Elle UK slammed by Native Americans for ‘racist’ cover
The UK edition of Elle has come under fire for its latest cover, which features Pharrell Williams sporting a feathered headdress.
Thousands of social media users have branded the photo ‘disrespectful’ and ‘racist’ because the traditional feather headpiece is a sacred symbol for Native Americans.
Within hours of the July issue’s release, people had taken to both Pharrell‘s and the Elle UK Facebook pages, sharing their anger with the hashtag ‘nothappy’, in reference to the singer’s recent hit, Happy.
One user wrote: ‘Bad move Elle… very disrespectful, he has no business wearing that.’
Another posted: ‘Please stop your stylists from exploiting native culture on photo shoots. You should know better.’
And from a third furious user: ‘Are you kidding me? This is the most disturbing overtly racist, disrespectful cooptation of a cultural object.’
Others took the opportunity to educate about the meaning of a feather headdress.
One Facebook user, Ruth Rose, explained: ‘The headdress is sacred, it was worn by those who were revered and chosen to lead the people. It’s not meant to be a fancy headdress for trendsetting.’