Sunday, March 2, 2014

Blog # 3 by Yee Xiong

My third week of this challenge was quite dull; because I'm so used to not buying anything anymore, I went through the store without having second thoughts. But, I do remember this time when I was dying to buy small fluffy slippers so my feet wouldn't be cold when I wake up in the middle of the night to go use the restroom or go into the kitchen. 

In Jenny Strasburg's article, "Abercrombie & Glitch: Asian Americans Rip Retailer for Stereotypes on T-shirts", she reports on the Abercrombie and Fitch designed that was extremely racist towards the Asian American community. The company decided to design shirts that says "Wong Brothers", "Buddha Bash", and "Wok-n-Bowl". The photo below is how it looks like on the shirt; along with this design, it also has an "Asian" feel to it that the company thought its Asian customers would have loved:

The picture above is not something that should be considered funny or appealing to the Asian American community. If anything, it shows the ignorance of the company to understand the Asian American community and their lack of cultural competency. Furthermore, graphic designers who are involved with this process should have more of an understanding in how their work may be used to  offend others. For example, the last name, "Nguyen", is a Vietnamese name and because it sounds like "win", others think it is okay to use it for their own entertainment. 

It is embarrassing and completely wrong that people would think a design would be appealing to people from another culture. I believe there should also be a stricter screening process to disallow cases like the Abercrombie and Fitch case to continue. Asian Americans should also not buy into this because it would be mocking their own culture by purchasing such a design.

Inside source: Jenny Strasburg's, "Abercrombie & Glitch: Asian Americans Rip Retailer for Stereotypes on T-shirts"
Outside source:

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