June 04, 2014

Pharrell apologizes for headdress

Pharrell On Elle Cover Controversy: "I Am Genuinely Sorry"

The artist and producer apologized for wearing a Native American headdress on the cover of the fashion mag’s UK edition.

By Reggie Ugwu
On the cover of the July edition of Elle UK, Pharrell Williams replaced his usual headline-grabbing headwear with a traditional Native American headdress.

Many Native Americans and others were upset about the appropriation of the garment, which is considered to be the sacred garb of chiefs and warriors. They created the “#NotHappy” hashtag on Twitter.

Ashley Mocosa @mocosamoments
I'm seriously disappointed in @Pharrell for wearing a war bonnet on the cover of @ELLEmagazine #nothappy

Aparna Balakumar @OnceAPARNATime
Urgh. Why does the fashion industry insist on turning sacred cultural items into fashion props? #NOTHappy @ELLEUK
And:In a statement responding to the controversy, Pharrell has apologized, saying he meant no disrespect.

“I respect and honor every kind of race, background and culture,” Pharrell says. “I am genuinely sorry.”

Elle UK has not yet responded to a request for comment.
Pharrell Williams sorry for wearing First Nation headdress

Singer faces backlash after fans take to social media to say cultural appropriation is 'not cool'

By Connie Walker
The American singer is just the latest artist to be accused of cultural appropriation. After donning traditional First Nation gear in a music video last year, Gwen Stefani was also forced to apologize.

Chanel, Victoria's Secret, H&M, Urban Outfitters and Paul Frank have also come under fire for inappropriately using First Nations symbols or imagery in their fashions.

Although, offenders are often quick to apologize and claim they are attempting to honour First Nations culture, some say it is insulting and perpetuates stereotypes of indigenous people.
Comment:  For more apologies for wearing a headdresss, see Windy Apologizes for Headdress and Coyne Apologizes for Dog Headdress.

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