According to a widespread view, ‘foreigners’ – or immigrants – tend to snatch away jobs from the local population. The poem ‘Stumpf auf d’Gadschi’ [Hatred of Strangers] exposes this view as a xenophobic prejudice, since those ‘foreigners’ do a vast amount of the work that the locals themselves do not want to do – that is, be always on hand to clean up the dirt.
The scene is observed by a first-person narrator who silently comments on it. Although the ‘I’ seems to belong clearly to the ‘we’ – here, the people of Tyrol – the text draws possible parallels between the ‘I’ and the ‘foreigners’. This is especially evident in the Yenish version of the poem, in which the ‘foreigners’ are referred to as Gadschi, a term used generally in Yenish for all non-Yenish people.
Ultimately, it remains unclear whether the similar experiences of discrimination and exclusion experienced by Yenish and ‘foreigners’ through the native Gadschi can provide a basis for solidarity between the different groups.
Mungenast, Romedius (ed.) (2001). Jenische Reminiszenzen. Geschichte(n), Gedichte. Landeck: EYE Literaturverlag, p. 143.