Adele has made headlines, but this time it is not for her dramatic weight loss but for cultural appropriation. The 32-year-old singer came under fire on Sunday after sharing a photo to Instagram of herself wearing a bikini of the Jamaican flag and sporting bantu knots — a hairstyle traditionally worn by Black women.
"Happy what would be Notting Hill Carnival my beloved London," Adele captioned the image, referencing the annual London festival that has been postponed amid the coronavirus pandemic.
It was not long before backlash erupted.
"The outfit is fine, carnival is for everyone to come together. The hair is doing too much and comes off as a mockery to me," one Instagram user wrote.
"This is what happens when you invite too many people to the cookout no more invites #Adele #Bantu," a Twitter user noted.
Another Instagram user explained why Adele's hairstyle could be deemed offensive.
"For most Carribean people like myself who see this we arent upset. And the reason most African American people are upset is because it is literally illegal for black people to wear their hair how it naturally grows or in black hairstyles in certain spaces," Adele's follower wrote.
"Girls have been suspended for wearing braids at school. A boy was forced to cut his hair or forfeit his wrestling match, women and men alike have been either sent home from work or told to cut or straighten their hair because black hair is considered 'unprofessional' so that is why African Americans get so upset when people who never had to deal with those struggles wear certain black hair styles. Yes it may not be offensive to African people or Carribean people but to African Americans who still get penalized for hairstyles like this it's upsetting."
Not all of social media was against Adele's hairdo though. Many fans were quick to jump to her defense.
"They first criticized her for the decisions she made regarding HER BODY and now they are going to start this business of cultural appropriation ... leave Adele alone. #Adele," one Twitter user wrote.
"If American blacks think this is cultural appropriation they need to stop wearing clothing like suits and shoes and jackets and pants. All given to you by Europeans," an Instagram user chimed in.
"From a Jamaican... Thank you for wearing our colours , thank you for embracing our culture," another Instagram follower added.
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