Hey BCIAW, I just have a quick question... If I see something in another culture that I appreciate and like and understand what it stands for in the culture (say, a bindi or a certain form of dress) would it still be cultural appropriation if I (a person not of that culture) wore it?
If that culture says that thing is not something that is okay for you to share with them, then yes.
Here is what I’ve written on this in the past:
I want to point you to an article by Everyday Feminism that does a great job of explaining the difference between cultural exchange and appropriation. To boil it down, taking things from other cultures, stripping them of their meaning, and appropriating them for your own use is bad. Having your own “special meaning” for it doesn’t excuse your behavior. You can appreciate and respect something without appropriating it. Although the lines between appropriate cultural exchange and cultural appropriation may be blurred, exchange should be mutual and invited.
That does not mean just taking something because you like it or think it is cool, even if you have respect for it and understand it. In these situations it is important to consider who has the power in these sorts of relationships, the history behind the situation, and what the group of people you are taking something from is saying about it. If they are saying what you are doing is appropriative and uninvited…stop doing it.
can someone send me a 3 page lyrical analysis of the spice girls’ “wannabe”
asking for a friend, thanks