It is clear the staff at Christian Dior needs some sensitivity training. Their newest campaign has some colonizer undertones that are making people uneasy.
Hypebeast is reporting that the luxury brand has decided to pull their newest advertisement for their Sauvage cologne. Intended to be “an authentic journey deep into the Native American soul in a sacred, founding and secular territory” the clip features Johnny Depp in what is to be assumed to be sacred land. Next, the actor picks up a guitar and starts strumming the iconic “Rumble” riff made famous in Pulp Fiction. The music sends a Sioux Tribe member into dance.
Aside from what could be perceived as another the case of the White man taming the indigenous people the name of the product in question only adds to the insult. Unfortunately, the fragrance’s name is a direct translation to savage which is seen as one of the highest offenses to Native American people.
According to the press release that accompanied the visual, Dior worked with “consultants who are enrolled citizens of the Comanche, Isleta and Taos Pueblos and the Pawnee Nation, with years of experience fighting cultural appropriation and promoting authentic inclusion.”
Clearly, the intended mark was missed as the clip faced backlash with claims of using racial tropes and culturally undermining the progress Native Americans have made to protect their legacy.
You can view the misguided promotional effort below. The ad has since been pulled in the wake of the outrage.