TUE—January 7—1 PM ET

*This program will take place as a virtual event*


MoreLectures + Literary

On January 7, Mia Kankimäki joins us for a book talk of her The Women I Think About at Night: Traveling the Paths of My Heroes, out now in translation by Douglas Robinson! With moderator Heli Serviö, Mia Kankimäki will discuss her new novel blending travelogue, memoir, and biography as she recounts her travels around the world to retrace the steps of ten remarkable female pioneers from history.

Bored with her life and feeling stuck in her mid-40s, Mia Kankimäki decided to leave her job, sell her apartment, and travel the world to follow the paths of  female explorers and artists from history who inspired her. From Tanzania and Kenya, she sought out the location where Karen Blixen of Out of Africa lived in the 1920s;  in Japan, Mia attempted to cure her depression while researching famed contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama, who has voluntarily lived in a psychiatric hospital for decades. In Italy, Mia searched for the works of forgotten Renaissance women painters of the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, finally finding  her heroines in the portraits of Sofonisba Anguissola, Lavinia Fontana, and Artemisia Gentileschi. If these women could make it in the world hundreds of years ago, why can’t Mia?

The Women I Think About at Night is part travelogue and part thrilling exploration of the lost women adventurers of history who defied expectations in order to see—and change—the world.

The event will take place as a Zoom webinar; please ask questions in the chat or send them in advance to  info@amscan.org. Registration is required; please sign up at the link above. The book was released on November 10 from Simon & Schuster. Mia Kankimäki is represented by Elina Ahlback Literary Agency and her book will be published in 17 languages; read more and see how to purchase here.

“[A]stute, entertaining….This insightful book will appeal to adventure enthusiasts and be an inspiration for those with an eye on hitting their stride later in life.”—Publisher’s Weekly

“A thought-provoking blend of history, biography, women’s studies, and travelog, this should appeal to readers interested in any of these subjects, and those who love eclectic narrative nonfiction.”—Library Journal

About the Author

Mia Kankimäki has worked with books all her life: she has a master’s degree in comparative literature from the University of Helsinki, and she has worked as a copywriter and editor at various publishing houses. Her travels in Tanzania, Kenya, Italy, and Japan in the footsteps of inspirational, historical female figures: fearless explorers, gifted writers and passionate artists, inspired her second book The
Women I Think About at Night: Traveling the Paths of My Heroes.

Mia Kankimäki currently lives in Helsinki, Finland, when she’s not traveling for her next book project.

About the Moderator

Heli Sirviö is the Lecturer for Finnish Language and Culture at Columbia University.She holds a Master’s Degree from Helsinki University Theater Academy, and has a broad, lifelong interest in literature and film.

She is delighted to see Finnish authors’ voices gaining audiences also in New York City.