July 15, 2014

Ralph Lauren's fetishistic Native collection

Earth to Ralph Lauren: American Indian Iconography is a Hotbed for Scandal

By Abe Sauer[T]ailing the football team is a wagon train of scandals involving celebrities and brands criticized for recently using Native American headdresses as fashion accessories. These cases make Ralph Lauren's ongoing obsession with using Native American headdress iconography all the more confusing. Is the brand just begging to be added to the criticism?

Those who have found themselves apologizing for the misuse of Native headdresses include music icons Pharrell and Gwen Stefani. Chanel "deeply apologized" after its headdress scandal and Victoria's Secret "sincerely apologized" after a similar event. Even lesser-knowns have come under fire, such as the daughter of Oklahoma's governor.

One would think that after all of the media attention, it would be common sense to avoid a fashion statement that clearly is an insult to a large group of people. But apparently Ralph Lauren doesn't read the news, because the brand has a whole new collection so heavily reliant on American Indian iconography that it almost seems fetishistic.
Comment:  For more on the subject, see Kanye's T-Shirts Feature Indian Skulls and Humboldt Republic's "Chief Life" T-Shirts.

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