Hunger Games actress Amandla Stenberg has accused several of today’s biggest stars of stealing from black culture.
Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, Miley Cyrus, Kim Kardashian and more are name-dropped in a video (titled Don’t Cash Crop My Cornrows) recorded for Amandla’s high school history class where she discusses white appropriation of black culture. Posted several months ago, the video has now gone viral.
“[In the 2010s,] pop stars and icons adopted black culture as a way of being edgy and gaining attention,” Stenberg says. “In 2013, Miley Cyrus twerks and uses black women as props, and then in 2014, in one of her videos called ‘This Is How We Do,’ Katy Perry uses Ebonics and hand gestures and eats watermelons while wearing cornrows before cutting inexplicably to a picture of Aretha Franklin. So as you can see, cultural appropriation was rampant.” (The Hollywood Reporter)
In the video, the 16-year-old also questions those celebrities who borrow from black culture but refuse to speak openly about issues plaguing black Americans. This, of course, echoes Azealia Banks’ criticism of Australian rapper Iggy Azalea’s silence following the non-indictments of Michael Brown and Eric Garner’s killers.
Amandla is no stranger to controversy. When it was revealed that she’d portray beloved Rue in the first installment of Hunger Games, the announcement was met with shocking racist speech from those disappointed that the character wasn’t white.
Watch Amandla’s video below.