This past week my group focused on the appropriation of black culture in elements of mainstream white pop culture trends. One of the biggest proprietors of this sort of culture stealing is the fashion industry. I mentioned in class Marc Jacobs recent SS17 line debut at NYFW, featuring white models in colorful dreads walking down the runway (photo in link). Not only is this blatant cultural appropriation, but when confronted by the media, Jacobs lashed out claiming “all who cry “cultural appropriation” or whatever nonsense about any race of skin color wearing their hair in a particular style or manner – funny how you don’t criticize women of color for straightening their hair”. This just highlights the larger issue at hand, that people do not even recognize that their appropriation as wrong, or even happening. One of the models featured-Kendall Jenner, member of the Kardashian empire, has also been pictured with her sisters in cornrows, and often praised in the media for setting the latest trend. This blatant, and consistent disregard for the appropriation of black culture that has been accepted and normalized in society and heavily influenced by the fashion world, which has maintained and monetized this vicious cycle.


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