Ilta-Sanomat tabloid ad (lööppi) from August 19, 1992

by , under Enrique

Migrant Tales will begin to publish 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 the main stories of tabloids like Ilta-Sanomat and Iltalehti to see how they reflected some people’s xenophobic and racist views.  

We apologize to readers for the racist and xenophobic content of the material. Our intention is not to spread these social ills but to exposed it.

The tabloid ad below states pointing the finger accusingly: “The trail of million [Finnish mark] robbery leads to Estonia.”

Outside of the official Finnish-Soviet speeches and ceremonies during the cold war, Estonia and the former Soviet Union were places where some Finns could get cheap vodka and women. This “colonial” mentality by some Finns was reflected in tabloids. Even if some Finns had access to two important matters in their culture, vodka and women, they acted and treated their linguistic cousins arrogantly, disrespectfully and as bigots.

As a social illness, xenophobia and racism leave open wounds and scars on society. We don’t have to search far to find them because they exist right under our noses. Xenophobia and racism leave lots of witnesses. The only question is if we want to hear their evidence in society’s witness box.

*Migration Institute archive. 

  1. Seppo

    I seriously don’t see any xenophobia or racism in this lööppi. Those behind the robbery were probably Estonians or at least they took the money there. I don’t think this fact is displayed here in a manner that shows some sort of disrespect or even less racism towards the Estonians.

    Otherwise I agree that there has been and still is some arrogance in the attitudes of Finns towards Estonians. It’s similar to the way many Swedes look or used to look at Finns. I guess every nation seeks to find someone to look down on and feel superior to. Stupid and rude but that’s how it seems to be.