in Russia. 

The point of departure of the workshop is the idea that while questions related to sexual and gender politics are differently structured in Finnish and Russian societies, much is also shared. The workshop will explore the following types of questions: 

(1)   What kinds of meanings do gender and sexuality acquire in different cultural-political contexts? How are these meanings contested and questioned in Finland and in Russia?

(2)   How do politics of gender and sexuality articulate conceptions of social justice and equality in Finnish and Russian societies? What kind of practices of power, marginalization and exclusion are associated with these conceptions, and how can they be countered?

(3)   What kinds of cultural translations does the joint exploration of sexuality and gender bring to the fore? How can these acts of translation inform us about the cultural articulations concerning politics of gender and sexuality in Finland and Russia?

(4)   What kind of cultural and social ‘infrastructure’ is there in the past and present of the Russian and Finnish societies that would enable identifying solutions to the social issues related to politics of gender and sexuality?

Work load

Total hours 135 hrs (contact teaching 35 hrs, independent work 100 hrs) 

  • Before the workshop: a set of pre-readings and a reflective learning diary (app. 2000 words) 
  • Active attendance at the workshop sessions and practical art-making 
  • After the workshop: a finalized artwork and/or an essay (app. 3000 words)

Enrolment for University Studies

Enrolment time has expired


Anni Kangas, Teacher responsible
Saara Särmä, Teacher responsible
Daria Krivonos, Teacher responsible
Masha Godovannaya, Teacher
Inna Perheentupa, Teacher


17-Oct-2016 – 26-Oct-2016
Lectures 35 hours
Mon 17-Oct-2016 at 15-19, Virta 113
Tue 18-Oct-2016 at 15-19, Virta 113
Wed 19-Oct-2016 at 15-19, Virta 113
Thu 20-Oct-2016 at 15-19, Virta 113
Fri 21-Oct-2016 at 15-19, Linna K113
Mon 24-Oct-2016 at 15-19, Pinni A3107
Tue 25-Oct-2016 at 16-20, Virta Computer Room 53
Wed 26-Oct-2016 at 15-19, Virta 113
Independent work 100 hours

Study materials


Before the workshop, students are expected to read eight articles / chapters and to write a reflective learning diary (app. 2000 words) on the basis of the readings. The readings will be made available in the Moodle site of the course. The learning diary should be sent to course coordinators by 10 October 2016.