The Waves of Time Revisited: Glimpses of life


  • Matti Itkonen University of Jyväskylä, Finland



essayism; Aino and Alvar Aalto; spirit of the place; functionalism


This study could perhaps be characterized as the art of walking in time, verbally, pictorially and abstractly, i.e. using words, images and thoughts. Of course, the ideal of essayism also includes a scientific dimension. Equally the aim is to make multi-level use of the idea of dialogue. At the same time, the writer is also carrying on a monologue (with himself), an aspect that is called dialogic monologue. After all, the respondent, too, is himself the questioner. Architecture and the essay are reminiscent of each other. The created building and the created word are close relatives. An essayistic study signifies a hermetic state of language. A text’s inner verbal room is constructed from a circle of ideas. Roundness means enclosure: then there is an end at the beginning and a beginning at the end. Yet space is not circumscribed and confined. The actual beginning and end are always located outside the respective verbal room. The spiral of deduction forms a linguistic wisp and whirl that begins and ends as a chronological sequence. The past points forward to the future, and the future looks back to the bygone. The deepening of ideas means passing through several verbal rooms and, during that journey, conclusions will be refined. The Waves of Time, just as the Aaltos of their time, are surges of masterfulness. Glimpses of life mean flashes of Finnishness. They are collective snapshots: excerpts from a shared national story.




How to Cite

Itkonen, M. (2022). The Waves of Time Revisited: Glimpses of life. European Journal of Language and Literature, 8(1), 43–55.