Photo of Mikko Viitamäki

Mikko Viitamäki

  • PL 59 (Unioninkatu 38)



  • PL 59 (Unioninkatu 38), B210




Research output per year

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Personal profile

Description of research and teaching

Research interests

- Urdu poetry

- Persian literature in India

- Sufi practice and ritual in South Asia

- Islamic reform in South Asia

- Mystical philosophy in South Asian Sufism


Teaching (University of Helsinki 2007-)

- Hindi on all levels from introductory to advanced

- Urdu on all levels from introductory to advanced

- Sanskrit texts

- Introduction to Islam

- Islam in South Asia

- Indian literatures

- Religious radicalism

Curriculum vitae

Mikko Viitamäki works as University Lecturer in South Asian Studies at the University of Helsinki. He received the PhD degree at the University of Helsinki in 2015 majoring in Arabic and Islamic studies. In his dissertation, he studied the relationship of a poetic text and musical performance in the context of Sufi religious practice in Delhi and Hyderabad.

At present, Dr. Viitamäki teaches South Asian languages (Hindi, Urdu, Sanskrit) as well as courses on South Asian literatures and cultures. His teaching and research interests cover topics such as politics of language in India and Pakistan, aesthetics, history and performance contexts of Persian and Urdu poetry, Islamic reform and contemporary Islamic debates in South Asia. He is also working on a translation of an anthology of Urdu poetry into Finnish.

Education/Academic qualification

Arabic and Islamic Studies, PhD, Department of World Cultures 2010-2017

Fields of Science

  • 6121 Languages
  • South Asian Philology
  • Urdu
  • Hindi
  • Persian
  • 6122 Literature studies
  • South Asian Studies
  • Urdu literature
  • South Asian Philogy
  • Indo-Persian studies


Retelling Medieval History for Twentieth-century Readers: Encounter of a Hindu Prince and a Sufi Master in Khwaja Hasan Nizami's Nizami Bansuri

Viitamäki, M., 2017, Literary and Religious Practices in Medieval and Early Modern India. Aquil, R. & Curley, D. L. (eds.). Abingdon ; New York, NY: Manohar Publishers & Distributors, p. 191-212 22 p. 7

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review

Perfumed Islam: The Culture of Scent at the Nizamuddin Basti

Viitamäki, M., 2016, Roots of Wisdom, Branches of Devotion: Plant Life in South Asian Traditions. Ferrari, F. M. & Dähnhardt, T. (eds.). Sheffield: Equinox Publishing, p. 79-97 19 p. 4

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review

The Delicate Balance: Adab and Mystical States in the Musical Assemblies of Sufis in Medieval India

Viitamäki, M., 2016, Ethics and Spirituality in Islam: Sufi adab. Chiabotti, F., Feuillebois-Pierunek, E., Mayeur-Jaouen, C. & Patrizi, L. (eds.). Leiden: Brill , p. 584-607 24 p. (Islamic Literatures: Texts and Studies).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review

Poetry in Sufi Practice: Patrons, poets and performers in South Asian Sufism from thirteenth century to the present

Viitamäki, M., 16 Mar 2015, Helsinki. 398 p.

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisMonograph

Open Access

Pyhä maantiede ja muistin hallinta: Kulttuuriperinnön tuhoaminen osana modernia jihadia

Viitamäki, M., 2015, In : Niin & näin : filosofinen aikakauslehti. 87, 4, p. 63-66 4 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleGeneral public



Literary creativity in Urdu and the popular appeal of qawwali

Mikko Viitamäki (Speaker)
8 Sep 2017

Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation

Urdu translation of the Shahname: Adopting a Persian epic into Urdu literature

Mikko Viitamäki (Speaker)
5 Jul 2017

Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation

Printing Press and the Popularization of Sufism through New Literary Genres

Mikko Viitamäki (Invited speaker)
11 May 2017

Activity: Talk or presentation typesInvited talk

Study Day, "Languages in Co-ownership"

Riikka Tuori (Speaker: Presenter), Mikko Viitamäki (Speaker: Presenter)
11 Mar 2020

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesOrganisation and participation in conferences, workshops, courses, seminars

Monika Freier

Mikko Viitamäki (Host)
3 Sep 201913 Sep 2019

Activity: Hosting a visitor typesAcademic visit at UH