What Exactly Is Cultural Appropriation?


– A lot of people have been talking about cultural appropriation. But, what exactly is it? A quick search tells you, “the adoption or use of
elements of one culture “by members of a different culture.” But, there is a blurred line between appreciation and appropriation. Like when you’re jamming out
in a Native American headdress, just because it looks cool? That’s appropriation. It happens in music, in fashion, and in movies and TV. Oh, and just a reminder, blackface is never okay. And neither is redface for that matter! Appropriation occurs
when a privileged culture borrows from a marginalized one. An appropriator can be a
celebrity rocking cornrows, when their hair clearly doesn’t need them. Or even someone sporting a tribal tattoo, when they have no idea what
the design actually means. Culture is more than just a
cool style or a new trend, and it doesn’t matter if it’s
just a Halloween costume. Because in case you didn’t realize, these are racist! But you can still
appreciate another culture by learning about other traditions, trying an authentic cuisine, travelling to new countries, and following their customs. Or even being invited to a
cultural event or ceremony! Moral of the story, don’t appropriate, appreciate!

56 thoughts on “What Exactly Is Cultural Appropriation?

  1. appropriation/appreciation, whatever. This discussion is dumb.
    "wearing cornrows why they obviously don't need them"–so corn rows are a necessity for the culture they come from?

    a lot of Asian business people where suits. are suit & ties originally from asia or europe? is that cultural appropriation or appreciation? …see, that's a dumb question.

  2. He failed to explain how this is a bad thing. Also what dictates rather or not a culture is "privileged" or "marginalized". He showed a picture of Justin Bieber. He just seems like an everyday normal American (or Canadian) to me, what "privileged culture" does he belong to?

  3. No, I won't think twice. If your culture does something that I like, I might just steal it and do it myself. That is, after all, how culture works. Like religion, it is syncretic in nature. They borrow from one another.

  4. Jesus christ this video is so condescending…
    X is racist! No it isn't. Wearing a feather headdress doesn't make you racist. Imagine telling all the kids in primary school

  5. Alright so I once visited an Italian-themed restaurant, in China, owned by Koreans. I'm not sure which culture is the privileged one in that context, is it appropriation? In fairness, it wasn't very authentic.

    I also need to know if its okay to be listening to Japanese music groups that appropriate western rock and rap music, or if they're supposed to stick to their own culture. Since western culture is 'privileged' in the context of western countries, but becomes 'marginalized' in racially homogenous nonwhite countries. Are asians supposed to not import anything without the permission of white people?

    But hey, at least this is one topic the Huffington Post and the KKK can agree on.

  6. HuffPost often goes the extra mile in trying to paint people as racist. I'm starting a new series on political correctness partly because I've seen so many videos with this mindset. It will be short episodes on different interesting topics that stem from regressive ideas

  7. Never mind all the PC bullshit, skip to 0:39 to see a chick's smoking body. Then vote dislike on this video for common sense.

  8. I'm someone who identifies as liberal, but I'm growing increasingly tired of this kind of flagrant stupidity and how popular it's getting.

  9. Huff Post journalists should thanks for alphabet to romans who culturally apropiated the etruscans, to etruscans who culturally apropiated greeks, to greeks who culturally apropiated phoenicians, to phoenicians who culturally apropiated the ancient semitic miners from Sinai Peninsula, to ancient semitic miners from Sinai Peninsula who culturally apropiated some Egyptian hieroglyphs by turning them into a working alphabet.

  10. I wouldn't say that cultural appropriation is racist but it is ignorant.

  11. No it's appreciation. At some point we picked up on other cultures so I guess we are all guilty.

  12. I guess that everyone that isn't white should stop eating sandwiches, which were invented by English aristocrats in the 1600s. Everyone not Italian shouldn't eat pizza or spaghetti. Everyone that isn't Latino shouldn't celebrate Día de los Muertos, and Latinos shouldn't celebrate July 4th. According to the Left, cultural appropriation is something that is only bad when white people do it. Last time I checked, having different standards for different races is called R A C I S M. Now, I'm not one of those people that thinks the white race is in danger or that anti-white racism is everywhere. I believe in white privilege, even though I don't think it is as big of a problem as some may have you believe. I am not white, and I've felt more racism, even if it is with good intentions, come from liberals. Liberals always assume that I am oppressed and can't make decisions for myself, etc. I have felt more racism from liberals than conservatives. Anyway, anti-white racism DOES exist, even if it isn't everywhere. Stuff like this video is why the future generation is turning out to be the most conservative since the 1940s.

  13. There is no such thing as cultural appropriation. This whole concept is a creation of the Marxist Fasciest Progressive Left, to keep people apart. They do not want people to come together as one. They can't use people who all get along.

    Culture is a fluid thing. It has been changing since the beginning of time. It evolves as people evolve. It changes when different groups come togethe, whether they come together for good reasons or bad reasons. Every culture is made up of bits and pieces introduced from other cultures. Culture belongs to human beings.

  14. Appropriation=Taking full credit
    Apreciation=Enjoying it by wearing , eating ect.
    But srsly. Get a life ppl. 10yers agi this wouldnt have made news…why now?

  15. You are culturaly appropiating medieval european monks because you are wearing a hoodie.

  16. I don't care what the leftist say about this. I'll do what ever I want and the leftist can't really stop me.

  17. Hey is that anime in the US? I don't think so! That's cultural appropriation and it's taking us over clearly we need racial purity by going so far left that we've come out the other end in the right acting like Hitler.

  18. You have morr deslikes then likes so you know that means your a dick but the way you talk makes it even more clear

  19. Through out history cultures have been 'appropriating' from each other, this is how our current culture has formed. The very word appropriation was appropriated from Latin. If by your definition I go to China or Japan I can appropriate all I want because I am marginalized, or are you saying that only white people can be guilty of 'cultural appropriation' in which case you are racist. Language, writing, technology, dress, food etc, these are all free game. Please stop spouting stupidity like it is fact.

  20. I need to appropriate from the Romans, who took it from the Greeks, and you'll all have to forgive me. Whomever wrote this script (I can't really blame the mouthpiece), You're an IDIOT!

  21. I appreciate how the comments all discuss how this isn't a thing.
    My kids school newsletter (embarrassingly) linked to this video. They're kids–they're not going to pick a costume because they hold some malevolence toward others.

  22. If you claim that cultural appropriation is racist or morally wrong, then you are an uneducated twit. End of story. No exceptions. You are simply a brain dead NPC.

  23. There is nothing that is done by only one culture. I can't think of any cultural thing that has not been done at one time, and probably earlier than in other places, in Europe. Elflocks, feathers, most anything.

  24. Hey HoffPust if that's the case, if you live in America… everything you use is cultural appropriation… because America is a melting pot and everything in Western culture is inspired from someone else's culture.. or is! And I think if some one who's not black wears cornrows, they should know that they're wearing something of black culture and basic things about, if they're completely ignorant about it…theeeeennnnn that ain't it chief. I'm Indian, and I don't get offended if someone wears a bindhi..but if for example a celebrity wears it then the next day someone wearing a bindhi says "Wow so and so is so creative…she thought of something called a headdress and it's Soo cute" then I'mma get mad because not only do they not know the real term but they now believe that the idea is new….ya know what I'm sayin?

  25. When a “privileged cultural” borrows from a non-privileged cultural. I can easily tell you this is somewhat false by using history. When imperialism was happening to Asia and Africa, Japan had join the battle. Along with them joining Japan also started to take western ideas from clothing to inventions.

  26. Durrrrrr you are permitted to visit other cultures, eat their cuisine, follow their customs, and participate in ceremonial events. But wearing clothing related to that culture is appropriating it.

    How retarded

  27. Funny to me how everyone who doesn’t get it is white. Cultural appropriation is not giving credit where it’s due and stealing something from an underprivileged group of people/culture. It’s like a white girl wearing a durag for the sake of “fashion” or “looking cool” when African Americans are the most discriminated group in America and constantly have to go through bullshit. Or wearing a Native American headdress when your putting a pipeline through their territory. You don’t know anything about the culture or where the piece of culture your appropriating came from, what it is, what it means, and you’re just taking it because you think it looks cool. It’s like Boderick braids. Those braids are what were worn by African Americans for the longest time they are African braids yet people call them Boderick braids. Get it?

  28. Isn't it disgusting when white people learn other languages? They're clearly trying to reintroduce colonialism and slavery. Can't fool us, white people!!

  29. cultural appropriation is as ridiculous a concept as the kingdom of Xcrementa

  30. Wait, so only “privileged” people can appropriate then… Can you please write a handbook on this bullshit. It’s really hard to follow all of the new rules for whites. 🙄.

  31. Cultural appropriation is a really bad ideology. If you look at how ideas have been adapted among societies you can immediately see that most of our 'normal' everyday items, foods, habits, … have been borrowed from other cultures. Cucumber, potato, almost all spices, dresses from shoes to pants… what about what even constitutes a culture. Cafes were invented by Arabs, a long time ago all the people have been dead for centuries, so who should we thank? Should we all be thanking 1800 century bearded white men every time you turn on the lights that is nonsense.

    Of course you can upset people by making fun of them, for example you can act in a demeaning way or being deliberately racist. But hair styles and fashion items are not made in trying to make fun of anyone, so steal what ever you like, that's how societies work the best. I am a liberal, but when I see a stupid ideology that has little merit when put under the microscope I want to say something.

    So my recommendation steal whatever idea you like, and call it BENCHMARKING!

  32. I think white people are marginalized ones….being told what to do..say and wear. Yet people can do what we do ..wear what we invented and do whatever

  33. White people are appropriating Yoga because you cannot take Hinduism out
    of yoga. Yoga is founded by Hindus. Ever since Beatles learn yoga about
    and took it to West, Westerners have been making money out of it. Thank
    you for admitting that westerners are appropriating yoga. it makes them
    uncomfortable that when you practice yoga you are praying to Hindu gods
    so they deny that yoga is Hindu practice.

    The problem is
    Westerners want to practice yoga but do not want to give credit to
    Hindus who found it and also deny the fact that yoga is Hinduism. I have
    heard Westerners take away the Hindu religious aspect from yoga so as
    Christians they don't feel guilty about practicing yoga since yoga is
    Hinduism. Reality is that if you practice yoga then you ARE practicing
    Hinduism.

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