Cultural Appropriation or Appreciation?

I am sure everyone remembers when he or she were younger to never copy anyone else and always try to be original. In the past year, the nation-wide clothing store Urban Outfitters has been caught under fire for selling clothes that were heavily influenced by other cultures and not giving the appropriate recognition that those particular cultures deserve.
Perhaps I am being biased, but one of the controversies that stuck out to me most was placing Ethiopian/Eritrean print as retail on the Urban Outfitters website, labeling it as “Vintage 90 Linen Dress” on sale for $209.00. Below are images taken from another blog site, which highlights some of the similarities between the traditional Ethiopian/Eritrean dress design and the dress that Urban Outfitters has placed on retail.

Screen Shot 2014-09-20 at 10.57.12 PM

Urban outfitters dress on Left. Makeda Seyoum in her traditional dress on Right.

Urban outfitters dress on Left. Makeda Seyoum in her traditional dress on Right.

What do you think: is Urban Outfitters displaying cultural appropriation or appreciation? Comment below!

-Tarikwa

Images from Olivia LaVecchia’s post on Minneapolis CityPages Blogs

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