Under and Tuglas Literature Centre of the Estonian Academy of Sciences is an institution of research and development of the Estonian Academy of Sciences.
Its mission is to study Estonian literary culture from the historical and theoretical perspective, within the context of the historically multilingual Baltic literary space and world literature, as well as to promote cultural and literary thought in line with global modern trends (discourse analysis, rhetorical and narratological models of culture, postcolonial theory and the theory of cultural transfer, the ‘entangled history’ approach, memory and gender studies). In addition to fiction and theatrical texts, the Centre’s research covers numerous formats of historiographical, philosophical, publicistic and scholarly expression in the Estonian and German languages to the extent that they used to play a decisive role in the Baltic literary space in earlier times, together with the texts that proved to be important within the European history of ideas and have influenced mentality on a wider scale as well as locally, in the Baltic States. Within the scope of theoretical background research, the Pan-European history of certain underlying concepts and mindsets is studied (tradition of antithetic thinking, concept of infinity, decadence, soliloquy-style writing, grotesque).
Within its development activities, the Literature Centre publishes original studies and source materials of Estonian national literature and written word in Humanities, maintains a collection of books and art of historical value, and organises conferences, exhibitions and other events of cultural importance. The Museum Department of Literature Centre in Nõmme administrates the legacy of the writer and Member of Academy Friedebert Tuglas and other collections (including the book and art collection of Friedebert Tuglas; the book and art collection which formerly belonged to Artur Adson and Marie Under, and which arrived in Estonia in 1996; the art collection of the Foundation for Estonian Arts and Letters; and the book and art collection of Paul Reets) as well as the house and the adjoining garden, which is of high dendrological value. It also organises lecture tours and hosts researchers and visitors.
The major areas of research of the Literature Centre
- Estonian literature and culture in the 20th century (including the works of F. Tuglas, M. Under and A. Adson)
- Older Estonian and Baltic German literary culture in the 13th to 19th centuries and the role of the German and Latin culture of the Baltics in the formation of modern Estonian culture
- Mechanisms of cultural identity in Estonian literary culture (autogenesis, cultural transfer and entanglement)
- Baltic literary space and literary relations between Estonia, Latvia and Finland
- Underlying rhetorical and discourse studies for the description of European and Estonian culture
- Drama and theatre research