Mattel accused of cultural appropriation over day of the lifeless Barbie


Mattel has launched its newest Barbie: a ‘Day of the Lifeless’ doll full with a flowery costume and a cranium sample painted on her face.

Day of the Lifeless is a Mexican vacation celebrated in Mexico and by folks of Mexican heritage worldwide. Through the day, folks says prayers and keep in mind family and friends who’ve died, and lots of select to put on costumes which may embody skulls, related to loss of life, and flowers, a preferred motif in conventional Mexican costume.

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The Dia de Muertos Barbie (the phrase is Spanish for ‘day of the lifeless’) was launched yesterday and made obtainable for $75 (£60) on the US Mattel web site.

Nonetheless, the product is at the moment offered out as a consequence of excessive demand.

READ MORE: Dior accused of cultural appropriation for Johnny Depp campaign

Whereas the doll was clearly fashionable, some persons are calling cultural appropriation.

The sold-out Day of the Lifeless Barbie. [Photo: Mattel]

Cultural appropriation is outlined by the Oxford English Dictionary as: “A time period used to explain the taking up of artistic or inventive types, themes, or practices by one cultural group from one other. It is generally used to explain Western appropriations of non‐Western or non‐white types, and carries connotations of exploitation and dominance.”

Twitter customers referred to as the doll “a foul joke” and “cultural appropriation at its worst”, criticising Mattel for making the most of the Mexican competition.

Not everybody has an issue with the doll, nonetheless.

Some Twitter customers have as a substitute understood the idea as a celebration relatively than an appropriation.

An analogous debate surrounding Rihanna’s Harper’s Bazaar China cowl in July this yr.

The singer and entrepreneur was photographed for the publication’s August 2019 version by Chinese language photographer Chen Man sporting conventional Chinese language costume, make-up and a coiffure full with mini followers.

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However followers claimed the truth that Rihanna posed on a Chinese language publication styled by folks of its tradition means she didn’t, in reality, applicable the tradition – however as a substitute the quilt was an instance of “cultural appreciation”.

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