XXII Finnish Symposium on Late Antiquity
Tvärminne, Finland, 8-9 November, 2013
“Spaces – Past and Present”
The XXII Finnish Symposium on Late Antiquity ( will be organized on November, 8-9, 2013. The aim of the symposium is to bring together students and scholars with an interest in Late Antiquity from a variety of universities and disciplines. This year, we explore broadly spaces in Late Antiquity but suggestions for papers dealing with other topics will also be considered. Our main aim is to stimulate interdisciplinary dialogue between philology, archaeology, history, theology, religious studies, art history and other disciplines that deal with Late Antiquity.
The symposium will be organized in the premises of a zoological research station operated by the University of Helsinki at a beautiful location at Tvärminne on the southern coast of Finland ( It is organized by Classics (Department of World Cultures, University of Helsinki) together with an interdisciplinary organizing committee (see below).
The theme of the symposium this year is “Spaces – Past and Present”. This theme includes the analysis of spaces in late antiquity such experience of space; re-use and interpretation of spatial experience; conceptualization of space; imperial presence and border-areas; movement and migration; as well as religious and liturgical place.
This year’s symposium features some specially invited speakers, among whom are

  • Juliette Day (Church History, University of Helsinki). Dr Day is university lecturer in Church history and the specialist on the Late Antiquity and early Christianity, especially early Christian liturgy. She has published e.g., The Baptismal Liturgy of Jerusalem: 4th and 5th Century Evidence in Jerusalem, Egypt and Syria (2007) and Proclus on Initiation in Constantinople (2005).
  • Zbigniew Fiema (Humboldt Universität, Berlin). Dr Fiema is specialist in late antique archaeology and the late antique Near Eastern region. He is currently visiting professor in the Winckelmann Institut at the Humboldt Universität, Berlin. He has led the excavations of Jabal Harun as the research director in the Academy of Finland Centre of Excellence “Ancient and Greek Documents, Archives and Libraries” and has e.g., coedited Petra – the mountain of Aaron: The Finnish archaeological project in Jordan. The church and the chapel (with Jaakko Frösen, 2008)
  • Claudia Rapp (Institut für Byzantinistik und Neogräzistik, Universität Wien). Prof. Rapp is the specialist on cultural and social history of Late Antiquity and early Byzantine period. She has published, e.g., Holy Bishops in Late Antiquity: The Nature of Christian Leadership in a Time of Transition (2005) and coedited the volumes Bosphorus. Essays in Honour of Cyril Mango (1995), Elites in Late Antiquity (2000) and Violence in Late Antiquity. Perceptions and Practices (2006).
  • Jürgen Zangenberg (Religious Studies / Archaeology, University of Leiden). Since 2006 prof. Zangenberg is chair New Testament and Early Christian Literature at the Faculty of Humanities and professor at the Faculty of Archaeology. He is especially interested in the cultural context of the New Testament and Early Christian Literature. Apart from textual studies, he specialises in the archaeology of Qumran, ancient Judaism, particularly in Galilee and Samaria. He has lastly co-edited Religion, Ethnicity and Identity in Ancient Galilee. A Region in Transition (with Harold Attridge & Dale B. Martin, 2006). He is co-director of the Kinneret Regional Project archaeological excavations at Horvat Kur, Galilee.

There is space for a maximum of eight more papers. If you wish to deliver a paper, please send a short abstract (of less than 300 words) by May 31, 2013 to Dr. Ville Vuolanto (ville.vuolanto(at) Applicants will be informed by June 19, 2013 whether they have been accepted. We have reserved 30 minutes for each presentation, including discussion following the paper. Therefore, we recommend limiting the papers to 20 minutes.
The seminar is free. We will offer transportation from Helsinki to Tvärminne and back, as well as accommodation, meals, coffee and sauna at Tvärminne. However, we are not able to cover the costs for travelling to Helsinki first, or accommodation there. Registration for the conference will start September 20, 2013.
The Finnish Symposium on Late Antiquity is organized annually since 1992. It started as a Finnish-language seminar for postgraduate students. However, over the years, more and more papers were presented by established scholars. Moreover, in many years, a few well-known scholars were invited from abroad, and the language of the symposium was changed to English, thus making it more and more international. This year, for the second time, we do not only have a few specially invited guests from abroad, but we invite suggestions for papers from anyone who is interested. In keeping with the symposium’s traditions, we encourage not only senior, but also junior scholars and postgraduate students to participate.
The organizing committee:
– Maijastina Kahlos, PhD, Classics / Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies, University of Helsinki maijastina.kahlos(at)
– Ulla Tervahauta ThD, Biblical Studies, University of Helsinki ulla.tervahauta(at)
– Ville Vuolanto, PhD, History, University of Tampere / University of Oslo ville.vuolanto(at)
And, now after 21 years, we have a web page 🙂

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