Dr. Sirpa Salenius is a lecturer and scholar, whose interests range from nineteenth-century American writers and artists to women’s studies and African-American literature. She has lived in Florence, Italy since 1993.

New Publications

transatlantic-conversations Transatlantic Conversations
Nineteenth-Century American Women’s Encounters with Italy and the Atlantic World

“This outstanding collection of sophisticated, engaging studies focuses on courageous and bold women who traveled and reported—through letters, articles, essays, fiction, and poems—on their complex social, artistic, and literary engagements with Italy, France, Great Britain, and the Caribbean.”
— Susan Belasco, emerita professor and chair, Center for Digital Research in the Humanities, University of Nebraska–Lincoln
See: University of New Hampshire Press

abolitionist-abroad An Abolitionist Abroad
Sarah Parker Remond in Cosmopolitan Europe

“Salenius effectively draws on archival research of Remond and her contemporaries to showcase Remond’s activism and demonstrate that African Americans were critically and intimately engaged in transatlantic political and social activities.”
— DoVeanna Fulton, author of Speaking Power: Black Feminist Orality in Women’s Narratives of Slavery
See: University of Massachusetts Press

Sirpa Salenius
is the author of:
Rose Elizabeth Cleveland: First Lady and Literary Scholar (2014)
Florence, Italy: Images of the City in Nineteenth-Century American Writing (2007)
Set in Stone: 19th-century American Authors in Florence (2003)

and the editor of
American Authors Reinventing Italy: The Writings of Exceptional Nineteenth-Century Women (2009)
Sculptors, Painters, and Italy: Italian Influence on Nineteenth-Century American Art (2009)

Dr. Salenius is a Senior Lecturer in English-language literature and culture at the University of Eastern Finland (Joensuu, Finland). She has taught British and American Literature and Academic Writing at the University of Tokyo (Japan) and at American university programs in Rome and Florence (Italy). She has worked as Resident Director at AIFS / Richmond University summer school programs in Rome and Florence (Italy). Her publications focus on Transatlantic Studies, on examining the presence of American artists and writers in Italy, and on exploring gender, sexuality, and race in the transatlantic context. Her research discusses such American authors and artists as Mark Twain, Constance Fenimore Woolson, Henry James, Edith Wharton, Ernest Hemingway, Frederick Douglass, James Baldwin, Edmonia Lewis, and Harriet Hosmer.

She received her Master’s degree from the University of Florence (Università degli Studi di Firenze) and her Ph.D. from the University of Joensuu (now University of Eastern Finland).

She is a recipient of several fellowships and grants that have enabled her to do research in various archives and research libraries in the United States and Europe, including Harvard’s Houghton Library (Cambridge), New York Public Library (New York), Pierpont Morgan Library(New York), Armstrong-Browning Library (Waco, Texas), John F. Kennedy Institute Library (Berlin, Germany), and Roosevelt Study Center (Middelburg, Netherlands).

Contact: sirpa.salenius@gmail.com