Migrant Tales publishes on and off Finnish tabloid ads* (lööppi in Finnish) from the 1990s. Taking into account that Finland’s immigrant population started to grow during that decade, it is easy at least through some of the main stories of tabloids like Ilta-Sanomat and Iltalehti to see how some of them reflected our xenophobic and racist views.
Migrant Tales apologizes for the racist content. Some ads that one can find from the 1930s and later in Finland are too offensive to publish on our blog. Some of these include shoe polish, bubble gum, licorice and other products.
One may correctly ask where hatred for certain groups by some Finns came from. The Ilta-Sanomat billboard is pretty explicit: Somalis swindled [authorities] into giving them asylum.
When I was working for a Finnish family magazine called Apu in the late-1980s and early 1990s, the term “swindle,” huijata, was a no-no. If you accused somebody of being a swindler you had to have pretty strong evidence because it was a pretty bold accusation to would land you in court. While the Finnish media took great caution in labeling someone a swindler in their stories, they apparently didn’t have any problems labeling Somalis.
*Migration Institute archive.