- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 1, 2016

Victoria’s Secret is taking friendly fire from a leading women’s magazine for allegedly showcasing “racist” underwear at the Grand Palais in Paris this week.

Cosmopolitan published an op-ed on Wednesday blasting the 2016 Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show for “cultural appropriation” by “a sexist, patriarchal, mostly white corporation [that] continues to take what it wants for its own gain.” Themes and garments inspired by countries like China and Mexico were particularly galling to writer Helin Jung.

“Stripping of cultures aside, the emblems that stood out most were the ones that came from Asia — specifically China. The dragon that Elsa Hosk wore wrapped around her body, the embroidered stiletto boots seen on Adriana Lima, the tail made of flames worn by Kendall Jenner,” Ms. Jung reported in a piece titled, “Why Can’t Victoria’s Secret Stop Designing Racist Lingerie?”

“There’s a lot of talk of China as a dominant world power of the 21st century, and the U.S. government, Hollywood, and now Victoria’s Secret, it seems, are pivoting to face a new reality,” the writer continued. “But the Orientalism on display here doesn’t show an understanding or an attempt at dialogue. It doesn’t close any gaps. What condescension, for Victoria’s Secret to think that by wrapping a model in a dragon, it could connect directly with a new consumer in China.”

The author added that “hoodwinked” individuals consider the pageantry innocuous.

“The brand and its creative leads shamelessly cherry-picked imagery, breaking apart aesthetic references from wherever they wanted and stitching them back together again. They’re telling us its worldliness. It’s not, it’s a hack job,” the writer said.

Men and women around the world will be able to judge for themselves on Dec. 5 if Victoria’s Secret sells “racist” underwear. Footage from the event will air in 190 countries around the world.

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