The problem is, ignoring public outrage is very much out of favor these days. As a result, public mea culpas can often seem disproportionate to the offense committed.
This morning I was staring as someone tweeted about a study at USC on Black Twitter. The tweet said something like, “look at three white men chosen to study black twitter!” There was a picture and I recognized one of the white men in question.
I also recognized the study.
I’ve been in the research field of late and the study has crossed my field of awareness. I knew of it, knew some of the people attached and know of the program in question.
So, I also knew that a black woman was lead investigator on that study.
As it often happens after you’ve been on Twitter for a while, there comes a point of saturation. No sophisticated, educated filtering or curating strategy can help avoid it, because Twitter works through or in spite of or within the limits of saturation.
We really need to think through the ways in which the critical approach to cultural appropriation may unfairly paper over a perfectly natural aspect of liberatory cultural encounters. These are important questions, because they determine how we might imagine ways of making identity and art in the future.