French fashion house Chanel has triggered an uproar by selling a luxury monogrammed boomerang with a price tag of nearly $1,500, with critics saying the accessory is an insult to Australian Aborigines.
Chanel is accused of turning the hunting weapon, an important part of Aboriginal heritage, into a status symbol by offering a black wood and resin boomerang for sale in its spring-summer collection.
"When I think about Aboriginal culture, I think @chanel," Aboriginal activist Nayuka Gorrie tweeted sarcastically.
"Have decided to save for the next three years so I can connect with my culture via @CHANEL."
He told the Guardian Australia that the item was "so wrong it is almost absurd."
"Having a luxury brand swoop in, appropriate, sell our technologies and profit from our cultures for an absurd amount of money is ridiculous and hurtful," he said, pointing out that indigenous people were the most disadvantaged in Australia and had to fight to preserve their traditions.
The furor kicked off when American make-up artist Jeffree Star posted photos online of the boomerang on Tuesday, sparking ridicule.
"@JeffreeStar, rather than paying AU$2,000 for a Chanel Boomerang you should look into investing in one made by an Aboriginal Australian," tweeted user LSP.
Another said on Twitter: "@CHANEL your ‘boomerang' is tacky and a gross appropriation of indigenous culture for your own profit."
Chanel released a statement saying it was "extremely committed to respecting all cultures, and regrets that some may have felt offended."
Boomerangs have played an important role in Aboriginal culture for thousands of years as objects of work and leisure. They have also become popular mass-produced souvenirs.
Please click to read our informative text prepared pursuant to the Law on the Protection of Personal Data No. 6698 and to get information about the cookies used on our website in accordance with the relevant legislation.
6698 sayılı Kişisel Verilerin Korunması Kanunu uyarınca hazırlanmış aydınlatma metnimizi okumak ve sitemizde ilgili mevzuata uygun olarak kullanılan çerezlerle ilgili bilgi almak için lütfen tıklayınız.