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What is cultural appropriation?
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The charge of 'cultural appropriation' stops us celebrating other cultures

Cultural appropriation prevents us from enjoying and celebrating each others' cultures.


Cultural appropriation prevents us from enjoying other cultures. It restricts our clothing and cooking choices and forces us to stay in our “cultural lane”.

The Argument

Cultural appropriation forces us to stay in our cultural lanes. We are not allowed to enjoy another culture’s clothing, language, hairstyles or body art without facing intense criticism and scrutiny. If we take cultural appropriation at face value, it prevents Americans or Europeans from practising yoga[1] because they do not have cultural roots in India or understand the cultural significance of the practice in Indian culture. [2] Just because one culture developed a design, look, or practice does not mean they are the only ones allowed to engage in that practice. To enforce this rule would limit societal growth and artistic progress.

Counter arguments

We are still allowed to enjoy other cultures. We can enjoy them through travel, through cooking classes, through reading books and consuming other cultures’ artwork. If we are invited to wear another culture’s clothes, at a wedding or other event where the culture we are borrowing from is represented and can give its consent, we can enjoy and appreciate another culture in that way. However, we cannot exploit another culture for financial gain or borrow from that culture without their consent or input. [3]



[P1] Cultural appropriation forces us to stay in our cultural lanes. [P2] This prevents us enjoying other cultures and prevents societal enrichment and artistic growth. [P3] Therefore, cultural appropriation is political correctness gone too far.

Rejecting the premises

[Rejecting P2] We can still enjoy other cultures, we just can't steal from them or exploit them.


This page was last edited on Friday, 2 Oct 2020 at 12:40 UTC

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