maasai jewelry

hynem  asked:

How do you feel when you see an african american wearing african clothing? I know a lot of people dont see it as cultural appropriation but I really don’t know. like I just dont know. what do you guys think? Ive heard some opinions and points about this but i would like to hear a few more. Thanks!

The whole ‘African Americans appropriating African Culture’ thing gets me upset soley because African culture(s) are treated monolithically. As if Africa as a whole goes by a certain one set of cultural traditions and customs that are a free for all for anyone who is black. No.

1. There’s no ‘African culture’. There’s culture(s). Thousands of diverse cultures varying on many different aspects.

2. The issue I’m seeing many Africans have is seeing African Americans with is, for example, someone wearing a skirt with kente cloth from Ghana while showing Yoruba tribal marks.

People are just throwing on whatever ‘African’ thing they see and say they’re embracing their roots without trying to really understand it. The ‘fashions’ from afropunk were a perfect example. You’ll see someone with Maasai jewelry with Wolof style attire yelling “culture” & when some people get called out on that, they accuse Africans of accusing them of appropriation. So we’re asking…fam, there’s no Maasai tribe in Senegal so which ‘African Culture’ is this?

3. Understand what it is you’re wearing and I personally won’t have an issue with it. Wearing it because it’s trendy & getting called out then accusing someone of accusing you of appropriation is pure BS.

Embrace your roots past clothing & fashion, if you’re going to wear something from an African culture, prepare to be asked about it and have an answer. Not because you’re African American and getting called out etc…but because you are now choosing to represent an entire culture of people. Whenever I wear anything from Kenya, I get questioned by people who are interested in learning about it. Same goes for anyone who chooses to embrace their roots in that form. I do the same whenever I see others, I’ll ask are you from ___ because I see you’re wearing ___“ & legit if I hear “no I just thought it was cool” I really get upset. So I can only imagine how someone from a particular culture would feel if they saw someone wearing something  from their culture in particular and not even knowing what it is they’re wearing. What you’re saying to that person is “your culture has no value to me past looking cool at the moment” & that is offensive, no debate.