The problem with cultural appropriation is that it replaces the original with a copy created by the dominant culture. It dilutes the original, removes all symbolic value from it and replaces it with a ready to consume product devoid of context and meaning.
Cultural appropriation, at its most extreme, is a violent form of colonization because it removes the original group behind the culture and reinforces stereotypes about that group (i.e. ALL First Nation folks are reduced to “war bonnets”, whether their culture uses them or not; all Latin@s are reduced to a stylized version of Catholicism regardless of their spirituality; etc.). The mechanism of commodifying a culture ends up being a tool to re-inforce [sic] racism as it reduces the people behind those cultures to a mere cartoon like representation of their realities. It’s a great way to ultimately Other and objectify entire groups of people by taking something that is dynamic and ever evolving and freezing it for a marketing photo opportunity.
“I am Nigerian because a white man created Nigeria and gave me that identity. I am black because the white man constructed black to be as different as possible from his white. But I was Igbo before the white man came.”
“Men have called me a man-hater, a feminazi, frigid, a bitch… but in my mind it always translates as, ‘You don’t need me to validate your existence, and that scares me.’”—HBI Member, Kim (via safercampus)
“Sure, the library is an old fashioned concept. So is democracy. So is equal opportunity. So is getting your facts right.”—Why We Need Free Public Libraries More Than Ever via The Atlantic (via 10engines)
Make your smile sweet to see, don’t you take this away I’m still wanting my face on your cheek And when we break, we’ll wait for our miracle God is a place where some holy spectacle lies And when we break, we’ll wait for our miracle God is a place you will wait for the rest of your life
Two headed boy, she is all you could need She will feed you tomatoes and radio wires And retire to sheets safe and clean But don’t hate her when she gets up to leave
Heems - New York City Cops Michael Stewart, Eleanor Bumpurs, Amadou Diallo, Patrick Dorismond, Alberta Spruill, Timothy Stansbury, Abner Louima, Sean Bell, Ousmane Zongo, Randolph Evans, Anthony Baez, Clifford Glover, and Fermin Arzou were senselessly beaten or killed by the NYPD while unarmed. - Himanshu Suri