Erojen yhdentekevyydestä jokapäiväiseen rasismiin

Monikulttuurisia kohtaamisia Helsingin lähiöissä


  • Karoliina Ojanen


conviviality, racism, multiculturalism, ethnography


In this article I examine how the inhabitants of the city with an immigrant background experience the public space in a suburb of Helsinki: how Finnish diversity is produced as lived everyday practices. The data analyzed in the article consists of interviews of 26 inhabitants who have an immigrant background. The starting point is to analyze the shape of interethnic encounters and how they are formed in relation to public spaces. The article rests on the idea of urban space as constantly produced and altered through social practices and cultural meanings combined with intersectionality. I analyze the interviews applying the concepts cosmopolitan canopy and conviviality. These concepts refer to the idea that a semi-public urban space encourages people to adopt a positive attitude towards one another in a way that reflects civility and tolerance. In these kinds of spaces ethnicity and race can be and often are visible but unpronounced factors, which give potential to cross the possible ethnic boundaries. On the one hand, my analysis supports these ideas: people experience their city as a positive multicultural space. However, on the other hand, racism is a very common experience among the interviewees. The differences in the experiences are related to intersectionality and how one is positioned in regard to different social hierarchical categories and the social resources s/he has access to. All in all, the experiences are framed by Finnish immigration policy and discussions regarding the issue. These both affect the everyday life of the inhabitants of the city.





Ojanen, K. (2018). Erojen yhdentekevyydestä jokapäiväiseen rasismiin: Monikulttuurisia kohtaamisia Helsingin lähiöissä. Alue ja Ympäristö, 47(1), 17–30.