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Culture Vultures

Cultural Appropriation

article Coachella Attendee Apologizes for Culturally Appropriating a Native American Headdress (4/27/2017)
(California) -- Outside of being the pinnacle of festival season and one of the determining factors for summer style trends, Coachella looks have notoriously been...
article BLOG: Missing The Target: Target & BaubleBar’s #StealingNativeCulture Partnership (4/27/2017)
(USA) -- About a month ago, I wrote a Dear Torrid Letter about Torrid ripping off Navajo culture by selling a knock-off of the iconic Navajo Squash Blossom Necklace.
article Members of Native American Tribes Say Oregon Country Fair's "Story Pole" Is An Abomination (4/26/2017)
(Oregon) -- A wood-carved pole at the Oregon Country Fair is receiving pushback from members of Native American tribes. The "story pole" has been in the works...
article Tanya Tagaq pushes U.S. band Eskimeaux to change its name (4/18/2017)
(Canada) -- Inuit throat singer Tanya Tagaq has convinced Brooklyn indie band Eskimeaux to swap out its name for one deemed more culturally sensitive. The Polaris Prize-...
article 'No regard for the violent history of indigenous people': Brooklyn Beckham accused of 'disrespect' over 'meaningless' Native American tattoo (4/4/2017)
(UK) -- Brooklyn Beckham has come under fire over his 'disrespectful' first tattoo. The forearm inking, which directly mimics his father David's, is an...
article American Tattoo Like His Dad’s, Comes Under Immediate Fire (4/3/2017)
(USA) -- On Sunday, Brooklyn Beckham got a new tattoo on his forearm. A day later, he’s fending off charges of cultural appropriation from Instagram users offended...
article BLOG: Valentino didn’t learn anything. (3/23/2017)
(Rhode Island) -- A couple days ago I went to a TJ Maxx in Massachusetts, and my sister and I were oo-ing and ahh-ing over some gorgeous studded Valentino heels. I...
article BLOG: 10 Reasons Why Joseph Boyden is a Problem and Should Go Away (3/7/2017)
(Canada) -- If you’re reading this, you’re probably already well aware of the walking controversy that is Joseph Boyden. At times it might seem strenuous to...
article Joseph Boyden: writers must be 'careful' on 'somebody else's turf' (3/6/2017)
(Canada) -- Acclaimed novelist Joseph Boyden, who has been dogged by controversy in recent months over his heritage and allegations that one of his short stories has...
article Māori-themed online game removed by Czech firm after NZ protests over intellectual property (2/15/2017)
(New Zealand) -- A Māori-themed online gambling game has been withdrawn by its Czech creators after protests that it breached Māori intellectual property. The game,...
article The Violence of Cultural Appropriation (2/8/2017)
(New York) -- Let’s talk about cultural appropriation and the art world, and let’s do it without abstraction or recourse to the symbolic. I want to turn...
article Coppola’s creative take on Native American cooking (1/20/2017)
(California) -- Oh, what a fuss over fry bread. Poor Werowocomoco, that nice little cafe at Francis Ford Coppola’s new Virginia Dare Winery in Geyserville. Even...
article Interview with a dreamcatcher maker (1/20/2017)
(California) -- Before heading out of O.B. to a gem show in Arizona, Christian Fischer explained how he became a fabricator of dreamcatchers.
article Against a Feathered Headdress: A Tale of Two Performance Festivals and Native American Voices (1/17/2017)
(New York) -- Two simultaneous performance events on January 8 revealed the gulf that still exists between certain New York art institutions in their approach to genuine...
article Nude Artist Performs in Headdress; MoMA Apologizes, Creates Native Program (1/12/2017)
(New York) -- New York City’s Museum of Modern Art has apologized to the Native American community after attendees at a performance on January 8 were shocked and...
article Minneapolis artist Rosy Simas protests nude performer wearing 'fake headdress' (1/6/2017)
(Minnesota) -- Local choreographer Rosy Simas saw a tweet congratulating New York’s American Realness Festival curator Thomas Benjamin Snapp Pryor for booking a...
article Is Germany's 'Winnetou' reviving old Hollywood stereotypes? (12/22/2016)
(Germany) -- None of the Native Americans in the film are played by Native Americans, and Winnetou speaks the wrong language. That may not be controversial in Germany,...
article J.K. Rowling criticized for culturally appropriating Native American culture in history of magic series (12/12/2016)
(USA) -- J.K. Rowling, acclaimed author of the Harry Potter series, created a multi-part background series on her website, Pottermore, detailing the history of magic in...
article Native American costumes pulled from parade (12/4/2016)
(New Zealand) -- Up to 100,000 people attended the parade down Riccarton Road, lining the streets to watch the colourful floats and cultural demonstrations.
article Urban Outfitters settles with Navajo Nation after illegally using tribe's name (11/19/2016)
(California) -- Urban Outfitters reached a settlement with the Navajo Nation after illegally using the tribe’s name for a collection that included “Navajo...
article $89 TeePee Now on Sale at Target (11/19/2016)
(USA) -- Just in time for Native appropriation for Thanksgiving and Christmas, Target is offering a gray and white “Southwestern Teepee” (as described on the...
article Navajo Nation settles dispute over sale of unauthorized 'Navajo' products (11/17/2016)
(Arizona) -- The Navajo Nation has reached a settlement with a major fashion retailer that sold "Navajo" products without the tribe's authorization. The...
article Film Director Francis Coppola Opens Native American-Inspired Restaurant (11/15/2016)
(California) -- American film director Francis Coppola unveiled his new restaurant, Werowocomoco, located in the Virginia Dare Winery in Geyserville, California....
article Francis Ford Coppola Assailed for ‘Cultural Appropriation’ at Native American Restaurant (11/5/2016)
(California) -- “Godfather” director Francis Ford Coppola’s new California restaurant doesn’t open until Saturday, but it’s already facing...
article Celeb Halloween Costumes Lend Insult to Injury for Native Americans (11/1/2016)
(California) -- It seems like every Halloween one minor celebrity causes a social media kerfuffle. Last year, it was dancer and actress Julianne Hough unwisely choosing...
article Horrifying racists mock Native American protesters with #NoDAPL Halloween costumes (11/1/2016)
(USA) -- While some are using Halloween as an opportunity to make people laugh or pique the interest of a partner, some are using the opportunity to hurl racist insults...
article School's Trail of Tears Banner Apology Marred as Native, Slave, Mexican, Asian Pics Surface (11/1/2016)
(Ohio) -- In the wake of a “Trail of Tears” banner McClain High School cheerleaders displayed during a football game Friday October 28th against the...
article NoDAPL Water Protector Halloween Costumes Hit Social Media (10/31/2016)
(Virginia) -- In the midst of the struggles faced by Native people on the frontlines of NoDAPL, some individuals have taken to social media, posting pictures of...
article Hilary Duff And Boyfriend Offend With Racist Pilgrim And Native American Costumes (10/30/2016)
(Hollywood) -- When it comes to former child stars, they either leave Hollywood as a hero or stick around long enough to become problematic.So goes the story of Hilary...
article Francis Ford Coppola unveils new restaurant in Sonoma County (10/26/2016)
(California) -- Francis Ford Coppola announced Monday that he will locate his new restaurant at the Virginia Dare Winery in Geyserville, the acclaimed director’s...
article Regina activists place warning labels on Indigenous Halloween costumes (10/17/2016)
(Saskatchewan) -- Halloween costumes depicting Indigenous women and girls in costume at a Regina store had warning labels thanks to some local activists. Spirit...
article 'Stereotypes are offensive' expert says of 'Native American' costume (10/12/2016)
(Saskatoon) -- A Saskatoon Halloween store is under fire for selling an Indigenous theme costume, but so too is the young educator and activist who first raised the...
article Halloween store owner says he never meant to offer 'Native American' costume for sale (10/12/2016)
(Saskatoon) -- The owner of Spirit Halloween says the ‘Native American’ costume that has been criticized by a Saskatoon activist was not meant to be on...
article Why You Should Say ‘No’ To Indian Costumes For Halloween (10/11/2016)
(USA) -- You see that cute little Indian costume for sale at a big-box retailer near you. It even has the two pretty black braids and a faux-leather dress. Baby girl...
article Activist says she was escorted out of Halloween shop for calling out 'Native American' costume (10/10/2016)
(Saskatoon) -- A high-profile student and activist in Saskatoon says she was kicked out of a pop-up Halloween shop for calling out an offensive costume on sale in the...
article Disney pulls 'Moana' costumes for children amid cultural appropriation uproar (9/22/2016)
(California) -- Disney is pulling from sale a number of children’s items tied to its upcoming release “Moana” amid controversy over whether they are...
article 'Reservation Royalty,' 'Indian Princess' Halloween costumes hit Winnipeg shelves (9/21/2016)
(Canada) -- "Reservation Royalty," "Indian Princess" and "Indian Warrior" Halloween costumes being sold in a Winnipeg store are offensive,...
article Gin takes it on the chin as Inuit complain of images used in sales pitch (9/16/2016)
(Canada) -- An Inuk journalist originally from North West River says a brand of gin is guilty of cultural appropriation, and even though the company offered up an...
article Native American tribe predicts comet will destroy Earth ‘in the near future’… and so far their predictions have been terrifying accurate (9/16/2016)
(USA) -- A NATIVE American tribe with a track record of predictions coming true has claimed a comet will destroy Earth “in the near future”. The Hopi tribe...
article Native American with a twist as YUMA launches 2017 designs (9/13/2016)
(Trinidad and Tobago) -- YUMA, one of Trinidad and Tobago’s large costume bands, is going Native American with a touch of Europe, Africa and India for Carnival...
article Totem Vodka and Indigenous Cultural Appropriation (9/2/2016)
(British Columbia) -- Cultural appropriation generally refers to the adoption of traditional practices, objects, or images by a person or group that is not part of the...
article O’Donnell: Appropriating is the new football (8/30/2016)
(Iowa) -- In four days, the population of Iowa City will substantially grow as thousands pile into Kinnick Stadium to watch the inaugural kickoff of the 2016 Hawkeye...
article Concert-goers wearing imitation war paint offensive, poet laureate says (8/23/2016)
(Nova Scotia) -- Halifax's poet laureate, Rebecca Thomas, is speaking out after a group of people attended a A Tribe Called Red concert at the Marquee Club in...
article Is it ever OK for a white person to wear a feather headdress? (8/18/2016)
(USA) -- Every year, at music festivals across the country, white people come equipped with flash tats, face paint, sunscreen, bottles full of vodka water and,...
article HILTZIK: Who owns the Crazy Horse strip club trademark? A federal court holds its nose and weighs in. (7/25/2016)
(California) -- Trademark disputes typically make for yawn-inducing prose, but not when they involve a nationwide battle over strip clubs. More precisely, a nationwide...
article Spiritual Vultures: Films Explore Cultural Appropriation by New Agers (7/25/2016)
(California) -- “This is a very sacred kiva,” says the late Thomas Banyacya, Hopi Traditional Spokesman, pointing to an ancient sacred site at Casa Rinconada...
article Brewer criticised for using Māori images on bottles (7/22/2016)
(New Zealand) -- Birkenhead Brewing Company used the names of Te Arawa ancestors Tutanekai and Hinemoa from Rotorua on two of their beer labels.
47 Total Articles on this Issue

Dakota Access Pipeline

article These Big Native American Facebook Pages Are Actually Being Run By People In Kosovo And Vietnam (12/2/2016)
(The Internet) -- As pipeline protesters at Standing Rock prepare to dig in for the winter, a growing network of dubious Native American Facebook pages is cashing in on...
1 Article on this Issue

Navajo Nation

article Navajo Nation settles dispute over sale of unauthorized 'Navajo' products (11/20/2016)
(Arizona) -- The Navajo Nation has reached a settlement with a major fashion retailer that sold "Navajo" products without the tribe's authorization. The...
article Urban Outfitters Settles Longstanding Lawsuit with the Navajo Nation (11/20/2016)
(Arizona) -- Retail clothing chain Urban Outfitters has developed a reputation over the years for ripping off other cultures in the name of fashion. One culture, though...
2 Total Articles on this Issue

Other News

article Horizon Zero Dawn Dev Responds to Criticism From Native American Writer Over Use of Certain Terms (3/4/2017)
(Internet) -- A Native American writer, Dia Lacina, recently called out Guerrilla Games over its use of certain terms in Horizon Zero Dawn without consideration of their...
article Two Ohio men sentenced after digging up human remains (3/1/2017)
(Ohio) -- Two Jackson County men have been sentenced to prison time after after digging up Native American remains and selling them. Brian K. Skeens, 49, and Toby Lee...
article 'This feels like an attack': Joseph Boyden responds to report questioning short story's originality (2/28/2017)
(Canada) -- Canadian author Joseph Boyden is once again on the defence after a news report highlighted similarities between one of his short stories and that of an...
article Five Charged With Selling Fake Native American Jewelry (2/22/2017)
(New Mexico) -- Five individuals are being charged with violating the Indian Arts and Crafts Act after they allegedly imported and fraudulently marketed fake Native...
article A lawsuit involving American Indian artifacts, alleged excessive force and a Utahn’s suicide has hit another wall (2/13/2017)
(Utah) -- A three-judge panel on Monday upheld the dismissal of a Utah family's lawsuit against a Bureau of Land Management agent blamed for the suicide of Blanding...
article VIDEO: Meet the artist battling Indigenous cultural appropriation with badass t-shirts and movie posters (2/5/2017)
(British Columbia) -- Artist Jay Soule has an alter ego: Chippewar. As Soule explains, it's a play on words: "Chippewa, Chippewarrior, Chippewar." So what...
article Ancient Tool Taken From a Wiyot Burial Ground Has Been Removed From Online Auction But Not Returned to Tribe (12/23/2016)
(California) -- Earlier this week we reported on a basalt pestle being sold in an online auction nearly 90 years after it was unearthed from a Wiyot burial ground on...
article This Wiyot Tool Dug Up 86 Years Ago by a Notorious Grave Robber is Being Sold in an Online Auction (12/22/2016)
(California) -- Among the thousands of auctions currently being hosted by the popular bidding website LiveAuctioneers.com is one called “A Native American &...
article Tribal officer says probation for looter is ‘slap in our faces’ (11/15/2016)
(California) -- The recent sentence of probation for a Mono County doctor who pleaded guilty to taking Native American artifacts from public lands in Death Valley and...
article Mark-Paul Gosselaar Is Sorry for ‘Saved by the Bell’ Episode About Native Americans (Video) (11/6/2016)
(USA) -- Mark-Paul Gosselaar is hoping to pass the peace pipe over a culturally questionable episode of “Saved by the Bell.” Gosselaar, who played Zack...
article MORON ALERT: Men arrested trying to find 'artifacts' on state land (10/21/2016)
(Florida) -- A Plant City man is behind bars for trying to steal state cultural artifacts, according to the Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission. Joshua Adam Myers is...
article Lawsuit over artifact looting case suicide in appeals court (9/22/2016)
(Colorado) -- The family of a Utah doctor who killed himself after his 2009 arrest in an artifact looting investigation that marked an early flashpoint in the rural...
article Skagway shop owner found not guilty of misrepresenting Native art (9/6/2016)
(Alaska) -- A Skagway shop owner was found not guilty of misrepresenting Native produced art in federal court on Friday. Rosemary Libert owns Lynch and Kennedy Dry Goods...
article Kings Mountain ‘medicine man’ pleads guilty to tax evasion, firearm charge (8/31/2016)
(North Carolina) -- A Kings Mountain “medicine man” who used cash from straw companies to build an underground survivalist bunker faces up to 15 years in...
article Man killed shortly after Facebook posts expose fake medicine man (8/11/2016)
(South Dakota) -- Soon after coming forward and exposing what he called a “fake,” Todd Little Bull was shot and killed near Kyle after several posts on...
article Spa trends: Sound vibrations, warm seashells, digital detox (8/7/2016)
(New York) -- Sound vibrations, warm seashells and a "digital detox" that involves surrendering your cellphone were among the healing and de-stressing...
article Expert explains how to spot a fake or stolen piece of Native American art (7/6/2016)
(New Mexico) -- We talk to an expert on what buyers can do to spot a fake or stolen piece of Native American art.
article Trial set for Skagway fake Alaska Native art case (6/27/2016)
(Alaska) -- A Skagway business owner and her employee are scheduled to go to trial for allegedly misrepresenting Alaska Native-produced goods. In the spring, both...
article Artifacts tell Native Americans' stories (6/12/2016)
(Illinois) -- Arrowheads, spear points, stone knives and ax heads in Eddie Johnson's collection bear silent witness to people who lived in the Mississippi River...
article Man pleads guilty in tribal art scam, others to go to trial (4/24/2016)
(Alaska) -- Two Juneau shop owners accused of selling fake Alaska Native artwork appeared in court this week, with one accepting a plea agreement and another setting a...

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