Dr Pirkko Koppinen

Research project: Itineraries and Museum Objects: A Study of a Tanner's Logbook


My study is grounded in museology, anthropology, heritage and material culture studies. The aim of my thesis is to investigate what happens during the journey of an everyday object, the tanner's logbook, from the personal context, the contributing (or source) community (my family), to the public context of a museum exhibition in Finland when I, as the researcher, am both part of the source community and a guest curator in the museum. Therefore, my methodology focuses on the researcher's role in that journey, the materiality of an object, and the relationship between source communities and museums as well as that of curators and public sphere. I apply the analogy interlacing, familiar from the Book of Kells, to the concept of object itinerary in a new case study in Finland. As such, my study contributes a specific experiment in museology and heritage studies.


I have previously lectured on medieval literature for several years in the Department of English at Royal Holloway, University of London, on both undergraduate and postgraduate levels before embarking on my current research journey into the itineraries of museum objects from the personal context to the public context of a museum.

I have presented my research in both international and national conferences and my publications include:

‘Breaking the Mould: Solving the Old English Riddle 12 as Wudu ‘Wood'', Bintley, M. and Shapland, M., eds, Trees and Timber in the Anglo-Saxon World, Oxford University Press, 2013, 158-174.

‘Materiality of Fire in Exeter Book Riddles 30 a and b (K-D): An Unexpected Solution, in Neville, J. and Cavell, M. eds, Riddles at Work in the Anglo-Saxon Tradition: Words, Ideas, Interactions, Manchester University Press.

Forthcoming: Translations of the Old English Beowulf and Judith in Honkapohja, A. et al. eds, Anglosaksien Aarteita.

Areas of research interest

  • Heritage
  • Museology
  • Material culture
  • Object itineraries
  • Anthropology
  • Anglo-Saxon literary and visual culture


  • MA Heritage (Contemporary Practice), Kingston University London, 2013
  • PhD in English, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2009
  • PGCE, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2006
  • MA in Medieval Studies, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2003
  • BA (Hons.) English, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2001

Funding or awards received

  • College Team Teaching Prize, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2015
  • College Teaching Award in Postgraduate Category, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2007
  • Thomas Holloway PhD Studentship, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2003-2007
  • Phyllis Hodgson Memorial Prize for merit in Medieval Literature for the MA dissertation, Royal Holloway, University of London, 2004
  • Lynne Grundy Memorial Award, 2003


Jump to: Thesis
Number of items: 1.


Koppinen, Pirkko Anneli (2020) Itineraries and museum objects : a study of a tanner’s logbook. (PhD thesis), Kingston University, .

This list was generated on Tue May 21 05:16:21 2024 BST.

Conference papers

Forthcoming: The Memory of Place and Place of Memory, London Centre for Interdisciplinary Research, St Anne's College, University of Oxford, 22-23 June 2019, 'Memory as Part of Object Itinerary of a Tanner's Logbook'

Forthcoming, University of Leeds, International Medieval Congress, 1 July 2019, 'The Concept of Object Itinerary, Hrothgar's Hilt in Beowulf, and the Interlace Structure in the Book of Kells'  

CHAT 2017, University of Amsterdam, 3 November 2017, 'From Trash to National Treasure: A Tannery's Logbook and 100 Years of Finnish Independence'

University of Leeds, International Medieval Congress (IMC), 9 July 2015, ‘Encounters of the Third Kind: Materiality and Some Exeter Book Riddles'

University of Leeds, IMC, 8 July 2014, ‘Fah ond fyrheard ferhwealde heold: Materiality and Old English Poetry'

University of Leeds, IMC, 9 July 2012, ‘Ne forða musfellan ne: Gerefa and the Order of Things'