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Is Kim Kardashian West A Culture Vulture?
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The Social Intelligence Report
Published 2 years ago |
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Video transcript:
In June she offended in Japan with her use of the term Kimono, this month, it's Hawaii for using the terms Kilauea & Pele's curse.

Welcome to The Social Intelligence Report, in this episode, we'll ask the question: is Kim Kardashian West a culture vulture?

The Social Intelligence Report is sponsored by, a supplier of botanical-based products scientifically proven to naturally increase the number of adult stem cells circulating in your blood stream.

If you're not familiar with the situation, in June Kim Kardashian West decided to appropriate the name 'Kimono' for her shape wear collection. She also tried to trademark the term in the US, which was met with widespread condemnation.

The Kimono is a big part of traditional Japanese culture, and the ignorance shown to think it would be acceptable to use for underwear is breathtaking. The Japanese are among the most polite people on the planet, but many fans of Kim in Japan took the step of speaking out about her use of the term for undies.

With kimono at least, common sense has prevailed. Just days ago, Kim announced the brand will now be called SKIMS Solutionwear instead.

July brought with it another incident. Kim launched a new cosmetic line called Sooo Fire which includes shades like 'Fire,' 'Fiery Eruption' and 'Molten Magma. It also includes shades called Kilauea, the name of the active volcano on the big island, and Pele's curse. Pele is the name of Hawaii’s volcano goddess.

Critics took to Twitter to blast Kim’s new line — and many are describing the use of the names as being culturally insensitive.

Hawaii radio host Esme M. Infante wrote on social media, '@kimkardashian, please say this is a joke. You can’t use sacred words like ‘Pele’ and ‘Kilauea’ in this pilau way.' Pilau means putrid.

Another person wrote, 'It makes her look like she has no respect for anyone. She should’ve taken the same amount of time to produce this product to learn about the Hawaiian culture. She doesn’t have any connection to Kilauea or Pele. It’s nonsense.'

Neither incident is the first time Kim has faced scrutiny for cultural appropriation. In 2017, she launched her KKW beauty range to claims she was wearing black face, when a photo promoting her new Contour and Highlight Kit showed an extremely tanned Kim.

In 2018, Kim was criticized for wearing Fulani braids and in April this year, she was slammed for wearing traditional Indian gold maang tikka jewelry.

Given this history of perceived cultural insensitivity, Kim would be better advised to use terms not considered significant to other cultures. But you be the judge, is Kim Kardashian West a culture vulture?

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cultural appropriationhawaiijapanfirekilaueakim kardashian westcultureskimonosocial intelligencepele volcano goddessculture vultureshape wearJapanese cultureundiesSKIMS solutionwearSooo Firefiery eruptionmolten magmaPeles curseHawaiian cultureKKW beauty rangeKim K blackfacefulani braidsmaang tikka jewelrycultural insensitivity

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