Media tagged Race & Ethnicity

I’m Latino, But I’m Not…

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“I’m Latino, But I’m Not…” is a BuzzFeed video that addresses stereotypes about Latinos and Latinas by showing a diverse range of American Latino/a young adults talking about Latino/a identity and stereotypes. The first part of the video shows the people finishing the statement, “I’m Latino/a, but I’m not...,” and the second part shows them answering the question, “In addition to being Latino, what are you?” In the final section of the video, they talk about what it was like growing up in a Latino household. For example, in the first segment, one woman says, “I’m Latina, but I’m not Mexican,” and another says, “I’m Latina, but I’m not spicy.” One man says, “I’m Latino, but I’m not a drug dealer,” and another says, “I’m Latino, but I’m not stealing your jobs.” In the second part of the video, they make statements such as, “I’m Latina and I have a masters degree,” “I’m Latina and I read comic books,” “I’m Latino and I’m a geek,” and “I’m Latino and I’m an American.” In the final section, they talk about growing up Latino/Latina, including the cultures, music, food, and rituals of their families, and Latino/Latina and American identity.

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“I’m Latino. I’m Hispanic. And they’re different, so I drew a comic to explain.”

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Above is an excerpt from "You Say Latino," a comic artist Terry Blas created to define and talk about common confusion around the identity terms “Latino” and “Hispanic.” Emphasizing that the terms are not the same, and therefore not to be used interchangeably, he uses his personal experiences growing up in what he calls a bicultural household (his father is from Utah in the U.S., and his mother is from Ameca Meca, Mexico), and traveling in different parts of the U.S. and Mexico. He explains that “Latino” is about geography and being from Latin America, whereas “Hispanic” is about language, and being from a country whose primary language is Spanish. He uses being from Brazil, a Latin American country whose main language is Portuguese, and Spain, not a Latin American country, but whose main language is Spanish, as examples illustrating how the Latino and Hispanic identity terms describe different things. The comic ends with a reference to a young Terry understanding the difference between Latino and Hispanic, but wanting to know the difference between the terms “queer” and “gay.”

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I’m Muslim, But I’m Not…

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“I’m Muslim, But I’m Not...” is a BuzzFeed video that addresses stereotypes about Muslims by showing a diverse range of young adult Muslims talking about different aspects of their religious, racial, ethnic, national, and gender identities. The video has two parts, where respondents are shown finishing the sentence “I’m Muslim, but I’m not…” in the first part, and “I’m Muslim, and…” in the second. In the first section, the people in the video state their identities and respond to stereotypes. For example, a hijab-wearing woman states that she is Muslim but is not forced to wear the headscarf, and another woman says that she is Muslim even though she does not wear a hijab. A White man says he is Muslim but does not get stopped at the airport because his name is Tom and he is White, and an Asian man says he is Muslim but not Arab. A Black woman says she is Muslim but she is not an immigrant, and does not hate America. Another woman says she is Muslim, but not homophobic, and another says that she is Muslim, but you can be whatever you want to be. In the second half of the video, the respondents are finishing the sentence, “I’m Muslim, and…” and are shown saying things like, “I’m Muslim, and I’m a feminist,” or “I’m Muslim, and I love listening to rap music,” “I’m Muslim, and I’m descended from pilgrims on the Mayflower,” and “I’m Muslim, and my religion teaches me to love everyone.”

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In fashion, cultural appropriation is either very wrong or very right

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This 2015 video from Quartz challenges the idea that cultural appropriation is always negative, with a particular focus on the fashion industry. It features Oskar Metsavaht, a Brazilian fashion designer, who works with the indigenous Ashaninka tribe on a “co-branded collaboration.” The video begins by asking if this is an inspired or exploitative practice, reviewing the various ways cultural appropriation has entered discourse about popular culture. It then argues that Metsavaht offers a positive model for cultural appropriation as an “artist” as opposed to a “cultural tourist.” Metsavaht says the tribe gives him inspiration for his designs, and in exchange he tries to distribute their message regarding environmental concerns as well as royalties.

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Is that Snapchat filter racist?

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Snapchat, the social media messaging app, offers filters that users can overlay on top of their own photos, to alter their appearance. While many of these filters are marketed as humorous, several have been accused of being culturally insensitive and racist. On April 20, 2016, a day also known as ‘420,’ a number associated with marijuana use, Snapchat offered a one-day Bob Marley filter. The filter made users’ skin darker, gave them dreadlocks, and a Bob Marley style cap. A number of users complained that the filter was in effect ‘digital blackface’ and insulting as it trivialized Marley as a ‘stoner.’ Snapchat defended the filter saying it was done as a tribute to Bob Marley’s music with the permission of his estate. Just a few months later in August 2016, Snapchat released another filter that gave users slit eyes and contorted facial features. This filter was quickly accused of digital yellowface. After many complained, Snapchat removed the filter, which it said was ‘anime-inspired.’ Snapchat has also been criticized for its ‘beauty’ filter which makes eyes bigger, but noses and faces slimmer. Many say it reinforces Western standards of beauty.

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