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cultural appropriation

(273 Posts)
nceccoli Fri 26-Feb-16 01:07:45

Just had a discussion. aibu to say that cultural appropriation works both ways? A number of black bloggers and models have slated Kim Kardashian and Kylie jenner for wearing "boxer braids". But I have yet to see anyone commenting on Beyonce culturally appropriate Indian culture , hairstyle, dress and adornment for her song Hymn for the Weekend?

Fauchelevent Fri 26-Feb-16 01:13:10

Plenty of people have criticised Beyonce for that mess, you just didn't see it.

VimFuego101 Fri 26-Feb-16 01:15:22

What Fauchelevent said. Beyoncé was heavily criticized.

nceccoli Fri 26-Feb-16 01:20:31

Fauchelevent Fri 26-Feb-16 01:22:34

So... that's one article. Shall I find the ones where she was rightly criticised - probably more than Coldplay?"

nceccoli Fri 26-Feb-16 01:28:38

I find this strange, especially as the so called boxer braids look like tight Dutch braids. So how is it cultural appropriation?

nceccoli Fri 26-Feb-16 01:30:39

Is a braid unique to a single ethic culture?

Redroses11 Fri 26-Feb-16 01:32:45

Oh for goodness sake. Is this a thing now? appropriation? Good lord.

VinoTime Fri 26-Feb-16 01:46:06


Is that even a thing?

nceccoli Fri 26-Feb-16 01:48:14


Fauchelevent Fri 26-Feb-16 02:22:28

I don't know and haven't heard about this. I am black and have never heard of boxER braids (box braids are different) and couldn't give a shit about this particular hairstyle.

However, certain hairstyles came about from black people responding to and adapting their hair in various ways in response to racial (mis)treatment. They are hairstyles that got black people expelled, rejected/fired/sent home from jobs, bullied and laughed at. So you can imagine why some folks might at the very least find it ironic or perhaps be pissed off when said hairstyles, seen as thuggish/dirty/unkempt on black people is now the latest fashion trend amongst trendy white instagram bloggers.

I'm not talking about these boxer braids which have literally never appeared on my radar in 20something years of being black.

nceccoli Fri 26-Feb-16 02:38:57

Redroses11 Fri 26-Feb-16 02:40:54

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

Redroses11 Fri 26-Feb-16 02:43:34

In any case, by the looks of it, they're what we called French Plaits.

Bambalina Fri 26-Feb-16 02:45:15

I used to do boxer braids with my hair 20 years ago! At least. Never knew it was CA, but isn't that half the 'thing'. I think I only heard about cultural appropriation in the last 2 years
wonders about how many things I've unwittingly appropriated over the years

Fauchelevent Fri 26-Feb-16 02:57:53

Redroses* wooooowwwwwwwww

TitusAndromedon Fri 26-Feb-16 03:06:36

I can't speak to this particular example, but I do see an issue when cultural appropriation is someone from a majority group taking something from a repressed minority group. A good example is the appropriation of indigenous people's culture in the US. So, you might have young, white celebrities wearing headdresses at Coachella, or headdresses might be used as accessories in a fashion magazine photo shoot. It minimises the significant symbolic meaning of the headdress and its importance in the Native American culture, reducing it to simply a fashion accessory. That, in turn, minimises the importance of the culture in American society as a whole, which is already dangerous considering the ways in which indigenous people in the US have historically been discriminated against and abused.

MrsTerryPratchett Fri 26-Feb-16 03:17:24

I think we need to think critically about cultural appropriation. I live in Canada where native headdresses and eagle feathers are given to only people who are very special, warriors, leaders and elders. They are medicine. And yes, people get rightly pissed off when fucking hipsters wear them to raves.

But my family member who has Pakistani ILs wearing an outfit given to her, although she's white? I think fine.

There's stuff about intention, reception, history... Just wearing something from another culture isn't automatically bad.

sleeponeday Fri 26-Feb-16 03:24:01

Why can't you ever see it as a compliment? Imitation?

I take it that by "you" you are assuming that only black people can object, and that you can lump all black people into an amorphous mass, and that "you can't ever see it as a compliment" (asked in a rhetorical way, natch, because "you people" are just not as rational as sensible old you.

Fashions come and go. Not everything is related to slaves.

No, granted, which is why your banging on about slavery when nobody else has touched the subject is rather bizarre. Apparently, the moment someone mentions racism that's where your mind goes. Perhaps you should take your own advice?

You're not slaves anymore, so where is the problem?

So if someone isn't a slave, they have no right to point out racism? Interesting perspective.

They doin they hair like they be slaves?

We're not allowed to point out racism, are we? So mentioning that disgusting little attempt at pidgin English, all Gone With The Wind stereotypes and ignorant fucking stupidity, is probably best left on its foully racist little shelf.

you're a generation too late to take offence.

This white Anglo-Saxon Protestant finds all of your post utterly fucking offensive. And you're nobody to tell anybody anything whatsoever worth a piss in the wind on this subject, if your vile little post is any sort of guide.

lunar1 Fri 26-Feb-16 03:29:16

Redroses, who are you encompassing in you posts when you say you and we?

If im reading you correctly you posts are just about the most racist thing I have ever read on here.

GarlicShake Fri 26-Feb-16 03:43:07

There are a lot of weird posts here for a 20-post thread!

You cannot own plaits, though - I don't mean any specific "you", it applies to anyone daft enough to think a hairstyle can belong to their culture alone. People have been doing hair for as long as we've had it (before, actually - chimpanzees do each other's hair) and have been plaiting it for almost as long.

Here's an enjoyable slideshow about plaits smile

Lanark2 Fri 26-Feb-16 04:40:49

Are you saying that black people have appropriated chimpanzee culture, wtf?!?!

NickiFury Fri 26-Feb-16 05:01:31

FGS! Clearly the previous poster is NOT saying that at all! She's saying that in her opinion doing hair in a plait isn't something that can be attributed to black or white people. Even a certain kind of animal plaits it's hair/fur. Why did your mind relate the two? Hmm?

This is why people can never discuss these kinds of issues sensibly or are are reluctant to give them the necessary attention because they're a always someone ready to dive in and accuse them of something as ludicrous as that even when it's quite clear that wasn't what they meant. Not to mention the fear of getting the terminology wrong and being stamped on for that. The discussion then just becomes about defending oneself and that attitude is then carried forward to future discussion.

No doubt there'll be something wrong with how I have worded my post and I will be jumped on for that! I will continue to do what I usually do, which is discuss these kind of issues with my actual black friends who seem to have a hell of lot more patience and willingness to talk to me and never nit pick or respondaggressively.

Ladycrazycat Fri 26-Feb-16 05:07:03

I have a strong interest in indian culture and had not long come back from there when the Coldplay video came out. A lot was made about culture appropriation but I noted it was mostly by media outlets (western outlets in particular). The majority of Indians who commented under the articles online seemed to disagree and couldnt understand the problem/thought it was quite nice, where as those who were taking offence tended to be from the U.S. or UK (although some were non resident Indians or of indian origin, most didn't seem to be).

I thought that was an interesting stance. I don't really think we can get upset on behalf of a country or culture who aren't unhappy about the situation themselves!

I can't remember the incident but on our most recent trip to India, someone tried to get me to do something which would be considered culturally indian and I had a long chat with DH about culture appropriation and the fact I could see a lot of western media getting offended if I had done it, yet those in India were encouraging me to do it and were pleased to see a tourist embracing their culture.

NickiFury Fri 26-Feb-16 05:19:31

Dd and I had our hands painted with henna on a recent holiday. It looks beautiful and the woman who did was delighted we were doing it. We had a good chat about its origins and history. I suppose having that done would be considered cultural appropriation by some?

I agree with your post lady.

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