Katy Perry (Sorta) Addresses Cultural Appropriation Critiques

Posted By Jenn

DeRay McKesson (left) and Katy Perry (right) recording an episode of McKesson’s podcast. (Photo credit: Katy Perry livestream / screen grab from YouTube video posted by Kiwi in Munich)

In the latest episode of DeRay McKesson’s podcast, “Pod Save the People” (Episode 8:  “When You Have to Face Yourself”), McKesson interviews singer Katy Perry. During the conversation, Perry and McKesson discuss many topics, including the subject of cultural appropriation.

Perry has been heavily criticized — including by this blog — for multiple incidents of racial insensitivity and cultural appropriation, including at the 2013 AMA Music Awards when Perry dressed as a geisha in an Orientalist staging of her song “Unconditionally” (video after the jump). Perry was also accused of racism and appropriating black hair for her music video, “This Is How We Do“, wherein the singer was shown wearing cornrows and eating watermelon.

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Have They Run Out of White Tears Yet?

Posted By Jenn

Calvin Trillin
Calvin Trillin

Have they run out of White tears yet?
Racism, after all, we can’t as easily forget.

Days ago, Calvin Trillin penned a foolish ode
to Orientalism, chinoiserie, and General Tso’s.
Trillin appropriated China’s provincial diversity,
and re-processed it into no more than a foodie’s troublesome adversity.
Twenty eight lines of witless, badly written drivel,
to lament that China is not so conveniently artificial
as orange sauce basted fried chicken bits,
or stir-fried noodle counterfeits,
or tasteless envelopes for pseudo-Confucian tidbits,
or any mix of cream cheese and crab could possibly transmit.

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Academy Issues Weak Sauce Apology for Anti-Asian Jokes

Posted By Jenn

Chris Rock introduces three young Asian/Asian American children at Oscars 2016. (Photo credit: Rex)
Chris Rock introduces three young Asian/Asian American children at Oscars 2016. (Photo credit: Rex)

I’m going to create a new Tumblr: Weak Sauce Apologies For Racism.

Initial entries would include Emma Stone’s “my eyes have been opened” apology for appearing as an Asian American woman in Cameron Crowe’s Aloha; James Bond writer Anthony Horowitz’s 140-character mea culpa for calling Idris Elba “too street” to play his titular character; and Mark Wahlberg’s request to be pardoned for an anti-Asian hate crime assault.

We can also add another one to the list. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences issued a weak sauce, two sentence apology today, nearly three weeks after it aired a skit during the Oscars that invoked anti-Asian “model minority” and “child labour” stereotypes while exploiting three Asian American children as racial props.

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