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Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

Louis Vuitton’s ‘Out of Africa’ fantasy

Using locations in Africa as backdrops to sell clothes and bags is nothing new – especially bags and clothes that certain class of travellers and outdoorsy people like to call “gear”. As in “stuff necessary to show you’re ready for hardship.” Sometimes, though, the mythology referenced, re-ignited, and re-iterated in newly romaticised packaging is so…well, moronic that...

Friday, February 7th, 2014

What’s new? Blackface as carnival costume in the Netherlands

By now it should not come as a surprise that in the Netherlands where dressing in blackface is part of the national tradition (read here and here about our December “traditions”) and comes with no consequences, carnival costumes...

Friday, January 17th, 2014

Delicious Skin Lightener

Skin lighteners in Africa have a long history – so the appearance of Whitenicious skin lightening cream isn’t that surprising. What’s new is that the model used in the advert (heavily photoshopped) not only has a “lighter”...

Saturday, December 14th, 2013

Consuming Woolworths’ Tribute to Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela presents a complex, complicated, even contradictory set of public images that have been cycled and recycled in ways that allow many stakeholders to appropriate and mobilise his legacy. Of course corporate entities do not have...

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

Blackface: Fresh as the sea and funny, or tired, racist bull?

Imagine our feigned surprise at AIAC when blackface reared its head again, this time in a South African advertisement for the Cape Town Fish Market. The ad (below), posted on Youtube earlier this week, uses air quotes...

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

Germany’s African “Big Five”

On the occasion of the country’s first “development day” last week, the German ministry for economic cooperation and development launched a new campaign to educate Germans about what development policy is—or more accurately what the “new German...

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