Thursday, February 23, 2006

Cultural appropriation...or something like it.

Every year in my local shopping center they have "Western Days!" How or why this began I do not know, but it is becoming more and more elaborate each year. All around th shopping center there are ornate displays set up to show different aspects of American culture back in the days of the "Old Wild West". The results are both amusing and terrifying. The first year I saw the display my eyes nearly popped out of my head and I chipped a tooth when my jaw hit the floor.


In the chuckwagon display we see a cowboy relaxing by his campfire while a calf, that he has clearly just lassoed, smiles happily nearby.

Even more exciting, just down the way at the Tipi display, complete with a woman painted dark brown and wearing a pocahontas wig made of black yarn, children can learn to make "native" jewelery out of leather straps and feathers.

And let us not forget George Washington...


Texas...

And of course...





Cultural appropriation: The adoption of some specific elements of one culture by a different cultural group. The term implies the theft of culture, without respect to its history and an ignorance of underlying cultural meaning. It can include the introduction of forms of dress or personal adornment, music and art, religion, language, or behavior. These elements are typically imported into the existing culture, and may have wildly different meanings or lack the subtleties of their original cultural context.

5 comments:

Kim said...

Yehaw and OMG!

epiphany7 said...

oh. my. g-d.

should i laugh? or just be like "wtf?" for now i'll do both :)

Jul said...

Holy shit, that calf!

Cree A. said...

epiphany took the words out of my mouth. How can I otherwise express my shock and dismay? It's, ... so strange.

zs said...

Wait, where is this? Because I am insanely drawn to it and my see it in person.