“…She always had a platform, and she was always destined to be who she is going to be… BUT, when I stepped in, it was a lot of codes being taught.. It was like “You can do this, you should start this, you can start this, you should start doing your hair like this…YOU SHOULD ADAPT, because YOU NEED BLACK PEOPLE to fu*% with you, because you need culture. If you aint got black people behind you, you aint got nothing… aint nobody gonna listen, you can’t influence nobody… So I had a lot to do with ALL that.” – Tyga
“…I don’t need to tell people I was helping her come up with her colors and names for her lipstick line.” – Tyga (I think you just told us)…
Now, why do I find all of this interesting? Well Kylie has been the target of some EXTREME cultural appropriation accusations. Everything from her look, to her style, to her entire persona has been called under question. Lets examine:
Remember this Instagram post by Kylie?
Well Hunger Games star Amanda Stenberg wasn’t feeling the early vibes and had a few words of her own in the photos comment section.
“When u appropriate black features and culture but fail to use ur position of power to help black Americans by directing attention towards ur wigs instead of police brutality or racism #whitegirlsdoitbetter,”
to which Kylie responded,
“@amandlastenberg Mad if I don’t, Mad if I do…. Go hang w Jaden or something.”
Back in July, black activist Brittany Packett accused Kylie Jenner of amassing her wealth off the back of black culture. This incident was namely brought on by Forbes recent magazine cover naming Kylie Jenner The Youngest Ever
Self-made means having succeeded in life unaided.
— Dictionary.com (@Dictionarycom) July 11, 2018
Am I the only one who sees a Dictionary.com sneak diss in here?
Brittany let off a series of tweets sharing her views, but the below pretty much sums it all up in context.
And notice-now that she’s made her fortune? Those lip fillers came out. The fake tan disappeared. Just like Miley Cyrus before her, she’ll exploit black culture and black people for as long as its profitable-and then return to the comfort of whiteness.
Why? Because it pays.
— Brittany Packnett (@MsPackyetti) July 11, 2018
Honestly? Kris Jenner is an evil genius cause she understands that in America, proximity to black culture will make you richer than being black ever will.
They used America for exactly what it is. Racist and capitalist.
None of us should be surprised.
— Brittany Packnett (@MsPackyetti) July 11, 2018
For a lengthier and more “matter-of-fact” version of what people are saying is a long history of the Kardashians appropriating black culture and creativity, check out the article below (written by a white woman, if you’re curious).
So what do I think about all this? Well, there are 3 main areas I want to respond to. I’ll make it quick.
- Kylies Cultural Appropriation accusations.
This is a tough area because my personal opinion would likely spawn anger from a few. But who gives AF right? Kylie was born in a culture of cultural appropriators. She was also growing up at a time when the “culture” was attempting to infiltrate her, and successfully so. The influences around her urged and encouraged the young Jenner to take paths she may or may have not chosen on her own. We’ve seen multiple instances throughout their upbringing of them attempting to separate themselves from their family identity and move independently. The Jenners are no different than the young white kid who grew up in the burbs in the midst of a culture, excelled in assimilation… and took advantage of societal flaws, are they to be faulted? Nope . The issue that most people have is they feel when someone appropriates a culture, there is an unspoken entitlement to speak on the behalf of that cultures problems and issues, as you are now benefiting off their creative histories, not to mention a
little lot of bitterness seeing someone outside of your culture being openly supported and celebrated, especially when the true creators are left out of the story… THAT is my problem, Re-writing the story through Appropriation. We see it in the industry as descendants are replaced in film media with inaccurate and often false depictions. We see it on the radio as black artists are slowly being phased out and replaced by a “much different” wave of talent… it can often feel like a cultural Blitzkrieg. But with the Kardashians, I don’t see it. Especially with the young Jenners. Though I may not care for their particular blueprints of success, ultimately the most envied and spoken about Kardashians are the one’s who openly adore and have had children with black men, and we know how pi**ed off that can make a few feminem activists.
- Tyga eluding that he helped Kylie appropriate Black Culture.
Most people see this as Tyga taking credit for Kylie’s success. I don’t. He stated she would have been successful with or without him in her life. Let’s not forget the age Kylie was when she met Tyga… which came with a definitely high level of influence. The girls entire style, swag, personality, and demeanor changed. We saw the escalation in her snaps, the progression of her images, the ways she began presenting herself. He 100% had a contributing role towards who she began. I would argue that she would have gotten to this point ANYWAY… Tyga just stream-lined the process.
- Forbes INSANELY claiming she was anything NEAR “Self-Made” GTFOH. The Internet Handled This one for me.
Yet still, amidst the drama… She’s sittin’ pretty.
I am happy with the success of the young Jenner, and hope she continues to do great in her career. The things she is targeted for lie far outside of her control, and she still has much learning (and growing) to do.