Cardi B Apologize For Depicting Hindu Goddess In Shoe Ad
Rapper Cardi B has apologized to the Hindu community after been accused of being “disrespectful” for depicting the Hindu goddess Durga on the cover of Footwear News.
For the November cover of Footwear News, the “WAP” rapper held a sneaker from her collaboration with Reebok as eight arms stretch out around her. The shoot, which sparked criticism from the Hindu community, was intended to pay homage to the principal Hindu goddess of war, strength and protection.
Footwear News shared the controversial images with the caption: “Like Durga, Cardi B is a dominant female voice at a critical time.” The post has since been deleted.
📸 | Cardi B in the exclusive photoshoot for Footwear News, shot by Jora Frantzis, posing with her Cardi x Reebok Club C sneakers. (1/3)
— Cardi B Poland 🇵🇱 | Fan Account (@CardiPoland) November 10, 2020
Fans accused Cardi B of cultural appropriation for her depiction of Durga. Others said that it was additionally inappropriate to use her likeness for a shoe advertisement since worshippers remove their shoes before entering Hindu temples.
Cardi B said she wasn’t trying to be disrespectful on her Instagram page on Wednesday.
“When I did the Reebok shoot, the creatives told me I was going to represent a goddess, that she represents strength, femininity and liberation, and that’s something I love and I’m all about,” she said.
She continued: “And though it was dope, if people think I’m offending their culture or their religion I want to say I’m sorry. That was not my intent. I do not like disrespecting nobody’s religion. I wouldn’t like people to offend my religion. I wasn’t trying to be disrespectful. Maybe I should have done my research. I’m sorry, I can’t change the past, but I will do more research for the future.”
Footwear News also released a statement to People, apologizing for its actions. “Yesterday we posted content from our exclusive Cardi B cover shoot. One of the images was intended to pay homage to Hindu goddess Durga, and our intent was to show a powerful woman. However, we realize we were not considerate of certain cultural and religious perspectives and how this could be perceived as deeply offensive.”
“We take full accountability for this oversight and we apologize,” the statement added. “It is important we learn from this example and are sensitive to this sort of religious imagery when creative discussions are taking place in the future. Today, we’re releasing another cover from the shoot that was a subscriber exclusive.”