We’re A Culture Not A Costume

Be mindful folks that Halloween is a notorious time for offensive outfits. If you’re still not sure what your costume is going to be this year, make sure you don’t go the culturally appropriative route. Dressing up as “another culture,” is racist, and an act of privilege. Not only does it lead to offensive, inaccurate, and stereotypical portrayals of other people’s culture (Do you think Día de los Muertos is just “Mexican Halloween”? Well it’s not, so put away your facepaint), but is also an act of appropriation in which someone who does not experience that oppression is able to “play,” temporarily, an “exotic” other, without experience any of the daily discrimination faced by other cultures. Like dressing up as a “sexy squaw” while being completely unaware of the horrific rates of sexual violence Native women face. (Read more about the harmful effects of sexualizing Native women by Adrienne at Native Appropriations).