This open letter from model Leomie Campbell to the Sunday Times about racism in the fashion industry is fascinating. Not so much for the tales about the racism.
Nope, what is most striking to me is how Campbell equivocates throughout the entire piece and then ends with:
I don’t think talking about racism in fashion will change anything. Even if fashion changes, it’s not going to change the world. I’d rather just have a positive attitude. If I were feeling discriminated against, I might go into a casting thinking I’m not going to get this job. It’s negativity that will disadvantage me.
Well, what's the point of writing this open letter if not to "talk about racism"? Lawd!
It's interesting to watch the millennial generation – Campbell is 19 – tie themselves in knots trying to talk about race in a world where they have been told that it is not something that we need to talk about anymore. Clearly they want to. Clearly Campbell wants to talk about what it is really like to be a black model, but she knows she can't just call the entire industry racist — even though the primary goal of the fashion industry is to reinscribe whiteness and white beauty standards around the world, i.e. racist.
If anything, despite her prostestations, Campbell's letter makes the need to address racism in the fashion industry more critical than ever.
(H/T The YBF)