Why US teen's cheongsam sparks online debate(South China Morning Post) An American teenager has received support from internet users in China after being criticised for wearing a traditional Chinese dress to her school prom.
The 18-ear-old was called a racist and accused of cultural appropriation for wearing a red qipao to her prom. Cultural appropriation is defined as the act of taking or using things from a culture that is not your own
Keziah Daum, an 18-year-old from Utah in the United States, who has no Chinese roots, was accused of “cultural appropriation” after posting photographs on Twitter that featured her in a traditional Chinese qipao, or cheongsam.
She was not aware of the dress’ history before buying it at a vintage shop in Salt Lake City, she said in an email, but “simply found a beautiful, modest gown and chose to wear it”.
“One person commented it represented female empowerment,” she wrote. “If that is the case, then it is a wonderful message for any young woman my age to learn, regardless of culture and background.
“I posted photos for my friends to see. I never imagined it would go so far.
“I am sorry if anyone was offended. That was never my intention. I am grateful I was able to wear such a beautiful dress.”
But those commenting in mainland China were less opposed to Daum’s dress.
“Very elegant and beautiful! Really don’t understand the people who are against her, they are wrong!” one person commented on an article by Wenxue City News. “I suggest the Chinese government, state television or fashion company invite her to China to display her cheongsam!” http://i.dailymail.co.uk/i/newpix/2018/04/30/16/4BB55D1F00000578-5674661-Pose_In_one_group_shot_Keziah_and_her_female_friends_can_be_seen-m-20_1525103767191.jpg
Pose: In one group shot, Keziah and her female friends can be seen posing with their hands clasped palm to palm, bowing. She said the pose is the 'Papa Bless' pose popularized by YouTuber Ethan Klein
Lam appeared to be the first person to attack Daum for her dress. His tweet quickly went viral causing other people to jump in and criticize the teen
Daum, posing with her prom date, she had done some research on the dress and fell in love with it even more when she learned that it became a symbol for female empowerment
Daum said she never meant to cause any commotion or misunderstanding, but does not regret wearing the dress