The Torch

Stop Endorsing Kim K’s Cultural Appropriation

Madelyn Starks, Staff Writer

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Last week, Kim Kardashian posted a snapchat to show off her new braided hairstyle. In the snapchat, she referred to the braids as “Bo Derek Braids,” in reference to Bo Derek’s beach hairstyle in the movie, “10.”

It’s understandable if Kim got her inspiration from Derek for the hairstyle, however, white women constantly publicize fashion trends without giving credit where credit is due.

The individual and beaded cornrows are called Fulani braids from the Fulani tribe of Sahel and West Africa. Braids represent a long history of culture and heritage, not just for African tribes but for black and African American people living in this country as well.

There is a good chance Kim knows this and if she didn’t she most definitely has the monetary means to research it and educate herself.

In season 12 of “Keeping Up with the Kardashians,” Kim actually went to a black hairstylist to learn more about how she can maintain her daughter’s hair and the history behind black hair culture.

Based off this event, she doesn’t have any excuse to act uninformed. Black women have been fired, bullied and stereotyped for wearing Fulani braids and it’s insulting when someone as famous as Kim gives credit to a white person for the style.

Kim knows she is appropriating a culture. However, she refuses to take responsibility for her wrongdoing.

She must know that reactions from black Twitter (a virtual community within the app of black people who discuss specific topics relating to the black community) make her money and keep her relevant.

Kris Jenner has built an empire off of her daughters and it’s because they are constantly causing a media frenzy from their posts on social media. Kylie Jenner herself stated in her E! hit show, “Life of Kylie,” that she pays no money to market her makeup brand. All her marketing is based off of posts from social media.

Black Twitter needs to stop giving Kim Kardashian and the rest of the Kardashian/Jenner family free promo, especially since Kim knows that her controversial acts will become a trending topic.

In the last couple of months, making racist or controversial campaigns on social media seems to be the hot marketing trend for companies and brands.

From H&M to Wycon Cosmetics, brands know that attention from black Twitter increases market sales and keeps them in recent media.

Do you would think it was just a coincidence that, the day after her hair controversy on Jan. 31, Kim’s Kimoji fragrance and the Yeezy Season 6 campaign were introduced?

Kim was also accused of blackface when marketing her contour cream sticks last summer. She uses controversy as a marketing tool to up her product sales.  

Based off this controversy, this is the last time I am giving Kim the attention she’s asking for. I’ve caught on to her marketing tactics and at this point, she has become boring and predictable.

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The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University
Stop Endorsing Kim K’s Cultural Appropriation