Mariana Tulf

The Anderson Lecture

The Department of Estonian and Comparative Folklore are pleased to announce that the Anderson Lecture for 2022, If the One I know Came – The Poem, Laws of Folklore and Imagination, will be delivered by Professor Lotte Tarkka of the University of Helsinki.

 If the One I know Came – The Poem, Laws of Folklore and Imagination

Published in German by Goethe as the Finnisches Lied, and translated early into tens of languages, the Ingrian, Karelian and Finnish runosong If the One I Know Came, belongs to the heritagized canon of folk poetry. Its identity, life in oral tradition and literary renditions, as well as its treatment by folklore editors and researchers, offers an intriguing example of the methodological choices and the theoretical, implicit and explicit presuppositions in art and research. What, if any, are the laws governing its variation and stability within and across the oral-literary interface, and how do these laws relate to the meanings conveyed in the versions? Who, if anyone, created the poem, and how can we understand its elusive textuality?

The lecture takes us through the history of the song in oral tradition and literary editions, its return to the oral field, and finally its use as an example of the imaginative power, memory lapses, and endless, kaleidoscopic or mechanical reiteration in vernacular poiesis. By doing so, it illustrates the ways in which expressive traditions and individual or collective human creativity as well as authorship have been conceptualized in the history of folklore studies in and since the times of Walter Anderson.

The lecture will take place on September 22at 16.15, Ülikooli 16- 212, Tartu. 

Join in Zoom Meeting:

(Meeting ID: 949 2202 4515 ; Passcode: 167846)


More information: Liilia Laaneman-Nekoliak: + 372 737 5304, liilia.laaneman(ät)

Walter Anderson (1885-1962) was the founding professor of the Department. In 2019, its centenary year, the Department resolved to honour the memory of this distinguished scholar of folk narrative by instituting an Annual Lecture to be held each autumn. The lecture is followed by a reception.

You can find more information about Walter Anderson in Wikipedia.


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About Department of Literature and Theatre studies

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The Department of Literature and Theater Studies research focuses on studying literature as an intercultural process and its relationship with different art forms.
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Studies In the Department of Literature and Theater Research

In the Department of Literature and Theater Research, it is possible to study in three different fields: Estonian literature, world literature and theater studies.