Cultural appropriation fears discourage interaction

Campus Reform
June 28, 2018

A new survey of cultural trends found that the fear of being accused of appropriation is discouraging some people from interacting with other cultures.

According to a recent survey conducted by the website Tee Hunter, 36 percent of young adults between the ages of 18-24 and 27 percent of adults between 25-34 are allowing the fear of committing cultural appropriation to keep them from trying new things.

The survey found that this number shrinks among older age demographics, with only 16 percent of respondents between the ages of 35-44 admitting that they avoid “cultural things” for fear of being offensive.

Aside from young people, the fear of committing the social crime of “cultural appropriation” also keeps minorities from experiencing other cultures.

According to the report, “35 percent of American Indians or Alaska Natives, followed by 33 percent of Asian or Asian-Americans, 26 percent of black or African-Americans, and 25 percent of Hispanic respondents said they refrained from any activities associated with a culture not their own.”

The same report also highlighted the answers of various participants when they were asked to explain the concept of cultural appropriation in their own words.

The negative definitions, culled mostly from white participants, defined it using terminology such as “using the trappings of a culture other than your own without really understanding/honoring that culture” and “stealing or borrowing from another culture that you have no ties to, especially for financial gain.”

  • A d v e r t i s e m e n t

On the other hand, those that gave definitions that trivialized the concept of cultural appropriation as a non-issue, such as calling it “cultural exchange but put into a ‘victim’ context” and “an arbitrary set of limitations imposed on the behavior of whites,” were largely minority participants.


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