Henkilökohtainen profiili

Tutkimuksen ja opetuksen kuvaus


Pirjo Lyytikäinen is a specialist of Finnish fin de siècle symbolism, decadence and early modernism. Lyytikäinen’s works on Finnish symbolism and decadence, in particular her monograph Narkissos ja sfinksi (‘Narcissus and the sphinx’ 1997), are widely recognized in the field. In English, the articles “Decadent Tropologies of Sickness,” in Decadence, Degeneration, and the End (2014) and the article “Female Monsters, Visionary Protagonists: Epiphanies in Nordic Decadence” in States of Decadence (2016) represent the most recent contributions to this field.

Her interests in Finnish literature also cover areas of modernism (a monograph and articles on Volter Kilpi, a modernist of the 1930’s), romantic writing (a monograph on the nineteenth-century author Aleksis Kivi) and contemporary allegorical writing (a monograph and articles on Leena Krohn).

Her theoretical work has focused on literary genres and modes (a, monograph and an edited volume Lajit yli rajojen & articles in Finnish and the edited volume Genre and Interpretation (2010) & articles in English), and questions of mimesis (Rethinking Mimesis (2012) in English).

Lyytikäinen’s most important recent research area is literature and emotions: as a project-leader of the area she has already published articles on the topic in Finnish and the  article “How to Study Emotion Effects in Literature” 2016 in English. Her focus on this field is on the poetics of moods, including the study of fin de siècle moods. 



Lyytikäinen has taught a great number of courses at all levels for thirty years. In recent years her teaching comprises yearly seminars in the master’s programme of Finnish literature and in the doctoral programmes, including national doctoral programmes and international doctoral training (mainly the PhDnet Literary and Cultural Studies).


Her lecture series include courses on Symbolism and Decadence, Literature and Nature Fantasy, Leena Krohn’s allegorical fantasy, Genres in Literature, Mimesis, and Emotions in Literature.




  • 6122 Kirjallisuuden tutkimus