Gucci Accused of Culturally Appropriating Sikh Turban

Turban covers the knot of hair which followers of Sikhism allow growing naturally out of respect for God’s creation. Sikhs make up 0.39 percent of the world population, that comes around 27 million. Approximately 83 percent Sikhs live in India. Covering one’s hair with a turban was made an official policy by Guru Gobind Singh, the tenth Guru of the Sikhs. The main reasons to wear turban are to take care of the hair, promote equality, and preserve the Sikh identity.

Italian fashion house Gucci came under fire over its latest fashion show where it featured white models wearing pieces that looked like traditional Sikh turbans and Muslim hijabs for its autumn and winter 2018 show.

Canadian actor and model Avan Jogia seem to have started the criticism against Gucci tweeting earlier Wednesday: “Yo.. @gucci … I mess with you guys… but this isn’t a good look for you… could you not find a brown model?” along with an image from the show of a white male model wearing a blue turban.

India-based restaurateur Harjinder Singh Kukreja wrote on Twitter: “Dear @gucci, the Sikh Turban is not a hot new accessory for white models but an article of faith for practising Sikhs. Your models have used Turbans as ‘hats’ whereas practising Sikhs tie them neatly fold-by-fold. Using fake Sikhs/Turbans is worse than selling fake Gucci products.”

The New York-based Sikh Coalition civil rights group tweeted on Friday: “The Sikh turban is a sacred article of faith, @gucci, not a mere fashion accessory. #appropriation. We are available for further education and consultation if you are looking for observant Sikh models.”


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