Adele Accused of Cultural Appropriation After Bantu Knot Bikini Pic

Just weeks after stunning the world with her 100 pound weight loss, Adele has run into trouble.

Wearing her hair in bantu knots, she is accused of cultural appropriation.

Celebrities might not be impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as much as the rest of us, but they’re still feeling the weirdness of 2020.

“Happy what would be Notting Hill Carnival my beloved London,” Adele captioned a new photo on Instagram.

Lamenting that the carnival was of course not happening as usual, she also shared this photo.

Now, Adele is seen here wearing a Jamaican flag bikini top.

She is also wearing bantu knots — a way of styling the natural hair of Black women.

While there is no question that she is making an effort to celebrate an occassion despite the pandemic … it’s not going over well.

Okay, so this photo was a tribute to the Notting Hill Carnival.

This is an event that celebrates Caribbean and Black culture in the UK.

The carnival event was celebrated virtually this year, for obvious COVID-19 reasons.

Okay, so first up, what are Bantu knots?

They are a traditional hairstyle for Black women, involving sectioning the hair with square or triangular parts.

The hair is then fastened into tight buns or knots on top of the head. These can be made from loose natural hair or from dreadlocks.

As you can imagine, Adele was quickly accused of cultural appropriation.

As a follower’s comment explains: “Black women are discriminated against for wearing cultural hairstyles like bantu knots and locs.”

“But white people are not,” the comment continues, “and that’s not fair and that’s why people are pissed off.”

“Dear white people,” another commenter writes, “please just be yourselves and stop it for good with cultural appropriation.”

“Adele,” the comment reads, “the bantu knots were unnecessary. The Jamaican flag bikini top was unnecessary.”

“Please just stop it,” the commenter concludes.

Of course, others came to Adele’s defense, with one writing: “WE LOVE SEEING OUR FLAG EVERYWHERE!!!!”

“This made me smile,” one wrote. “It shows the impact my little island has on the whole world. How influential we truly are.”

Another suggested: “This is cultural appreciation, not appropriation.”

This is a deeply complicated topic, and just because two Jamaicans might disagree does not mean that we, as white people, can simply pick the argument that we most support.

Often, there is a discrepency on these topics between people who live in their ancestral homelands and those who live in the US or UK.

Someone living in Jamaica would have less exposure to racist inequalities faced by a Jamaican living in the US or UK, and thus they might not see any harm.

As an earlier comment explained, white celebrities receive praise for appropriating hairstyles and aesthetics from women of color.

In turn, those women of color might be turned down for everyday jobs for wearing their hair in any of the hairstyles that naturally work for their hair.

The celebrities appropriating their styles didn’t create white supremacist beauty standards, but they do benefit — which is why marginalized communities would like for them to stop.

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