Intertwined histories – colonial aspects of Finnish-Namibian relations?



How should we perceive the history of Finnish missionary work in Namibia during the 19th and 20th centuries? Should we understand it as intercultural exchange or does it also include colonial aspects? What is the historical legacy of Finnish-Namibian relations?


The working group on colonialism within Historians without Borders welcomes you to discuss this important topic together with scholars from Finland and Namibia on Tuesday 8th of November 2022 in Helsinki.


During the talk, we will learn about the ongoing work of The University of Turku History of Colonialism Research Group which explores the history of colonialism in different temporal and geographical contexts, especially the history of colonialism in the context of 19th and 20th century Finland. 


We will also hear from two visiting scholars from Namibia, Dr. Meameno Shiweda and Loini Iizyenda


The event is moderated by Teivo Teivainen, Professor of world politics at the University of Helsinki.

The discussion is held on November 8th at 4.30-6 pm in Rosebud Sivullinen -bookshop in Helsinki (address: Kaisaniemenkatu 5, street level). The event is open for everyone and no enrollment beforehand is needed. The discussion is held in English.


The event will also be streamed on Rosebud’s Youtube-channel.





4.30 pm Opening words

Erkki Tuomioja, Chairman of the Board of Historians without Borders



Finnish-Namibian historical relations in a new light

Professor Leila Koivunen (University of Turku)


During the past years, collaboration between historians in Finland and Namibia has intensified and brought scholars together to develop new approaches and methods to analyse historical connections between the two countries. Koivunen and Merivirta tell about this collaboration and its results so far.


Leila Koivunen is a professor of global history and intercultural interaction at the Department of European and Word History, University of Turku.



Embracing the Aawambo pre colonial attire: the impact of the Finnish missionaries on its transformation with emphasis on uuputu artefacts

Loini Iizyenda (University of Namibia)


Loini Iizyenda is a doctoral student and a Fashion and Textile Studies lecturer at the University of Namibia.



Pioneers of teacher training education in northern Namibia: Where it all began

Dr. Meameno Shiweda (University of Namibia)


Dr. Shiweda is a lecturer at the Department of Intermediate and Vocational Education in the School of Education, at Hifikepunye Pohamba Campus of the University of Namibia.



5.30 pm Open discussion


6.00 pm Event ends