Rue Tells Us About Cultural Appropriation

I wanted to take a moment to share this video on cultural appropriation that Amandla Stenberg (Rue, of District 8) made a few months ago:

“Cultural appropriation occurs,” she says, “when the appropriator is not aware of the deep significance of the culture they are partaking in.” She calls out Macklemore and Iggy Azalea for taking inspo from black culture and building their careers on rap, but then not showing support for real black culture, primarily in regards to present day social issues that have taken the country by storm.

These two white hip hop artists have a great influence over American pop culture right now, but have yet to step up and use that influence to show their support and shed light on the social issues that involve the culture they adopted in their musical careers. Stenberg also gives a pretty solid breakdown of the rise of black culture influences in pop culture in recent years, primarily in regards to white artists.

Artists who take inspiration from cultures other than their own should take it upon themselves to show respect for that culture, through the good and the bad. American society is a multicultural one, and I love that young people like Stenberg are recognizing this, the implications that comes along with it and speaking up.

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