Cultural appropriation

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Satinavian:

Or, to stay in Indian history, why does it matter that some Brit crouned herself empress of India but does not matter that some central Asian did pretty much the same when establishing the Mughal Saltanat ?

Who on earth is saying that doesn't matter?! Genghis Khan is frequently cited as one of the greatest mass murderers in history.

EDIT: I misread the initial post as referring to the Mongol Empire rather than the Mughal Empire. My mistake, apologies.

Satinavian:

Colonialism ended. And the global power distribution is far different from the time of the British empire. The UK are just some unimportant islands near Europe. India is the one Great Power in south Asia.

Do you believe that the influences of colonialism have all dissipated?

If so, that's remarkably quick. It would be utterly unheard of for the economic and cultural impact of centuries of colonialism to disappear in a couple of decades following its legal end.

Souplex:
Why and when did parts of the left become against cultural integration arguing that only certain races can do certain things?

In your imagination (most precisely, when you thought how to misrepresent them in your post)

When you care about the aesthetic more than the meaning, then there's something wrong with that.

Here is the quintessential example of Cultural Appropriation

Indonesians Dress Up As Nazis

They really don't have a message. They like the look. And this isn't a decade ago. This was last year. This was actually less than a year ago because they were asked about the Charlottesville rally. These people want to take the 'idea of Hitler', how he was able to lead so strongly, and remove him from his actual actions in the world. That is Cultural Appropriation.

Dreads aren't cultural appropriation because it's a style of hair that people 'invented' all through the world. Rap is simply spoken word poetry done to beats predominantly found in the African American culture. Martial Arts are ways to use your body in defense. Anyone locked in a cave for their entire lives could stumble onto these expressions of themselves. There's no appropriation there.

But taking from people's history, their lives and pain, and wearing it as a badge of 'it looks cool, doesn't it'. Yeah, that can go away.

ObsidianJones:
When you care about the aesthetic more than the meaning, then there's something wrong with that.

Here is the quintessential example of Cultural Appropriation

Indonesians Dress Up As Nazis

They really don't have a message. They like the look. And this isn't a decade ago. This was last year. This was actually less than a year ago because they were asked about the Charlottesville rally. These people want to take the 'idea of Hitler', how he was able to lead so strongly, and remove him from his actual actions in the world. That is Cultural Appropriation.

Dreads aren't cultural appropriation because it's a style of hair that people 'invented' all through the world. Rap is simply spoken word poetry done to beats predominantly found in the African American culture. Martial Arts are ways to use your body in defense. Anyone locked in a cave for their entire lives could stumble onto these expressions of themselves. There's no appropriation there.

But taking from people's history, their lives and pain, and wearing it as a badge of 'it looks cool, doesn't it'. Yeah, that can go away.

So anything less than black-face is okay? I can work with that. Listen to rap and grow dreads, just don't put on black makeup and go around acting stereo-typically 'black'.
But don't we just call that straight racism, or is it appropriation because its not race-wide thing, but a cultural? Like being German isn't a race, but Nazis were a German political movement, so appropriation. Rap is not a universally black thing, so anyone can enjoy it. That sorta thing?

Cultural appropriation is like lupus. Or entrapment. People have an idea of what it is, but that idea is usually inaccurate.

Non-native person wearing a feathered headdress because they think it looks cool? That's appropriation. Indian girl taking her non-Indian friends to get henna tattoos? No. Eating the food of another culture? No. Learning the language of another culture? Also no.

Silentpony:

So anything less than black-face is okay? I can work with that. Listen to rap and grow dreads, just don't put on black makeup and go around acting stereo-typically 'black'.
But don't we just call that straight racism, or is it appropriation because its not race-wide thing, but a cultural? Like being German isn't a race, but Nazis were a German political movement, so appropriation. Rap is not a universally black thing, so anyone can enjoy it. That sorta thing?

Cultural Appropriation is another one of bullshit trigger words created to make people sound sensible for outlandish and unnecessary knee jerk sensitivity.

The problem is, it got attached to legitimate problems. Like the Nazi thing.

And even with rap, it did get attached to some legitimate problems. I grew up in the Bronx. I had white neighbors. Did the cops look at them more favorably? Absolutely. But did they go through the same struggles, problems, and near jumpings in the ghetto? Fuck yes they did. So if Hip-Hop and Rap is of the Ghetto, then Tommy and his older brother (who I forget the name of) should be able to bump it without a care.

But here's where the legitimate problem comes in. I moved the the suburbs when I was twelve. And I saw people in Westchester County (once ranked in the top 50 of richest counties in America) who never wanted for anything in their lives... don the clothing of the rap stars and try to act like they are hard when they know they are going to get a BMW for their 16th birthday. I know that on the same streets, belonging to the same neighborhood, the cops would look at those guys with their baggy jeans, FUBU or Nautica shirts, and their backwards caps... and pass them by. But me? with just my baggy jeans? Stopped. Id checked. And whatever.

That's where this labeling stems from. That shit's unfair. And it gets people angry. And they can't claim its racism to those people who are dressing that way, so they have to yell something. Because those people who have to suffer that injustice of not being able to walk around like everyone else has legitimate rational anger towards the cops who will stop due to bias, and semi-rational/bordering on irrational hatred towards those people who can wear these things without and problems.

It's a slap in the face that these people who didn't suffer STILL don't have to suffer while taking on our mannerisms. In truth, it's not the fault of those people, but anger and hurt seldom breeds logic.

Gethsemani:

I don't think I understand your point about Coca-Cola and McDonald's. You seem to think that those small parts of American culture being common all over the world is a bad thing, which is fair enough I guess. What confuses me is that unlike other people framing cultural appropriation as a "dominant" culture stealing from a "subordinate" culture, you seem to take the reverse and frame it as one culture infecting and replacing another. Is the goal of standing against cultural appropriation to prevent Western nations from becoming infected with elements of outside cultures the way many cultures have been infected with Coke and McD's? I really doubt that's what you intended based on your opinions expressed elsewhere, but by lamenting the universality of a few unrepresentative bits of American culture in the context of this discussion I get the impression you are afraid other things from other cultures might also become widespread if we don't take efforts to stamp out certain kinds of cultural exchange. Again, I don't think this is what you meant so I'd hope you might be willing clarify why Coke and McD's being widespread is relevant to Cultural Appropriation.

As for my own opinion, I get it in regards to religious iconography being misused or disrespected such as with the classic case of Native American headdresses, but most of the time I find the claim of cultural appropriation to be nonsense and sometimes more racist than the inciting incident.

Xsjadoblayde:


"Hey, we're going to pretend your plights don't exist when not actively stamping you out throughout our entire history because it's simpler to avoid any potential of feeling responsible, or - God forbid - actual guilt, but we're going to totally take all the stuff we think looks neat for ourselves, that cool?

What do you mean it isn't?? Fucking Marxist sjw censorship snowflakes assholes! That shit's ours now. And no, your not getting any equal rights either."

But alright, I guess it is easier to ignore that the deeply ingrained systems of colonialism is still harming peoples when you focus on misinterpreting terms in favour of internet strawmen perpetuated by crazy people slapped with Tumblr labels.

Not only do they take it for themselves, they take CREDIT for it, profit from it and it is only "cool" now because some white social elitist used it publicly and made it cool. For far too long, many cultures could not even legally claim their own works, and even when they did, courts and people ignored their claims and used their works however they wished never giving credit or royalties where they otherwise would be due. They felt entitled to take what was not theirs as if they invented it themselves leaving those who it actually belongs to disappear into obscurity.

This picture explains it far better than words:
image

The white man takes the glory from the black mans work. Stolen songs, fortune and fame.

Though those were a black mans songs, no one cared about them unless a white man presents it.

Silent Protagonist:
I don't think I understand your point about Coca-Cola and McDonald's. You seem to think that those small parts of American culture being common all over the world is a bad thing, which is fair enough I guess. What confuses me is that unlike other people framing cultural appropriation as a "dominant" culture stealing from a "subordinate" culture, you seem to take the reverse and frame it as one culture infecting and replacing another. Is the goal of standing against cultural appropriation to prevent Western nations from becoming infected with elements of outside cultures the way many cultures have been infected with Coke and McD's? I really doubt that's what you intended based on your opinions expressed elsewhere, but by lamenting the universality of a few unrepresentative bits of American culture in the context of this discussion I get the impression you are afraid other things from other cultures might also become widespread if we don't take efforts to stamp out certain kinds of cultural exchange. Again, I don't think this is what you meant so I'd hope you might be willing clarify why Coke and McD's being widespread is relevant to Cultural Appropriation.

As for my own opinion, I get it in regards to religious iconography being misused or disrespected such as with the classic case of Native American headdresses, but most of the time I find the claim of cultural appropriation to be nonsense and sometimes more racist than the inciting incident.

I was probably not clear enough, so I'll clarify:
I don't think the ubiquity of McD or Coca Cola, or most other super large corporations, is inherently bad. It is also not entirely related to cultural appropriation, which you've seem to got the handle on, as much as it was an example for Satinavian to see that American culture is very dominant, I'd say hegemonic, globally today, since that was what he refuted. The point was that Coca-Cola, McD, Nike and Disney are pretty much everywhere (even Saddam-era Iraq created decorations for tivolis that were Disney characters), but China, Korea and Japan have nothing like that. What this means for cultural appropriation is that for all points and purposes, those of us living in the west are of the dominant culture, while people in the rest of the world are that 'subordinate' culture.

As for spreading other cultures, I'd love to see more of it, and I am fairly confident that Chinese culture will probably be getting a breakthrough in the next few decades if China continues its' ascension towards superpower status. I believe cultural exchange in general is good, but we must also acknowledge that some cultures hold more power and sway than others and that that will influence how those cultures interact.

Silvanus:
Who on earth is saying that doesn't matter?! Genghis Khan is frequently cited as one of the greatest mass murderers in history.

I did not actually talk about Genghis Khan here. He did not conquer India. While the Timurids might have been of his lineage, the birth of the Mughal empire is hardly related to the original Mongol realm or even the four major khaganates spawning from it.

Do you believe that the influences of colonialism have all dissipated?

If so, that's remarkably quick. It would be utterly unheard of for the economic and cultural impact of centuries of colonialism to disappear in a couple of decades following its legal end.

You could claim that colonialism itself lasted for centuries, but most colonies were hardly longer colonies than a hundred years and it is not unusual for countries to have been colonized only for decades at best. Which is also true for most nations that tried their hand at being colonial overlords. India itself was British less than a single century. And even if you include East India Company time it still doesn't manage two of them. And that is one of the long time colonies. In most cases it is just another episode of weakness/foreign rule in a very long list of similar experiences during the millenia, nothing special.

Gethsemani:
I was probably not clear enough, so I'll clarify:
I don't think the ubiquity of McD or Coca Cola, or most other super large corporations, is inherently bad. It is also not entirely related to cultural appropriation, which you've seem to got the handle on, as much as it was an example for Satinavian to see that American culture is very dominant, I'd say hegemonic, globally today, since that was what he refuted. The point was that Coca-Cola, McD, Nike and Disney are pretty much everywhere (even Saddam-era Iraq created decorations for tivolis that were Disney characters), but China, Korea and Japan have nothing like that. What this means for cultural appropriation is that for all points and purposes, those of us living in the west are of the dominant culture, while people in the rest of the world are that 'subordinate' culture.

The USA is pretty influential because it is a superpower and thus most nations pay attention to it or interact with it. It also helps that English is the new lingua franca which makes American culture more accessable.
The USA is not influential because of long gone colonial empires or because it is predominantly white.

But that the USA is influential does not make our culture in any way dominant. I don't live there and afaik you don't either. How does having Coca Cola in Iraq make Swedish culture more powerful or prevalent there ? It simply does not.

Satinavian:
Why should i feel responsibility or guilt about something people i have nothing to do did to other people i have nothing to do a century or more ago ?

Who is asking you to feel guilt or responsibility? Why would you think someone is blaming you when they criticise stuff neither you nor your culture have carried out?

I am struggling to think of a genuine example of cultural appropriation happening recently. A lot of people are talking about what WOULD be cultural appropriation but there's no actual articles or genuine examples of it.

A bunch of (American) bitches getting upset at a white girl for wearing a Chinese dress is such a nontroversey it's clear how it's not getting any political traction.

Agema:
Who is asking you to feel guilt or responsibility?

The person i quoted.

Xsjadoblayde:

"Hey, we're going to pretend your plights don't exist when not actively stamping you out throughout our entire history because it's simpler to avoid any potential of feeling responsible, or - God forbid - actual guilt, but we're going to totally take all the stuff we think looks neat for ourselves, that cool?

Satinavian:
The USA is pretty influential because it is a superpower and thus most nations pay attention to it or interact with it. It also helps that English is the new lingua franca which makes American culture more accessable.
The USA is not influential because of long gone colonial empires or because it is predominantly white.

But that the USA is influential does not make our culture in any way dominant. I don't live there and afaik you don't either. How does having Coca Cola in Iraq make Swedish culture more powerful or prevalent there ? It simply does not.

I am sure the people of Japan, the Philippines, Cuba, Guam, (American) Samoa and a bunch of other places feel differently about the USA's role as a colonial empire. Do I need remind you about the origin of the term "gunboat diplomacy" ("Hey Japan! Trade with the US or we open fire on your cities."), the US making the Philippines a protectorate by taking over from Spain, the ongoing occupation of Guam and Samoa and the fact that Cuba for a long time also was a protectorate of the USA? Or how about the Monroe Doctrine that in effect turned Central and South America into countries that needed US good-will to have any sort of foreign policy of their own and made it impossible for them to have close relations with other major nations?

We should never make the mistake of thinking that the USA is some chummy old buddy who's been all about ardent anti-colonialism. While the US didn't achieve the outright colonies or dominions of the European colonial powers, the USA certainly expanded its' influence across the world and forced countries to go along with the US. Just look at Chile and Iran and ask yourself what right the USA had to instigate bloody coups in those countries, or what right the USA had to invade places like Grenada, Iraq and Afghanistan?

The USA is influential because it has played a long game of securing international influence, on-going since at least the early 19th century. Hence it ties directly into the same vein as why colonial empires gained power, because they were able to project their dominance across the globe. The US just does it without occupying large swathes of land and talking about the White Man's Burden.

As for why the US dominance allows "the West" influence, it is not hard. The US has had close relations with Europe and Europe is still one of the most highly developed (if not the most highly developed in the case of Western Europe) places on Earth. For a lot of people outside of "the West", the idea of the West as a contingent thing is real, just as a lot of people in Europe tends to think of Asia, the Middle East or the USA as a contingent, monolithic entity and not a bunch of disparate states. Hence, with the image of Coca-Cola and McD, the average Chinese middle class person will also think of Ericsson, IKEA and BMW. Because those are considered status symbols of "the West". A west which, as I've said prior, China very much wants to emulate. Western culture (as in freedom, democracy, equality and high standards of living) is very much a thing, no matter how much you try to pretend that it isn't.

Gethsemani:
The point was that Coca-Cola, McD, Nike and Disney are pretty much everywhere (even Saddam-era Iraq created decorations for tivolis that were Disney characters), but China, Korea and Japan have nothing like that.

Japan used to dominate the consumer electronics market. The VHS was developed by JVC. The CD, DVD, and BluRay were developed by Sony and Philips. Then there's consoles and games, which requires no explanation. Also there's Hello Kitty, whatever that is.

I think I can boil this down pretty far.

The cultural appropriation side thinks that white people are enjoying aspects of cultures that are not their own, while the people whose culture that originally belongs to have a harder time enjoying those same things, resulting in a Feeling that something has been taken away from them.

The anti cultural appropriation side thinks, they understand this concept but it is stupid and doesn't matter, and your feelings are worth nothing. They ask about it to make sure there is nothing of actual substance they are overlooking.

The cultural appropriation side then explains, and the anti side says "yeah....So?

I'm pretty sure it all stems from something I have noticed over the years, a general perception people seem to have that if something good or enjoyable is happening for one person, but not another person, somehow the second person is harmed by the lack of goodness.

For instance if I ask my boss for a raise, and get it, I cannot tell anyone because they will see it as a slight against them that they did not also receive a raise. Despite the fact that nothing bad has actually happened for them, only something nice for me.

Is this resonating for anyone?

I don't like my name anymore:

Japan used to dominate the consumer electronics market. The VHS was developed by JVC. The CD, DVD, and BluRay were developed by Sony and Philips. Then there's consoles and games, which requires no explanation. Also there's Hello Kitty, whatever that is.

I know about VHS and home eletronics in general coming from Japan in the 70's and 80's, but how much of Japanese culture was brought along with that export? I mean, Sweden brought you the zipper and dynamite, but it didn't cause any widespread Swedenization of the world. Japan has had some limited success in spreading its' culture via manga and anime, but even that is mostly to very niche groups in the west.

Reasonable Atheist:
I think I can boil this down pretty far.

The cultural appropriation side thinks that white people are enjoying aspects of cultures that are not their own, while the people whose culture that originally belongs to have a harder time enjoying those same things, resulting in a Feeling that something has been taken away from them.

The anti cultural appropriation side thinks, they understand this concept but it is stupid and doesn't matter, and your feelings are worth nothing. They ask about it to make sure there is nothing of actual substance they are overlooking.

The cultural appropriation side then explains, and the anti side says "yeah....So?

I'm pretty sure it all stems from something I have noticed over the years, a general perception people seem to have that if something good or enjoyable is happening for one person, but not another person, somehow the second person is harmed by the lack of goodness.

For instance if I ask my boss for a raise, and get it, I cannot tell anyone because they will see it as a slight against them that they did not also receive a raise. Despite the fact that nothing bad has actually happened for them, only something nice for me.

Is this resonating for anyone?

More like people have a tendency to take non-white culture, water it down and present it as something flashy and trendy to white consumers, ignoring any and all depth, meaning and cultural context just so that white consumers can have something that's non-offensive and easily digestible.

It's not that the original culture have a "harder" time enjoying it, it's just that the people who adopt aspects of it have little respect for it and have a tendency to reduce it to the lowest common denominator. Like when Twilight took a real Native American tribe and flushed away their cultural history and struggles with oppression in favor of making them a bunch of shallow, eye candy werewolves. There's a reason Native Americans utterly despise those books.

erttheking:

Reasonable Atheist:
I think I can boil this down pretty far.

The cultural appropriation side thinks that white people are enjoying aspects of cultures that are not their own, while the people whose culture that originally belongs to have a harder time enjoying those same things, resulting in a Feeling that something has been taken away from them.

The anti cultural appropriation side thinks, they understand this concept but it is stupid and doesn't matter, and your feelings are worth nothing. They ask about it to make sure there is nothing of actual substance they are overlooking.

The cultural appropriation side then explains, and the anti side says "yeah....So?

I'm pretty sure it all stems from something I have noticed over the years, a general perception people seem to have that if something good or enjoyable is happening for one person, but not another person, somehow the second person is harmed by the lack of goodness.

For instance if I ask my boss for a raise, and get it, I cannot tell anyone because they will see it as a slight against them that they did not also receive a raise. Despite the fact that nothing bad has actually happened for them, only something nice for me.

Is this resonating for anyone?

More like people have a tendency to take non-white culture, water it down and present it as something flashy and trendy to white consumers, ignoring any and all depth, meaning and cultural context just so that white consumers can have something that's non-offensive and easily digestible.

It's not that the original culture have a "harder" time enjoying it, it's just that the people who adopt aspects of it have little respect for it and have a tendency to reduce it to the lowest common denominator. Like when Twilight took a real Native American tribe and flushed away their cultural history and struggles with oppression in favor of making them a bunch of shallow, eye candy werewolves. There's a reason Native Americans utterly despise those books.

except it happens to all cultures, and everyone joins in the revelry (not just whites)

Its just something that AMERICANS do. I mean, name white cultures that are not watered down as something flashy and trendy for common consumption?

Ryotknife:

erttheking:

Reasonable Atheist:
I think I can boil this down pretty far.

The cultural appropriation side thinks that white people are enjoying aspects of cultures that are not their own, while the people whose culture that originally belongs to have a harder time enjoying those same things, resulting in a Feeling that something has been taken away from them.

The anti cultural appropriation side thinks, they understand this concept but it is stupid and doesn't matter, and your feelings are worth nothing. They ask about it to make sure there is nothing of actual substance they are overlooking.

The cultural appropriation side then explains, and the anti side says "yeah....So?

I'm pretty sure it all stems from something I have noticed over the years, a general perception people seem to have that if something good or enjoyable is happening for one person, but not another person, somehow the second person is harmed by the lack of goodness.

For instance if I ask my boss for a raise, and get it, I cannot tell anyone because they will see it as a slight against them that they did not also receive a raise. Despite the fact that nothing bad has actually happened for them, only something nice for me.

Is this resonating for anyone?

More like people have a tendency to take non-white culture, water it down and present it as something flashy and trendy to white consumers, ignoring any and all depth, meaning and cultural context just so that white consumers can have something that's non-offensive and easily digestible.

It's not that the original culture have a "harder" time enjoying it, it's just that the people who adopt aspects of it have little respect for it and have a tendency to reduce it to the lowest common denominator. Like when Twilight took a real Native American tribe and flushed away their cultural history and struggles with oppression in favor of making them a bunch of shallow, eye candy werewolves. There's a reason Native Americans utterly despise those books.

except it happens to all cultures, and everyone joins in the revelry (not just whites)

Yeah, it's just that in an age of globalization "everyone does it" falls flat as an argument because it doesn't have nearly the same impact when less influential cultures do it. While there are shallow takes on white culture, a lot of white countries have enough influence and impact to where more legitimate forms of their culture can reach other countries. Not so much with non-white ones, outside of very niche groups.

Abomination:
I am struggling to think of a genuine example of cultural appropriation happening recently. A lot of people are talking about what WOULD be cultural appropriation but there's no actual articles or genuine examples of it.

A bunch of (American) bitches getting upset at a white girl for wearing a Chinese dress is such a nontroversey it's clear how it's not getting any political traction.

I think it was actually a dude who got mad at her, not some catty high school bitches all 'I can't believe she wore that dress!'
and if you ask me the girl missed a golden opportunity in replying 'So glad there's a man willing to step forward and tell me what I can and cannot wear'. It would have instantly changed the story from 'girl steals culture's dress' to 'Man tells woman she can't wear dress to prom'

It would have still been a nontroversey, but it would have been a little piece of karma.

erttheking:

Ryotknife:

erttheking:

More like people have a tendency to take non-white culture, water it down and present it as something flashy and trendy to white consumers, ignoring any and all depth, meaning and cultural context just so that white consumers can have something that's non-offensive and easily digestible.

It's not that the original culture have a "harder" time enjoying it, it's just that the people who adopt aspects of it have little respect for it and have a tendency to reduce it to the lowest common denominator. Like when Twilight took a real Native American tribe and flushed away their cultural history and struggles with oppression in favor of making them a bunch of shallow, eye candy werewolves. There's a reason Native Americans utterly despise those books.

except it happens to all cultures, and everyone joins in the revelry (not just whites)

Yeah, it's just that in an age of globalization "everyone does it" falls flat as an argument because it doesn't have nearly the same impact when less influential cultures do it.

which does not refute anything i said.

Which cultures are influential? which ones are not?

Is german culture influential? French? English? Irish? Scottish? All of those have been "watered down" for easy consumption.

About the only white culture i can think of that is not watered down is Amish, and they are hardly influential. The only reason theirs has not is because they are recluses and have formed separate societies.

While there are shallow takes on white culture, a lot of white countries have enough influence and impact to where more legitimate forms of their culture can reach other countries. Not so much with non-white ones, outside of very niche groups.

okay, this clears things up a bit. Its okay for it to happen so long as an "original" copy exists so to speak. With globalism though, nothing exists in a vacuum, as such it is unreasonable to assume any culture will remain unchanged over time.

Ryotknife:
Snip

First world countries in general have much bigger cultural and economic impacts on the world.

I never said anything about cultures staying unchanged. I said that other people borrow aspects of cultures from other societies and water it down and give no care for any of the depth or complexity it once had. Doubly so when the original has little to no way of actually reaching people who so happily enjoy it's bastardized, safe for mass consumption version.

erttheking:

Ryotknife:
Snip

First world countries in general have much bigger cultural and economic impacts on the world.

I never said anything about cultures staying unchanged. I said that other people borrow aspects of cultures from other societies and water it down and give no care for any of the depth or complexity it once had. Doubly so when the original has little to no way of actually reaching people who so happily enjoy it's bastardized, safe for mass consumption version.

even if the US never existed, that would still happen. What you are discussing is the byproduct of this age, of this technology. People want instant satisfication and stuff that is easily digested. It is the same for cultures and traditions as it is for news and religion. People getting their news off twitter and facebook and distilling a complex subject down to simple (often passive aggressive or intellectually dishonest) soundbites. People who are of X faith, but dont want to attend regular service or do any of the ceremonies.

Yes, first world countries have a bigger impact, much in the same way that those countries had a huge impact on the US for hundreds of years and to be honest im glad they did.

I think its great that im not limited by my genetics when it comes to experiencing traditions, cultures, or cuisine (thank god, i hate german cuisine). It seems like if some of these traditionalists had their way, everyone would be pigeonholed by their ancestry.

Cultural Appropriation is not a left/right issue. Just look at all the right-wing white men who fear cultural interbreeding.

Ryotknife:

even if the US never existed, that would still happen. What you are discussing is the byproduct of this age, of this technology. People want instant satisfication and stuff that is easily digested. It is the same for cultures and traditions as it is for news and religion. People getting their news off twitter and facebook and distilling a complex subject down to simple soundbites. People who are of X faith, but dont want to attend regular service or do any of the ceremonies.

Yes, first world countries have a bigger impact, much in the same way that those countries had a huge impact on the US for hundreds of years and to be honest im glad they did.

Yeah, you seem to be assuming that this didn't happen before the modern age, which it totally totally did. This isn't anything new that's a product of the age of the internet.

Ryotknife:

I think its great that im not limited by my genetics when it comes to experiencing traditions, cultures, or cuisine (thank god, i hate german cuisine). It seems like if some of these traditionalists had their way, everyone would be pigeonholed by their ancestry.

Please point out where I or anyone else said that no one should ever experience any form of another type of culture, because you're acting like I said that and I didn't. Avatar the Last Airbender was one of my favorite shows as a kid, and you know what it did? It had actual depth and understanding of the culture it was borrowing from. But I guess advocating for that is asking too much nowadays.

erttheking:

Ryotknife:

even if the US never existed, that would still happen. What you are discussing is the byproduct of this age, of this technology. People want instant satisfication and stuff that is easily digested. It is the same for cultures and traditions as it is for news and religion. People getting their news off twitter and facebook and distilling a complex subject down to simple soundbites. People who are of X faith, but dont want to attend regular service or do any of the ceremonies.

Yes, first world countries have a bigger impact, much in the same way that those countries had a huge impact on the US for hundreds of years and to be honest im glad they did.

Yeah, you seem to be assuming that this didn't happen before the modern age, which it totally totally did. This isn't anything new that's a product of the age of the internet.

Ryotknife:

I think its great that im not limited by my genetics when it comes to experiencing traditions, cultures, or cuisine (thank god, i hate german cuisine). It seems like if some of these traditionalists had their way, everyone would be pigeonholed by their ancestry.

Please point out where I or anyone else said that no one should ever experience any form of another type of culture, because you're acting like I said that and I didn't.

Please point out where i said that you said that no one should ever experience any form of another type of culture? That was just a personal opinion of mine, it was not even passive aggressive.

Avatar the Last Airbender was one of my favorite shows as a kid, and you know what it did? It had actual depth and understanding of the culture it was borrowing from. But I guess advocating for that is asking too much nowadays.

Well, that is your opinion. Everyone has different tastes. There are many people that LIKE the watered down for easy consumption cultures (at least implicitly). If they did not, it would not be a thing. Hell, that is tourism in a nutshell. I realize the last sentence you made may be just for snark, but yea asking for that is probably too much. Just like it is too much to ask for people to function without a smartphone. Hell, those have only been around for a decade.

Yeah, you seem to be assuming that this didn't happen before the modern age, which it totally totally did. This isn't anything new that's a product of the age of the internet.

No, its happened throughout human history, although nowhere near as fast and widespread as it is happening now. It used to take centuries, now its happening in decades.

Satinavian:
I did not actually talk about Genghis Khan here. He did not conquer India. While the Timurids might have been of his lineage, the birth of the Mughal empire is hardly related to the original Mongol realm or even the four major khaganates spawning from it.

Oops-- I misread the post, my mistake.

Satinavian:
You could claim that colonialism itself lasted for centuries, but most colonies were hardly longer colonies than a hundred years and it is not unusual for countries to have been colonized only for decades at best. Which is also true for most nations that tried their hand at being colonial overlords. India itself was British less than a single century. And even if you include East India Company time it still doesn't manage two of them. And that is one of the long time colonies. In most cases it is just another episode of weakness/foreign rule in a very long list of similar experiences during the millenia, nothing special.

You seem to be almost supporting my argument, here, in pointing out that many of these cultures experienced a "long list of similar experiences" such as foreign rule. What impact do you believe this has on a culture?

Even were we to draw a line and refer only to the most recent colonial rule, such as the British colonial rule in India, a hundred years still covers several generations. A shared experience of a single generation can have an incredible impact on a culture; an experience spanning multiple generations, beyond living memory and the living memory of parents, even more so.

This impact is not erased in mere years, or a couple of decades, particularly when the residual influences of that experience still exist.

Saelune:
Cultural Appropriation is not a left/right issue. Just look at all the right-wing white men who fear cultural interbreeding.

Isn't appropriation different than interbreeding though? One is taking from a culture that you don't belong to, the other is mixing two cultures to make a new third culture.

It mostly seems like a weird name for some important issues, like people using symbols from other cultures that can give offense when used wrongly. Somebody mentioned people dressing up like nazi's without caring about the context above or wearing militairy medals that you haven't earned. It might seem like a fun game of dressing up to you, but to some people it comes off as though you think genocide is ok, or as if you are pretending to be a war hero when you aren't.

I don't know why it's called appropriation though. Ussually the problems that fall under 'cultural appropriation' would be better rendered by something like 'insensitivity', 'racism', 'essentialism', 'orientalism' or various other names that are more to the point and don't awkwardly make a form of theft the problem when that rarely is quite the problem. Then again, blowing up such unfortunate semantics to the idea that people don't want anyone to use anything from another culture ever, seems like a strawman, or at best, like cherry picking idiots to prevent having to think about the more important issues involved.

Ryotknife:
Snip

The bit where you went "I think its great that im not limited by my genetics when it comes to experiencing traditions, cultures, or cuisine (thank god, i hate german cuisine). It seems like if some of these traditionalists had their way, everyone would be pigeonholed by their ancestry." I really don't know how else to interpret "these traditionalists" aside from people who criticize cultural appropriation. I still don't.

Saying "Well people like it" isn't really a defense of something. You're not defending the merits of it, you're just claiming its popular, as if being popular is a virtue. It isn't. Also, you think people not watering down other cultures and not utilizing the equipment that many people need to work and stay connected with employees, family and school is comparable? And that not watering down culture is too much for people to handle? Exactly how low of an opinion do you have of people? Because I have a pretty low opinion of people and even I think you need to cut them some slack. I mean, your "defense" of this, can basically be boiled down to "People like it and people are dumb." I know you didn't say they're dumb, but again, I have a hard time seeing how else to take that. And you can be a tourist without being a douche.

I don't know about it happening faster now, the Romans had it boiled down to an art form, and were a lot more brutal and efficient about it.

Pseudonym:
It mostly seems like a weird name for some important issues, like people using symbols from other cultures that can give offense when used wrongly. Somebody mentioned people dressing up like nazi's without caring about the context above or wearing militairy medals that you haven't earned. It might seem like a fun game of dressing up to you, but to some people it comes off as though you think genocide is ok, or as if you are pretending to be a war hero when you aren't.

I don't know why it's called appropriation though. Ussually the problems that fall under 'cultural appropriation' would be better rendered by something like 'insensitivity', 'racism', 'essentialism', 'orientalism' or various other names that are more to the point and don't awkwardly make a form of theft the problem when that rarely is quite the problem. Then again, blowing up such unfortunate semantics to the idea that people don't want anyone to use anything from another culture ever, seems like a strawman, or at best, like cherry picking idiots to prevent having to think about the more important issues involved.

Ah, you're exploring the idea of broad stroke language. I agree, the terminology needs more focus to ensure less outliers are included, watering down the actual impact of the issue.

The problem already faced is some girl wearing a Chinese dress to prom is considered the same thing as someone selling Auschwitz prisoner uniforms as Halloween costumes.

Cultural appropriation
or
What capitalism does to culture

I see an item related to some culture. I take it, copy it, change it (or not), market it to a larger audience and keep the profit for myself because in capitalism we reward the last person in the chain of production by far the most (or in this case, exclusively). The objects produced by the art and creativity of your culture? They are now, shorn of their context, recognizable as cheap replica mass-market consumer goods for people feeling like they want a touch of "the exotic". And I, humble imitator of your culture, get all the profit.

erttheking:
Also, you think people not watering down other cultures and not utilizing the equipment that many people need to work and stay connected with employees, family and school is comparable? And that not watering down culture is too much for people to handle? Exactly how low of an opinion do you have of people? Because I have a pretty low opinion of people and even I think you need to cut them some slack. I mean, your "defense" of this, can basically be boiled down to "People like it and people are dumb." I know you didn't say they're dumb, but again, I have a hard time seeing how else to take that. And you can be a tourist without being a douche.

Well, honestly, people are dumb.

There are plenty of valid arguments against what was said, but I wouldn't count this as one such.

Satinavian:
Kinda have a problem with this whole subordinate and dominent culture thing. That might make some sense for several subcultures in the same nation when one of them fills all the positions of power. But i don't think this can apply cross border if you don't have puppet regimes.

Do you not?

We still live in a deeply unequal world. A materially unequal world. Overwhelmingly, the richest and most powerful countries in the world (barring those with exceptional natural resources or strong ties to the USA) are:

* European countries
* European settler societies (that is to say, colonies in which a significant white population settled and did not integrate culturally or ethnically with the indigenous people).

We do still live in a world in which there is a globally hegemonic culture and a globally hegemonic race. That aspect of colonialism never went away. The nice countries are overwhelmingly the countries where white people live, the "shithole countries" are overwhelmingly those where non-white people live. The closer one is culturally and politically to Europe, the nicer your life is likely to be.

Satinavian:
Ask any Chinese, Japanese or Korean if they really think that their own culture is actually inferior to western ones.

In the 19th century, China was literally carved up like a pie by colonial empires.

The Republic of Korea was an American puppet state for decades after world war 2.

Japan was one of the few countries outside of Europe itself to adopt the European model of colonialism, a feat achieved by decades of aggressive cultural and economic Westernization.

Today, all of these countries are incredibly Westernized and exist in tension between preserving indigenous traditions and adapting to a modern world in which "Western" culture is clearly hegemonic. We do not need to ask people in these countries what culture they "prefer", it's not like they have a choice, and it's not like their choice matters.

Satinavian:
So unequality existing transforms cultural exchange into that cultural appropriation ?

In very, very simple terms. Yes.

When two cultures are not on an equal footing, it becomes very difficult to have a genuine exchange between them which does not simply reinforce the subordination of one culture to another.

Satinavian:
If so, i don't see why the very same thing is suddenly bad. Also still can't see why China, the second most powerful nation in the world gets lumped into subordinate cultures

North Korea is, on paper, one of the "most powerful nations in the world".

Consider what you mean when you say power.

Satinavian:
Colonialism ended. And the global power distribution is far different from the time of the British empire. The UK are just some unimportant islands near Europe.

The UK has one of the largest economies, relative to the size of its population, in the entire world. It is a global centre of science and culture and enjoys one of the best standards of living on the planet.

Satinavian:
India is the one Great Power in south Asia.

India is a country whose entire economy is built around serving the needs of more developed economies, like the UK. It's a country where much of the population lives in crippling poverty, where many people are barely educated and where the only hope of any kind of international recognition for intellectual or cultural achievements is to move to a country like the UK (if they will let you in, which they probably won't).

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