Fierce

Adele’s Bantu Knots Spark Conversations About The Barriers Of Cultural Appropriation And What’s Worth The Upset

If you thought nothing else about 2020 could surprise you anymore, you clearly haven’t seen what’s up with Adele.

Over the weekend the “Hello” singer posted an image of herself to Instagram that quickly found itself under scrutiny. In the photo, Adele is seeing wearing a Jamaican flag bikini top and Bantu knots in her hair. The caption for the post reads “Happy what would be Notting Hill Carnival my beloved London.” A series of flags from Great Britain and Jamaica end the caption.

Adele’s photo appears to be an attempt at cultural appreciation gone off the tilt.

According to Newsweek, “The Notting Hill Carnival is a popular annual event that’s significant in Black British culture, and it takes place during the Sunday and Monday of the country’s August Bank Holiday weekend. The carnival that began in 1966 has taken on a Caribbean flavor since 1976, but it was canceled this year because of COVID-19.”

The cancellation of the event hasn’t kept people from participating in the event virtually in their own ways however. Certainly, it didn’t hold Adele back. The singer wore the traditional African hairstyle that according to NaturallyCurly.com, has been around for over a century. “Bantu” is a term that describes hundreds of African tribes that spoke the “Bantu” language. It does not, however, belong to any one group of people in particular.

Still, it’s easy to understand why Adele’s decision to wear the look has drawn some criticism and brow raises.

In recent years, conversations about cultural appropriation have become commonplace on platforms like Instagram and Twitter. Cancel and Callout Culture have led users to become up in arms whenever a person seems to appropriate the culture of another group. The ire of these hypercritical cultures often seems to know no difference between people who are well-meaning and those who are just intending to be mean.

And while it is true that the misuse and misrepresentation of minority cultures can perpetuate harmful stereotypes and even be seen as an exploitative form of colonialism, in Adele’s case many are wondering whether this is the case.

“All this crying about silly things is getting boring now mind, remember when black people had real issues to fight for…now they get triggered by a white woman’s hairstyle,” one user wrote in the comments section of Adele’s post.

“If 2020 couldn’t get any more bizarre, Adele is giving us Bantu knots and cultural appropriation that nobody asked for. This officially marks all of the top white women in pop as problematic. Hate to see it,” journalist Ernest Owens commented about the image.

“WE LOVE SEEING OUR FLAG EVERYWHERE!!!!” one person wrote in the comments. “This made me smile. It shows the impact my little island has on the whole world. How influential we truly are.”

Still, some have been quick to remind others that while yes Adele’s post is odd and problematic the singer has long been an ally of black people.

She has paid tribute to Black people and Black artistry in appropriate ways. Let’s give her a chance to do it again? After all, as the carnival’s executive director, Matthew Phillip pointed out to The Guardian over the weekend, the event has particular significance this year.

“For more than 50 years carnival has been a statement that Black Lives Matter,” Phillip pointed out. “That’s normal practice for us, it’s not something that we’re just jumping on now because of the current global climate and what’s going on. Carnival has been making these statements for 50 years… In a year when people have been protesting against the treatment of black people, I think this is a good way of showing that we have something to contribute, something that is positive.”


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Another International Brand Has Been Accused Of Copying Indigenous Mexican Designs

Entertainment

Another International Brand Has Been Accused Of Copying Indigenous Mexican Designs

DANIEL LEAL-OLIVAS/AFP via Getty Images

Although it comes as no surprise, it’s still as frustrating as ever that an international fashion brand has ripped off traditional designs of Indigenous cultures. This time, it’s an Australian label that appears to have copied the designs of Mexico’s Mazatec community.

Although the company has already pulled the allegedly copied dress, the damage appears to have been done as many are rightfully outraged at their blatant plagiarism.

Australia’s Zimmermann brand has been accused of copying designs from Mexico’s Indigenous community.

Mazatec people from the Mexican state of Oaxaca have expressed their outrage over yet another attack on their traditions. They claim that an Australian company – Zimmermann – has copied a Mazatec huipil design to make its own tunic dress. The dress, which was part of the company’s 2021 Resort collection and retailed for USD $850, has since been pulled from the company’s website due to the criticism.

Zimmermann is an Australian fashion house that has stores across the U.S., England, France, and Italy. While the huipil is a loose-fitting tunic commonly worn by both Indigenous and non-Indigenous women across Mexico.

It’s hard to argue that the brand didn’t deliberately copy the Oaxacan design.

Credit: Francoise CAVAZZANA/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

When you look at the Zimmermann tunic dress alongside a traditional huipil, it’s hard not to see the resemblance. The cut of the Zimmermann dress, the birds and flowers embroidered on it and its colors all resemble a traditional Mazatec huipil. 

Changes made to the original design – the Zimmermann dress sits above the knees and unlike a huipil is not intended to be worn with pants or a skirt – are disrespectful of the Mazatac culture and world view.

The Oaxaca Institute of Crafts also condemned Zimmermann and called on the brand to clarify the origin of its design.

For their part, Zimmermann has pulled the dress and issued an apology.

Zimmermann subsequently issued a statement on social media, acknowledging that the tunic dress was inspired by huipiles from Oaxaca

“Zimmermann acknowledges that the paneled tunic dress from our current Swim collection was inspired by what we now understand to be a traditional garment from the Oaxaca region in Mexico,” it said.

“We apologize for the usage without appropriate credit to the cultural owners of this form of dress and for the offense this has caused. Although the error was unintentional, when it was brought to our attention today, the item was immediately withdrawn from all Zimmermann stores and our website. We have taken steps to ensure this does not happen again in future.”

However, it’s far from the first time that an international brand has profited off of Indigenous designs.

Unfortunately, international fashion companies ripping off traditional garments and designs – especially those of Indigenous cultures – is far too common. Several major companies have been accused of plagiarism within the last year.

In fact, the problem has become so widespread that Mexico created a government task force to help find and denounce similar plagiarism in the future. Among the other designers/brands that have been denounced for the practice are Isabel Marant, Carolina Herrera, Mango and Pippa Holt.

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Kellyanne Conway Now Facing Additional Investigation After Nude Photos Of Her Underaged Daughter Were Posted From Her Twitter Account

Things That Matter

Kellyanne Conway Now Facing Additional Investigation After Nude Photos Of Her Underaged Daughter Were Posted From Her Twitter Account

Chip Somodevilla / Getty

Updated January 27, 2021.

Last summer Claudia Conway, Kellyanne Conway’s daughter, gained national attention when she began to express her anti-Trump views on the social platform TikTok. At the start, it became clear that despite her parents’ high profile political positions Claudia was going to speak her mind and be honest about her thoughts on the now-former- American president. In her videos, Claudia criticized Trump for his policies and divisive nature, slammed her mother for her part in supporting him and spoke openly about the toxic nature of her own home.

Now, Claudia is coming to the surface again, this time to lambast her mother for her apparent abuse.

Last week, it was revealed was that Kellyanne Conway was under a police investigation after Claudia claimed she was being abused by the former campaign manager to Donald Trump.

According to OK!, a member of the Alpine Police Department claimed that officers responded to the Conway’s household lat Wednesday, January 20, in response to a “juvenile matter.” The issue is apparently now under investigation after a third party (not Claudia) reported an incident.

In a video posted to TikTok last week, Claudia could be seen telling officers that she felt unsafe. Last week, Claudia quickly went viral after posting videos of a woman she claimed to be her mother verbally and physically abusing her.

At one point, the person off-camera purported to be Kellyanne Conway screams calls Claudia an “ungrateful b**tch” and later says “You’re lucky your mom’s pro-life.”

The ex-counselor to the disgraced former president is now being accused of posting a topless picture of Claudia on Twitter.

According to captures posted by users on social media, the topless photos were shared from Conway’s account, @KellyannePolls on Twitter’s Fleet. The image was eventually taken down but not before Twitter users took screenshots. According to Variety, “On TikTok, Claudia Conway on Monday posted videos confirming that the picture was authentic; those have since been deleted from her TikTok account but Twitter users reposted copies of the videos. In the videos, a visibly upset Claudia Conway speculated that her mother may have accidentally posted the image.”

“I’m assuming my mom took a picture of it to use against me one day and then somebody hacked her or something,” Conway wrote about the post. “I’m literally at a loss for words. If you see it, report it.”

In a post to TikTok, Claudia Conway claimed that “nobody would ever have any photo like that, ever. So, Kellyanne, you’re going to fucking jail.”

In several updates posted to TikTok videos on Tuesday morning, Claudia Conway asked users to “stop calling authorities” and announced that she and her mother are now “taking a break from social media.”

“I know that my mom would never, ever post anything to hurt me like that intentionally, and I do believe she was hacked,” Claudia Conway said in one of the videos posted to TikTok.

Claudia’s TikTok profile led her parents to attempt to ban her from social media.

Claudia’s hiatus from social media did not last long. Claudia is famous for trolling her parents on social media. Her level of trolling her parents, Kellyanne and George, outraged Kellyanne to the point of forcibly taking Claudia’s phone in a video.

In July, the daughter of Donald Trump’s right-hand man and personal “alternative fact-checker” (Kellyanne Conway) made headlines when journalists caught wind of her anti-Trump and pro-BLM TikTok videos. Now, Kellyanne’s daughter, Claudia, is speaking up again this time about her parents.

Claudia’s decision to speak out once again comes at the hands of her father’s latest tweet.

Only July 3, Conway’s father George spoke out in response to recent interviews with his daughter writing: “To journalists: @kellyannepolls and I do not consent to any communications between you and any of our minor children, including our daughter Claudia. So desist. Thank you.”

In a series of tweets that have now been deleted Claudia responded to her father “You’re just mad that I’m finally getting my voice heard. Sorry your marriage failed” according to Complex.

Claudia reportedly posted a series of tweets in response to accusations that she was angry. “Bahah I’m not angry, I’m chillin, I’m just over both of my parents trying to silence me” Claudia wrote in one of the now-deleted tweets and continuing by saying “my parents, particularly my mother, are trying to silence me by getting me to delete my social media. haha.”

At the time Claudia opened up about her decision to speak against Trump to Insider, explaining that despite the family’s polarizing political dynamics, she respects her parents. “They are the most generous, most well-educated people I have ever met,” Claudia said. “I look up to them and want nothing but success and good fortune for them. They are my parents and that trumps all — no pun intended.”

Clearly, when it comes to Kellyanne Conway, it turns out her apples are falling far from the tree.

Over the summervideos and posts shared from Claudia’s TikTok and Instagram posts revealed at least one out of four of Conway’s children isn’t a fan of her mother’s political party.

New York Times reporter Taylor Lorenz thrust Claudia into the spotlight earlier this week when she shared a string of videos taken and posed by the teenager which feature her ribbing Trump supporters for their politics. In several posts, Claudia encouraged TikTok followers, which the Times has said clocks in at 16,000, to leave one-star reviews of the president’s businesses. She has also used her pages to make fun of the difficulty of having political opinions different from that of her politically polarized parents.

“Believe it or not you can have your own opinions simply by educating yourself,” Claudia said in one video.

In another TikTok post, Claudia wrote “why do people hate on trump supporters… like why can’t we just respect everyone’s opinions? SIKE nah block me pls and then educate yourself.”

Note: Ivanka Trump DOES follow Claudia on Instagram which means this teen has some cajones.

Claudia has also expressed support for Black Lives Matter protests.

In the bio section of her TikTok account, Claudia writes, “it’s a great day to arrest brett hankison, john mattingly, and myles cosgrove.” The post is a reference to the death of Breonna Taylor who was shot and killed by Louisville, Kentucky police in her own home. According to The Washington Post, Taylor’s family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the officers. As of today, only Brett Hankison has been fired from the Louisville Metro Police.

Claudia isn’t the first Conway with liberals to cause some trouble for Kellyanne.

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1108335293671845888?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1108335293671845888%7Ctwgr%5E&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.washingtonpost.com%2Fpolitics%2Fhusband-from-hell-trump-escalates-feud-with-spouse-of-kellyanne-conway%2F2019%2F03%2F20%2F587a03d8-4b07-11e9-93d0-64dbcf38ba41_story.html

Conway’s husband George Conway, whom she married in April 2001, has been vocal about his negative opinions of Donald Trump. Throughout Trump’s presidency, Conway has questioned the president’s mental health, judgment, and intelligence. He has also drawn criticism from the president directly.

In 2019, Trump tweeted about Conway’s marriage to George Conway writing “George Conway, often referred to as Mr. Kellyanne Conway by those who know him, is VERY jealous of his wife’s success & angry that I, with her help, didn’t give him the job he so desperately wanted. I barely know him but just take a look, a stone cold LOSER & husband from hell!” 

In a comment to Claudia’s recent post about having different opinions than your parents, one follower wrote “Hello sis welcome to the left,” to which Claudia replied. “Hehe I’ve been here girly.”

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