01 September 2011

Slave Earrings!?!?

Vogue Italia had a little translation problem. See, they wanted to sell "Ethnic Earrings" but fouled up the translation and went with the word "slave." Oh, that does not make you fuming mad? How about this discription of them:
Jewellery has always flirted with circular shapes, especially for use in making earrings. The most classic models are the slave and creole styles in gold hoops.

If the name brings to the mind the decorative traditions of the women of colour who were brought to the southern Unites (sic) States during the slave trade, the latest interpretation is pure freedom. Colored stones, symbolic pendants and multiple spheres. And the evolution goes on.
Yes! Let's hearken back to the days when race was pure and people could be bought from your local trader.  It does not get more romantic than that!

The blog Deeper Than Twitter goes off on the campaign here and is worth reading. My primary reaction is confusion. When someone came up with this 'trend,' did everyone nod their head with approval thinking of the connection back to Italian's 'ethnic' ties? Nobody thought that it was at all offensive to name the earrings by that name?

Better yet, the Huffington Post wrote an article about the incident asking if it was offensive or innocent as if the two are mutually exclusive.