Iida Turpeinen

© Susanna Kekkonen

Iida Turpeinen (1987) is a Finnish literary scholar who is interested in the connections between natural sciences and literature. She published her debut novel Beasts of the Sea (Elolliset) last year. The book won her the literary award of the Helsingin Sanomat daily and was nominated for the most prestigious literary award in Finland, the Finlandia Prize. In early May, Estonian Tänapäev publishers will publish the novel in Estonian. Turpeinen has explored the relations of humans and nature and completed a thesis on the subject. A great source of inspiration and the central symbol of Beasts of the Sea is Steller’s sea cow (Hydrodamalis gigas), a mammal of the Sirenia order. The first European to see it was the young naturalist Georg Wilhelm Steller who was part of the expedition of Vitus Bering. In less than thirty years, this species became extinct due to hunting. The extinction of species is an important topic in Turpeinen’s book, the fate of Steller’s sea cow allowed her to explore the development of science – including the branch of biology that deals with extinction – through fiction. Iida Turpeinen will talk to translator Piret Pääsuke.

Performs at

Date Event Name Location
Sunday, 2 June at 16:00 Iida Turpeinen and Piret Pääsuke Estonian Writers’ Union

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