Posts Tagged: Otherness

QUOTE OF THE DAY: What must be done to speed up adaption?

There are many things that one can do to retard or facilitate adaption of newcomers to Finland. One of the worst is constant suspicion by politicians who have no qualifications or understanding of migration. Good examples are National Coalition Party MP Pia Kauma who does not have the faintest idea about migrants but is still

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Dana’s Alppikulma diary: 10 homeless people and others

MAY 19: Yesterday, in front of the Alppikulma gate, more than 10 homeless people were waiting at 5 o’clock to enter the building. A foreigner from an African country who shaves his head is under so much pressure that he does strange things. But I will only describe his work yesterday. He has to carry

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Migrant Tales Literary: Canary of light

By Dana رقناری آی قناریها برایم آواز بخوانید چون من اسیر دست فنلاندم، گرفتارم در یک قفس در بندماین قفس جنس آتشی دارد، بی نور و پنجره، نگهبان و پلیس های زشت وحشی و پا پتی دارد. فنلاند کشور سیاهچاله هاست، کشور شکنجه و قحطی و درد و مرگ و بلاست.من در این کشور بدام افتادم، بالهایم را شکستند و پاهایم

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QUOTE OF THE DAY: Racism in Finland? You ain’t seen nothing yet!

When I came to live permanently in Finland over 40 years ago, people like me were seen as an ethnic anomaly. Sometimes having a different skin color or looking “foreign” meant receiving microaggressions like people shoving your child with a lighted cigarette that burns them, or hearing a perfect stranger saying something racist to you

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Part I: Racism causes trauma and mental suffering

Maailman Kuvalehti, a periodical which often takes up issues of xenophobia and racism in Finland more bravely than the mainstream media, cited the article Häpeää, itsesyytöksiä, masennusta – toistuvan rasismin vaikutukset mielenterveyteen voivat olla vakavat (Shame, self-blame, and depression – continuous racism encounter impact on mental wellbeing can be severe). Dated April 24th to a study by Robert T. Carter (University of Columbia), it stated that day-to-day exclusion encounters cause mental depression and symptoms similar to war trauma. Read the article here.

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Camilla Edström Ödemark (March 29, 2015): Exposing White Voids

Camilla Edström Ödemark is an artist from Åland who moved from her native Mariehamn to Sweden after she graduated from high school. Her artwork hits a sensitive spot especially if you’re in that sometimes challenging situation of adapting to a new country.  Ödemark says that her work focuses on what or who is “abnormal” or

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Migrant Tales Literary: A return in Pixles

I pulled out my laptop and went on Google Earth. I typed in my mother’s childhood home address, but Google Earth didn’t recognize any matching location. I decided to turn to my mother and carried the spacecraft-like laptop to her. After placing it on top of an orange table mat, I asked her to help me

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Koko Hubara: The brave woman who founded the brown girl’s blog

Koko Hubara is a young energetic woman who founded a few weeks ago on Valentine’s Day a blog called Ruskeat Tytöt, or brown girls. The interest that her blog has received in such a short time surprised her. Why would anyone be interested in a blog about Other Finns? Is it because there are already so

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Artist Kiba Lumberg: “Don’t box me in!”

In order to understand Kiba Lumberg, 57, you need to know some Finnish history, the plight of minorities like the Roma, and what it is like to live in worlds shaded by different hues of grey. Since this story is about an artist who doesn’t want to conform to set norms imposed on her by

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Finland’s tolerance for cultural diversity is being tested to the limit these days

Finland’s tolerance to Otherness is being tested to the limit these days. If we look at it from a political perspective, the knee-jerk reaction is clear. Denying that there isn’t a connection between the stellar rise of an anti-EU, anti-immigration and anti-Islam party and our ever-growing cultural diversity is understanding a little or erroneously the

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