Researchers

Taru Leppänen

Principal Investigator talepp[at]utu.fi

Leppänen’s areas of expertise are feminist new materialisms, feminist musicology and the cultural study of music. She is a Lecturer in Gender Studies and an Adjunct Professor of Musicology at the Universities of Turku and Helsinki. Her latest monograph Vallatonta musiikkia. Lastenmusiikkikulttuuri 2000-luvun alun Suomessa [Powerless and unruly music: Children’s music cultures in Finland of the 2000s] (2010) concentrates on the formation of children’s gendered subjectivities vis-à-vis music in a Deleuzian framework. Her dissertation Musiikki, viulisti ja identiteetti. Sibelius-viulukilpailu suomalaisessa mediassa 1995 [Violinists, Music and Identity. The 1995 Sibelius Violin Competition in the Finnish Media] (The Finnish Society for Ethnomusicology, Helsinki, 2000) explored the construction of identities in terms of gender, nationality, ethnicity and race in Finnish ‘classical’ music culture and the media. She was the responsible leader of the research project ”The Construction of Gender in Children’s Cultures” (2008-2011) funded by the Academy of Finland.



Katve-Kaisa Kontturi

Senior Research Fellow katkon[at]utu.fi

Kontturi is a specialist in feminist art history, with an emphasis on the process nature and materialities of art-making. The feminist ethos of her work is to find new ways to study art in (participatory) ways that put art and theory in co-formative collaboration resulting in new materialist methods and concepts applicable to a wider field of art and cultural studies. She has published a monograph Feminismien ristiaallokossa: Keskusteluja taiteen ja teorian kytkennöistä [In the Cross-Swell of Feminisms: Conversations on the Connections of Art and Theory] (2006), nearly 20 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters in journals and edited volumes, and co-edited, e.g., two special issues on new materialism (2015; 2016). Her PhD dissertation won her the honorary title of the Doctor of the Year in Humanities (2012). Kontturi also curates exhibitions in relation to her research (e.g. Handmade Politics 2015). She is currently completing her monograph The Way of Following: Art, Materiality, Collaboration for the Immediations Series at Open Humanities Press. Kontturi co-convenes a feminist Matters of the Body research cluster at the University of Melbourne.



Milla Tiainen

Senior Research Fellow miltia[at]utu.fi

Tiainen’s areas of expertise span the voice in contemporary performing arts and media cultures; music, performance and sound studies, feminist new materialisms; ethnography; theories of affect; and posthumanist and environmental humanities. She has published the monographs Säveltäjän sijainnit [Locating the Composer] (The Research Centre for Contemporary Culture, University of Jyväskylä, 2005) and Becoming-Singer (University of Turku, 2012). She has (co-)edited various publications, for example the special issue on new materialisms in Cultural Studies Review 21:2 (2015), the collection of essays, Musical Encounters with Deleuze and Guattari (Bloomsbury 2017), and the special issue on new materialist study of art in Ruukku – Studies in Artistic Research 9 (2018).Her monograph on an ethnographic and process philosophical approach to operatic performance will be published by the University of Minnesota Press. Tiainen has authored 25 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters and almost 30 other scientific articles. Her PhD thesis (2012) won the dissertation prize of Turku University Foundation. In 2014–2018, she co-chaired (with Katve-Kaisa Kontturi and Marie-Luise Angerer) the European, COST-funded New Materialism network’s working group focused on the study of creative arts that had over 60 members from more than 15 countries. Tiainen is currently the Chair of the Finnish Musicological Society.



Tara Mehrabi

Senior Research Fellow — tara.mehrabi[at]liu.se

Mehrabi is an interdisciplinary researcher that is interested in feminist new materialisms, feminist technoscience studies, ethnography, feminist posthumanities, environmental humanities, medical humanities and queer death studies. She is currently doing a postdoc at the unit of Gender Studies, University of Turku on queer ecologies of death. She has several peer-reviewed book chapters exploring the human and transgenic fruit flies’ relation in science laboratories from a posthumanist ethics and feminist materialisms perspective. Her latest publication “Becoming intimate with flies” (forthcoming), in the journal Kvinder, Køn & Forskning explores the affective modes of doing science through an ethnographic lens. Her dissertation Making Death Matter (2016) explored the ethics and politics of knowledge production in science laboratories and death of non-humans as a constitutive part of science. Together with Nina Lykke and Marietta Radomska, Mehrabi is co-chair person of the Queer Death Studies research strand at GEXcel International Collegium. She is also a member of COST funded New Materialism network, and Posthumanities Hub at Royal Institute of Technology (KTH).



Anastasia Khodyreva

Research Fellow — anakho[at]utu.fi

Anastasia Khodyreva is a doctoral candidate based in the Department of Gender Studies, University of Turku, Finland. The sphere of her research interests includes feminist new materialisms and corresponding methodological openings, studies of visual culture and, in particular, cinema studies, new materialist studies of sounds, feminist blue humanities. She currently practices autoethnography/autophenomenography.  In her Ph.D. project, she researches efflorescent cinematic and off-screen bodies in their often overlooked or unattended everydayness, “following” emergent bodily registers while practicing affects as methods of her research.  The project she is developing grasps cinema, its material body and researcher’s own encounters by the means of new materialisms, affect theory and feminist theories of embodiments in order to explore how embodiments enact their intersectional entanglements with other bodies and powers and what affects actually do.

Another ongoing project she co-runs with Dr. Elina Suoyrjö bears the title of Following the Sonorous Bodies and deals with the sonic materialities. The results of the project will unfold in the special issue of The Unlikely Journal for Creative Arts where the authors are invited to engage with and practice the processual methodology of following (Kontturi 2018; Hongisto, Kontturi and Tiainen 2015) to think with and through ways to listen differently, to different sonorous bodies. These bodies—from the human to more-than-human, posthuman, and non-human—invite different ways of listening to difference, in their voices, noises, murmurings, echoes, and silences.