Johanna Isosävi

Title of Docent of French language, PhD

  • PL 24 (Unioninkatu 40)




Research activity per year

Personal profile

Description of research and teaching

I am Associate Professor (tenure track) of French at the University of Helsinki.

My research areas are politeness, address forms and inclusive language use. My studies are often contrastive (French/Finnish). In my ongoing international project (2020–24), we study interruptions in Finnish, French and German parliamentary debates (collaboration with ENS Lyon and Cambridge, UK). In my research project funded by Kone Foundation, I examined Finnish and French politeness (2017–19). The results of my project are gathered in my scientific book Miten tutkia kohteliaisuutta? Käsityksiä suomalaisesta ja ranskalaisesta kohteliaisuudesta [How to study politeness? Perceptions of Finnish and French politeness] (2023, SKS). In my doctoral thesis, I studied address forms in French films and their translations in Finnish subtitles (2010). I have edited wit Hanna Lappalainen kanssa the book Saako sinutella vai täytyykö teititellä? Tutkimuksia eurooppalaisten kielten puhuttelukäytännöistä [Addressing people with T or V? Studies of European address practicies] (2015, SKS). My research articles have been published in respected international journals (e.g. Journal of PragmaticsJournal of Politeness Research, Pragmatics and SocietyJournal of Historical Pragmatics and Contrastive Pragmatics

I have written with Camilla Lindholm a guide to social writing (Yhteisöllisen kirjoittamisen opas, 2023, Art House) and a guide to the academic career after the PhD (Väitöksen jälkeen: opas akateemiselle uralle, 2021, Art House). My areas of interest are academic writing and especially social writing. We have given with Lindholm keynotes and workshops for doctoral students on academic career and writing in different universities.

I have served many years as a University Lecturer in universities of Helsinki and Turku. I have taught about 30 different courses of university level. Currently, I teach for instance French grammar and scientific writing. I direct masters' thesis and serve as their second examiner. I completed 60 credits of Teachers' pedagogical studies oriented towards adult education and 40 credits of Advanced studies in education (especially in subject didactics of foreign languages) at the University of Helsinki. 

I am an active science communicator. I have given interviews about my research in television, radio and journals. I write a blog (in Finnish), I release my own podcast Ranskaa raakana! and communicate in social media, such as X (@johannaisosavi). I have also released with Camilla Lindholm the podcast Väitöksen jälkeen with 12 episodes.

Description of research and teaching





Education/Academic qualification

Title of Docent of French Language, University of Helsinki

Award Date: 7 Jan 2020

French philology, PhD

Award Date: 9 Mar 2010

Fields of Science

  • 6121 Languages

International and National Collaboration

Publications and projects within past five years.