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Boston museum cancels 'Kimono Wednesdays' after racism protests

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What in the world is wrong with the museums proposed "Kimono Wendesdays"? PC out of control yet again.

76 ( +83 / -9 )

I'll bet the people calling Kimono Wednesday racist, are not even Japanese.

82 ( +81 / -2 )

The museum said it had hoped to create an “interactive experience,” helping museum goers appreciate the rich details, embroidery and fine materials of the garments.

Open a retail shop or a show-room...purpose served.

-18 ( +6 / -24 )

People hurl the words "racist" and "bigot" too easily these days.

66 ( +70 / -6 )

How is it racist? Or imperialist for that matter? Just who are these faceless "protesters"?

How much does anyone care to bet they originate from somewhere near Japan?

34 ( +39 / -5 )

This is just odd, there are time to time cases of cultural appropriation where a minority group has aspects of its culture used by another larger group without any real benefit or even to the detriment of the minority group.... but really in this case?

Have any of these people ever visited Japan?

Not only do the vast majority of Japanese people want to share their culture, this exact very practice of people trying on a Kimono, or dressing up as a Samurai, in large part particularly for foreigners, is fairly common.

30 ( +30 / -1 )

I think the protestors were Korean.

18 ( +35 / -18 )

Some people will be offended by anything.

35 ( +35 / -1 )

Harumph. I say we all go over to Boston with our kimonos on and check out the Museum of Fine Arts.

34 ( +35 / -2 )

No mention of exactly who these protesters are.

23 ( +23 / -0 )

I would like to apologize on behalf of America. The USA has some serious mental illness with its obsession on race.

46 ( +51 / -6 )

So... they don't like Monet?

14 ( +14 / -0 )

I think the protestors were Korean.

No they were not (exclusively Korean). They were Asian Americans minus any Japanese Americans.

6 ( +14 / -8 )

I would like to apologize on behalf of America.

Apology not accepted! It's not your fault and even if you are an American it isn't your place to apologize for anything. The museum in question should have some cojones and do it anyway. They are the one's who bear the blame for twisting in the wind and letting public opinion sway their decision making process (read that as wimps).

This plan by the museum was mundane to say the least, it isnt erotic nor sick, nor racist, no imperialist, and the people who forced them to change their plans are narrow minded bigots.

20 ( +25 / -6 )

I used to like Boston. Pity they're so absolutist, not to mention racist.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Things are being take too seriously these days and it seems that if one person is offended by anything, it must be dealt with using the "r" word.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

@ Yubaru....The museum in question should have some cojones and do it anyway. They are the one's who bear the blame for twisting in the wind and letting public opinion sway their decision making process (read that as wimps).

It's not public opinion! It's a small handful of silly protesters!!! True public opinion would result in 'Kimono Wednesdays'. They catered to a vocal minority.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

WAY too much missing info:

-the kimonos were provided by the museum (to match the one in the painting)

-this painting made a tour of Japan previously (Tokyo, Nagoya, Kyoto) where the kimonos were also provided for anyone there to try for a photo op as well (including gaijin visitors). It was popular in those places.

-the kimonos in Boston were provided by sponsor NHK

-there were about 3 protesters total holding hand made signs in he gallery. Yes, three. At first the museum ignored them (on some days it was just one or two). Then they set up a Facebook page. The online protest was much larger (slack-tivism at its best). Then they bombarded the museum's Facebook page. "Cultural appropriation" and "Orientalism" were the primary concerns.

-Though Asian-Americans, none of the named protesters who were physically present had Japanese names (some may say they are overreacting on the racism part, but it does make me wonder if the idea of the museum putting a positive little spotlight on Japan didn't also play into it. Wouldn't surprise me if maybe this got some "Cool Japan" funds as well?).

-Most Interestingly: the painting itself depicts Monet's wife in the kimono as well as a blond wig to emphasize her European-ness. Its understood that Monet was actually making fun of the late 19th century Japan craze (as well as all things east Asian) known as “japonisme" that was sweeping through France. Hence the title, 'Looking East'. So Monet himself through this very painting was mocking "cultural appropriation" and "Orientalism". So with that in mind, what does the offer to wear kimonos and/or the protests actually translate to? (I just think Monet is laughing in his grave).

42 ( +41 / -0 )

"It said similar events took place when the painting, depicting a woman in a kimono, travelled throughout Japan for an exhibition."

And you have to think the Japanese were absolutely thrilled to pose for photos in front of Claude Monet’s “La Japonaise.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

“Asian-Americans in this country have a history of being mis- or underrepresented — they’re either completely absent from the media or only depicted as Kung Fu, exoticized, mystical, dragon ladies, prostitutes, or what have you,” said Christina Wang, 29, who held a sign that read, “Try on the kimono, learn what it’s like to be a racist imperialist !!!today!!!” She added: “This event that the MFA is putting on — asking the public to come don the kimono — is part of that legacy.”

Hateful, hateful stupidity.

15 ( +17 / -2 )

It is racial discrimination. If Japanese museum did the same thing, Japanese citizens would criticize them. But I can guess what kind of guys lead such an absurd protest. Many Japanese no longer trust them.

-31 ( +1 / -30 )

So a Japanese lady wearing a skirt and blouse posing in front of the Mona Lisa is being racist?

20 ( +22 / -2 )

And yet dressing up as a plastic leprechaun for st Patrick's day is not racist...go figure.

26 ( +27 / -1 )

How can this be racist? Do any of these protesters know what racism is? Since when is 'Japanese' a race?

I can't stand the confusion in my mind.

Some people are wankers.

30 ( +29 / -0 )

This article seems incomplete. How is wearing a "kimono" racist??? Is it the painting? This is totally out of left field.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

@Jumin

And yet dressing up as a plastic leprechaun for st Patrick's day is not racist...go figure.

I'm intrigued... Why a "plastic" leprechaun?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Is easy, put a japanese traditional clothes exhibition... then add some chinese and korean communities... Nationalism roots evoked... racism made!!!

6 ( +7 / -1 )

@Elizabeth

Some people are wankers.

Ha! Could Shakespeare have said it better? My wife would have said exactly the same, only in Japanese... ; )

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Who protested this? Probably the same idiots that tried to stop the 2 Nagasaki sites from getting World Heritage Status recently. (Which did get the status) Once again people need to get over the past not dwell in it.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

How was it racist? The museum needs to borrow a couple of cannon balls and wear them, AND go ahead with letting people experience a kimono.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

@Luca: plastic as in fake, not real, and in this case demonstrating that the person celebrating St Patrick's Day is not really in anyway Irish.

The museum in Boston needs to restart the interactive experience.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

This is absolutely not racist or imperialist. Those protesters have something clearly wrong with them. The museum should never have cancelled or apologized.

17 ( +17 / -0 )

Why not just ignore the nutjobs who make this kind of comment?

8 ( +10 / -2 )

@Britlover

Of course, thank you. I was thinking of "plastic" as in a garden gnome or something....

2 ( +3 / -1 )

is it just me or every little thing in America could always be subjected to racism?

10 ( +10 / -0 )

So it is ok to refuse service to non japanese, but it is racist when non japanese wear a kimono? Got it.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Plonkers.

Trying on a kimono is racist? How about trying a bit of sushi? Ramen? Only 'real' Japanese allowed to eat them, too?

That would be racist. Sharing culture isn't.

Some of the comments on the Museum's FB page are truly weird. I could not imagine going around with all that angst in my head the whole time. (This is honestly one of the most vilely racist things I've ever seen. .....fragile white folks feeling entitled to orientalize because they have no conception of how damaging these kinds of things are..."Playing Asian" is racist!!...this deserves an retraction and apology...This is wrong on so many levels)

There do seem to be more 'don't be stupid' posts, though. Most people are not plonkers. Pity the Museum caved.

16 ( +18 / -2 )

My colleague gave me a kimono and encouraged me to wear it. Was she trying to trick me into being racist?

17 ( +17 / -0 )

Three people who were not Japanese, decried "Orientalism"! (Which is turn of the century occidental fascination of all things Asian; but limited in scope to a narrow interest range). They then compared that proclaimed narrow viewpoint to racist imperialist dogma.

My guess is that from their viewpoint, the purported experience was a hand-picked one that failed to represent all things Asian and failed to meet their measure or bar standard.

But how do people get interested in the customs and mores of another society? I was introduced by the very same things that the thirty-somethings were using as an example of racism: Namely Kung-Fu, dragon ladies and etc. It was only later when informally introduced to the culture that my spectrum of interests widened.

What happened here is indicative of the "vocal minority" destroying everything and anything that would raise the occidental conscious to the slightest inclination towards interest in the Asian cultures.

These three women by ranting like a mental 10 year old because they perceive that "their" culture has been slighted have done more damage to the visitors who have a passing interest or fancy in things Asian!

https://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/style/2015/07/07/mfa-backs-down-over-kimono-event-response-protests/lv9NHcnpW0lsRE77d9hvkI/story.html#

8 ( +9 / -1 )

These protesters must have brains truly wired incorrectly. It's a shame the museum caved in to these people.

13 ( +13 / -0 )

I'll protest the fact BMW has not given me a free car. Time to start a Facebook page, Twitter rant, Instagram barrage. I'll have that free car in no time.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Someone said it well, "I'm offended that so many people are so easily offended." The museum should have had the balls to say "We're very sorry that you don't like the exhibit. However, it is quite popular and we have no plans to make any changese in the near future. Have you tried Cowboy Tuesdays? Visiters can dress like cowboys, shoot guns and pose next to our John Wayne wax doll.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

One of the "students?"who organized this lives in Cambridge, Mass. Just a hop, skip and a jump over to the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. Rather convenient if you ask me.

slack-tivism at its best

Agree

These people should be addressing child prostitution or sex trafficking in Asia, not this "try on a Kimono" experience.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

I think this is an extension of the "I am not a costume" campaign against college kids dressing ghetto or dressing up in kimonos, turbans, Native American outfits, etc. for Halloween. That campaign had a point, but it's a really fine line between racism and respectfully having fun.

I don't think the museum crossed the line into racism though. Go to Kyoto and you'll find Japanese people offering kimonos for visitors to rent and take pictures in. I went to a Korean restaurant the other day run by Koreans that had traditional Korean outfits for visitors to wear.

It's all about intent and respect. Those things can be hard to discern, but it's important to pay attention to nuance and not cry racism at every turn.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Oh for the love of god. As much as Japan does my head in I fear that the PC police have gone waaaaay too far in may western countries. I once had a friend get told she was racist for wearing a kimono. In her wedding picture. In the picture was her Japanese husband. And the wedding was in... Japan.

Funny, do these people get upset when Japanese folks wear jeans? I highly doubt it. I don't get upset when I see a non Scottish girl in a kilt like skirt.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

this is truely what is wrong with the world these days: when a handful of idiots can create fake outrage and bend an institution to its will. FB and twitter should be destroyed.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

As usual we don't get the whole story here. We even got a slanted version. After digging through the inter-webs I got to the protesters Facebook page and now I understand why they were against the display...or not. They feel that the painting was not represented well by the museum. It seems that the event didn't educate visitiors like it states, but just allow them to pose... exactly like the painting. Meaning, not understanding the culture but just dawning a costume and having fun playing dress-up. The protesters wanted the painting explained...These are their words from Facebook," WHAT SPECIFICALLY IS THE MFA INFORMING VISITORS ABOUT JAPONISME? About Monet’s personal collection of Japanese artifacts? Why not that Japan was an isolationist nation until 1854 when the United States forced Japan to open its borders at gunpoint, and that’s how japonisme got its start. Nor that japonisme is part of the larger narrative of Orientalism within the context of places colonized by Europe and the U.S. as a means to generate iconography that reinforces stereotypes that justifies imperialist domination and enslavement. Orientalism exoticizes (read: others, demeans and obscures) many cultures including South Asian, East Asian and Middle Eastern traditions, and resulting aggressive attitudes (both micro and macro) towards Orientalized peoples persist to this day. Also, what is the ‘better understanding’ they hope visitors to come away with? If the MFA wants to make a point about dressing up being a respectful and authentic cultural experience, then why call the event ‘Kimono Wednesdays’ when in fact the garment is an uchikake?"

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

How is it racist? Or imperialist for that matter? Just who are these faceless "protesters"? How much does anyone care to bet they originate from somewhere near Japan?

LOL Exactly. I bet you a 100 won or rmb they do.

"We're very sorry that you don't like the exhibit. However, it is quite popular and we have no plans to make any changes in the near future. Have you tried Cowboy Tuesdays? Visiters can dress like cowboys, shoot guns and pose next to our John Wayne wax doll."

Great idea. You should be the museum's program director. :)

5 ( +5 / -0 )

The ethnicity of the cretins in this protest is irrelevant, and talk of it drags us down to their gutter.

What is relevant is their anti-intellectual fascism, echoing the Cultural Revolution's red guards.

What next? Picket Eminem? Ban St. Patrick's Day?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

One of those skimpy cheerleader-style "kimono" college girls wear on Halloween: ok that's disrespectful and tasteless

Being able to try on authentic kimono in a respectful atmosphere with the purpose of enjoying art: respectful and a unique experience...right? No?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Man. I'm not Japanese and I probably might never get to go to Japan. It would be really really neat to see people in Kimono's just to see how it looks on real people. But because of some people, Americans may never get to enjoy this culture in that aspect. Isn't that what America is all about? The big melting pot. :-(

10 ( +11 / -1 )

The kimono in question does not seem to be an ordinary type of kimono, but one worn by a courtesan. I think this issue should be discussed from a feminist point of view rather than a racist one.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

@ Todd Seller Just do a Google image search for Tokyo Station or Shibuya Crossing; ALL of the Japanese people you will see in those pictures will be wearing kimono; it's really a sight to see! (The ones not in kimono MUST be foreigners.)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This is one of the stupidest things I've ever heard. How is it in any way racist? I'll tell you what it is. It's the politically correct nazis who feel it's their business to destroy any trace of common sense in the world. Probably white people. The making and wearing of kimonos is a beautiful art. One of the things I missed the most when i returned to the US after living in Japan, was not seeing beautiful women in kimonos. There is immense grace and beauty. And a museum seems to me to be a great place to celebrate that grace and beauty. As well as to show people that wearing a kimono is pretty darn comfortable, too. But the political correctness nazis are bound and determined to turn the world into shades of gray, a boring, non ethnic, non individualist hell on Earth.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

I'm going to go to Boston, put my yukata on and go to the museum. Or would that be racist?

6 ( +6 / -0 )

I hate outrage culture. I hate this PC BS. This might as well be mental totalitarianism. Accuse people of being offensive, and then forcing them to behave and act a certain way. Total crap.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

This is crazy. I've visited a popular Japanese garden in Tokyo, and sometimes they have some Japanese clothes on display. There's a platform where visitors can stand and put those clothes on to have their photo taken in full view of everyone else. Nobody has complained.

juan carlos:

Is easy, put a japanese traditional clothes exhibition... then add some chinese and korean communities... Nationalism roots evoked... racism made!!!

This has got nothing to do with Chinese, Korean or nationalism. Stop stirring it.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Happi Coat mondays? Yukata tuesdays?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yuriotani: "I think the protestors were Korean."

I don't think the idea of Kimono Wednesday is racist, but your comment is. Why on earth would exclusively Korean people be protesting such an event.

I also think its PC overkill, but if it's perceived as racist, it's old the museum addressed it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

A true WTF reaction, there is nothing racist about wearing a kimono!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Kimono is also called Gofuku(呉服) meaning clothing from GO(Wu Dynasty of Ancient China) so it not only repesents Japan but ancient China as well.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Rumour has it that a protest movement is underway in Tokyo insisting that the practice of wearing western style clothing, in particular the use of zippers and shoelaces, is unacceptably racist.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

You should tell this group of idiots what you feel about them and this initiative on their facebook page (like I just did)... Such a shame to cancel this exhibition, that took a lot of resources to prepare!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Someone's been drinking the koolaid.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Yuri Otani "I think the protestors were Korean"

I think you hit the nail on the head.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Japanese would never call this event at the museum "racism", as we have a pride in our culture and are very grateful if people of other countries take interest in it. There might be some mistakes or preconceived ideas, but still, having an interest in something is the first step to understand it.

If those people, although I don't know whether they are really Asians, have a pride in Oriental culture, they should not do this kind of thing. Because it is to block the understanding of others and even escalate the biases.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

If the Kimonos are real and they are to be worn properly with a someone versed in "kitsuke" assisting so that it is worn properly, I see nothing wrong with it, On the other hand if the "kimonos" are going be on a hanger rack and vistiting women are going to wear them like hotel bathrobes and shove chopsticks into their hair,,,yea it's racist alright.

-15 ( +2 / -17 )

The BBC has some more info on this... http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-trending-33450391

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Kimonos are very beautiful garments, even in Anime and Manga!

5 ( +5 / -0 )

If you read most of the comments on the Facebook page, most of them are saying this is completely ridiculous and these idiot protestors should be ashamed of themselves. And not ONE of the names that I could see protesting it was remotely Japanese. Quite a few other Asian nations though.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

The story is seriously incomplete without more information about who is doing the protesting and why.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

My wife just bought the two of us new summer yukata for after the bath. I suppose I'll have to return it now.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Does this mean as a gaijin I'm not allowed to speak Japanese anymore? Surely my attempts to imitate the intonation and pronunciation of Japanese people is taking the piss.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

All readers, please stay on topic.

Unbelievable! But then-so much nowadays can be labelled as "Racist". It's become a very popular and overused epithet.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"

Cultural appropriation" and "Orientalism" were the primary concerns.

@Supy11

Thank you for posting that.

This whole notion of "cultural appropriation" is a joke because, guess what, people of all ethnic backgrounds adopt elements of other ethnic backgrounds all the time in terms of apparel, food, the arts and intellectual pursuits — it is a positive tendency of humanity, not negative.

Along those lines, there was controversy in Seattle a couple of years back because a Japanese sushi shop whose owner is a Japanese national hired a Caucasian woman as a sushi chef. She was accused of cultural appropriation, and was also subject to scorn for being a woman in a men's domain — double whammy. Fortunately, the owner stood up to the voices of irrationality.

http://www.seattletimes.com/life/lifestyle/owner-of-sushi-bar-fires-back-at-comments-from-lsquobigot-dinersrsquo/

2 ( +2 / -0 )

These misguided student activist's purpose is not to have a open and honest debate into perceptions of Race.

These protests are fundamentally a nauseating form of direct confrontational action, to impose their blinkered political views and opinions, to stifle and muzzle, it their view or nothing.

These tin pot fascists have successfully though aggressive force made The Museum of Fine Arts Boston a scapegoat for theses own 'cultural' and paranoia and inadequacies. It is so typical of the current trend to succumb to a mind numbing political dumb meets dumber behaviour, a crass imbecilic dullard approach.

Society needs to be able to understand though sensible discussion what constitutes racism or extremism, not intimidation and bullying.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

A quote from the article in the Boston papers-

"Asian-Americans in this country have a history of being mis- or underrepresented — they’re either completely absent from the media or only depicted as Kung Fu, exoticized, mystical, dragon ladies, prostitutes, or what have you,” said Christina Wang, 29, who held a sign that read, “Try on the kimono, learn what it’s like to be a racist imperialist !!!today!!!” She added: “This event that the MFA is putting on — asking the public to come don the kimono — is part of that legacy.”

Pictured are a white woman, an Indian woman, and a woman who might be Asian protesting. Holy Toledo...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Can't the article dig in deeper as to WHY the protesters felt it was racist because I can't see an ounce of reasoning as to how it is racist. Truly pathetic and a loss for those that would have enjoyed what this program could have offered because of these mindless idiots screaming racists over misguided ideology. The museum should have more common sense as well.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"It's cultural appropriation' say Japanese (and others) on the Museum's FB page. Coming from a country that sent envoys to the US, England and many other countries to import Western culture wholesale, it's pretty ironic.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

YuriOtani: "I think the protestors were Korean."

On a thread about perceived racism you find absolutely nothing wrong with assuming that anyone complaining is from one certain ethnic background? It makes zero sense that they would (all) be Korean, first and foremost. But, pres tel, and I ask this out of curiousity and not assumption, why do you think they are all Korean? What grounds do you have for that that does not imply some kind of racial bias?

Who cares what nationality they are, regardless. It's a silly thing to be complaining about, and I can't see how anyone but Japanese might perceive it as being racist, and only then if it were done to poke fun about Japanese displaying peace signs for photos in front of said painting. Given that that does not seem to be the case -- either with the people complaining or the museum's intentions, of course, I don't really see how this is racist. If a Japanese person had been dispatched to promote 'cool Japan' and do this kind of thing people would be nuts about it as it might be an interesting chance to experience some Japanese culture (trying on kimono).

In any case, it WAS perceived as racist, and the museum has acted on it, so that's about the best you can hope for until some better way of going about it is suggested.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

I imagine if Debito were an Asian American...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yet another victory for the professionally outraged.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Here in the US people will complain about anything and or say something is racist. If I read this article right it said it was "Museum goers were ENCOURAGED (not forced) to don the traditional Japanese garments and pose in front of Claude Monet’s “La Japonaise.” They have/ had a choice to to put it on or not. What has the US turned into?!?!?! There are times that I'm really ashamed to call myself American because of the few that make it out to be that ALL Americans are racist. It's ALL about people not wanting to except anything but their own views. We ALL should have PRIDE in OURSELVES to encourage/ embrace the cultures of the world.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I agree with earlier posts that the kimono event wasn't racist. The protests were just another example of rampant PC that's currently sweeping across the US.

Here's a link to a "Japanese-American In Boston" blog which provides an in-depth look at the handful of protesters and the MFA kimono presentation: http://japaneseamericaninboston.blogspot.com/2015/07/monets-la-japonaise-kimono-wednesdays.html

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Took a peek at a couple other sites & the info is similar to here, I cant tell if these twits have a problem with the kimono & people wearing them or if its the painting itself(with a white woman in a blonde wig) or is it both??!!??!?

All seems pretty daft to me, tried reading one of their signs but cant make out the smaller print, they seem to have protested at the wrong venue/event for this supposed racism BIZARRE!!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I bet actual racists are rubbing their hands with glee at stories like this. They love to play the 'PC gone mad' card.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

With respect, I am severely offended by being denied the opportunity to learn more about Kimono and its designs. Being labeled a bigot for wanting to enrich my knowledge of Japanese culture is far more offensive then they can ever understand.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

If a Japanese person had been dispatched to promote 'cool Japan' and do this kind of thing people would be nuts about it as it might be an interesting chance to experience some Japanese culture (trying on kimono).

It was NHK that provided the kimono, apparently.

The kimonos, which are replicas of the garment in the painting, were commissioned by the Japanese broadcaster NHK to accompany “La Japonaise” for the recent traveling exhibit “Looking East”; visitors to museums in Tokyo, Kyoto, and the MFA’s sister museum in Nagoya could try them on as part of the exhibit.

https://www.bostonglobe.com/lifestyle/style/2015/07/07/mfa-backs-down-over-kimono-event-response-protests/lv9NHcnpW0lsRE77d9hvkI/story.html

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I bet actual racists are rubbing their hands with glee at stories like this. They love to play the 'PC gone mad' card.

I'm sure you're right. Unfortunately, it's giving them ammo, as this is most definitely PC gone mad.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

"The idiots are winning"

6 ( +8 / -2 )

So, if an Asian (or some non-white) goes to lets say, Tombstone, and they dress up as a cowboy, would that be racist, too? There are many places that allow to take memorable photos at a local tourist sites. Imagine the outrage if the photographer would refuse to take a picture of an Asian, dressed as a cowboy, in Tombstone, because it is racist.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@tonttu2012 The kimono in question does not seem to be an ordinary type of kimono, but one worn by a courtesan. I think this issue should be discussed from a feminist point of view rather than a racist one.

Right, I wonder why they put on Western Courtesan in the picture to put on event "Kimono Wednesday"? Why not Japanese woman in Kimono or picture of kimono that come from Japan?

@virgo98 Japanese would never call this event at the museum "racism", as we have a pride in our culture and are very grateful if people of other countries take interest in it. There might be some mistakes or preconceived ideas, but still, having an interest in something is the first step to understand it.

Even they put courtesan in kimono and said "this is Kimono" is alright? It's like insulting or just me being sensitive.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Whilst I confess to finding the sight of a Westerner wearing a kimono rather comical (I don't know why, it just is!) there is hardly anything "imperialistic" about it.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@peace_zzz

I'm not a specialist, but this kimono seems to have too gorgeous or showy patterns, not like Japanese traditional patterns.

I first saw the painting when I was a school kid, and thought it might be a souvenior kimono for foreigners, or made for exports. There was a similar case for chinaware made in Japan.

There were high-class courtesan called "Oiran" in Japan before Meiji period, and the girls wore very gorgeous kimonos. This might be one of them, and someone might have brought back to France. Then, it should be described accordingly.

Nevertheless, it is not insulting at all. Because it is the history. If there is any misunderstanding or incorrectness, it would be presure for Japanese specialists to provide the information. That's all.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

WHat the hell is racist about that event? Political Correctness is really running berserk in that country.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Museums are suppose to represent cultural diversity. There is nothing racist about wearing a Kimono while learning about the history of Japanese culture. I believe by wearing the clothes of other cultures it will enhance the experience of the learner.

I just don't understand the concept of calling an opportunity to wear such clothing racist. I visited a Japanese war museum and they had on display a chance to wear samurai armor and gear (complete with helmet). I was the ONLY foreigner in the museum. Most of the Japanese people encouraged me to try on the gear because of how fascinated I was. I tried it on. No racism here. Just made me appreciate Japanese culture even more (boy that armour gear was heavy)

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Political correctness is holding the world to ransom

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Burakumin

Whilst I confess to finding the sight of a Westerner wearing a kimono rather comical....

Know what you mean. I got married in a hakama. When I see a photo of that happy event, I cringe....

What a tool.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The museum said it had hoped to create an “interactive experience,” helping museum goers appreciate the rich details, embroidery and fine materials of the garments. It said similar events took place when the painting, depicting a woman in a kimono, travelled throughout Japan for an exhibition.

If the museum display showed a map of Japan and the areas where the kimono's came from, then it is not racist or imperialistic. It is simply a display named after a specific manner of dress from a specific Asian country. If they showed a map of all of Asia as representing the kimono, it's not racist, but just stupid on the part of the museum on not being able to pinpoint where the kimono's come from.

But overall, this is just another "perceived insult" that some groups keep peddling to keep themselves relevant. I can't see anything wrong with the name and the intent of the event. The museum should stand fast and hold their ground. Their job is to enlighten and educate the public, not cower because a few who don't know much about the world except to be eternally "PO'ed" about something makes a loud noise.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Sorry, I made a typical Japanese mistake. Please read pleasure instead of presure.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

When I went to Osaka Castle, I had a good time putting on a samurai outfit and posing with my non Japanese friends. And a good time was had by all. Because dressing up is something we all enjoy from the time we are children. Especially in Japan, cosplay is popular even among adults!

So..... is it also racist to wear a ninja costume on Halloween? Go home protesters.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The kimono in question does not seem to be an ordinary type of kimono, but one worn by a courtesan.

It's uchikake, once worn by ladies in high-ranked samurai families and now seen only at weddings or on the stage.

Nothing to do with courtesans as far as I can see.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Dont cringe lucabrasi! There are a significant number of us that think men in hakama look hot! :)

1 ( +1 / -0 )

****THE IGNORANCE RUNS RAMPANT!!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Whats wrong with people? some people are narrow minded, blinkered morons, whats wrong with showing of the artefacts and wears of another country? they are not promoting war related items, nor are they promoting imperialism just the cultural aspects of another country, so is every museum going to stop showing any artefact from any country because its raciest? how stupid can people get? it seams that some people don't want any cultural enrichment. its a shame because I would gone and had a look. if you don't want to look why stop other people looking?.....narrow minded morons!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

There is a certain delightful irony to a protest against cultural insensitivity that is itself culturally insensitive.

There must be a word in the English language to express that? Hypocrisy of course, but it is so much more than that.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Thanks Nathalie. But no... : (

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Most of the time I wear the American national costume. Shorts and T-shirts or jeans and T-shirts but I also enjoy at times wearing a full kimono dress or a Yukata at a ryokan or visit to an onsen town like Arima. Kimonos never really go out of style which is good considering the prices, especially for women.

Back in home country at art uni I made several "art" kimonos and displayed on a catwalk show. I love the simple shapes and the large "canvas area" which become a painting in their own right.

Sometimes I wear denim Happi coats. Winter time indoors I like the padded jackets or Hantens.

Boston could try a Samba night, always a big hit in my hood.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

A different take on the "Offended White male"; "Offended American with asian roots." A Kimono exhibition is "racist and imperialistic". Really. Really? There are WWII exhibitions with Nazi uniforms, symbols and things and jews don't get offended because it's part of history - same as kimono is a part of a countries history and Culture, you damn fruitcakes.

You know who else wanted to censor History and Culture? Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot ... There's you Political Correctness.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Maybe need more info, but this is preposterous.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

As a courtesan in good standing, this cancellation offends me.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

peace_zzzJul. 09, 2015 - 01:31PM JST

@tonttu2012 The kimono in question does not seem to be an ordinary type of kimono, but one worn by a courtesan. I think this issue should be discussed from a feminist point of view rather than a racist one.

Right, I wonder why they put on Western Courtesan in the picture to put on event "Kimono Wednesday"?

The model in Komono was the artist's wife, not a courtesan. http://japaneseamericaninboston.blogspot.jp/2015/07/monets-la-japonaise-kimono-wednesdays.html

Monet's first wife, Camille, was the model for the painting and sported an uchikake, a type of formal kimono.

BBC reports. http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-trending-33450391

Amnes Siyuan, one of the protest's organisers, said: "A bunch of people tried to prove that they were not racist. That was not the point. We wanted to talk about why this event is cultural appropriation."

Christiana Wang, another protester, said Asian Americans tend to be underrepresented and are forced into certain categories, such as the geisha or the quiet student.

I think the protesters lack understanding of Kimono and Japanese culture. What does the painting have to do with geisha? I do not think the Kimono Wednesday is a racist event at all.

Siyuan and Wang should learn Japanese culture before organizing a protest.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Is it any surprise that of the 5 people organizing the protester's Facebook page and every person interviewed about the protests, not one is Japanese?

8 ( +8 / -0 )

OMFG! Sophia University had Yukata Day this week. Why do we have to wake up every morning looking for something to be offended about??? UGH!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Japanese would never call this event at the museum "racism",

True, because Japanese have a hard time understanding what racism is in the first place, seeing as how everything is either Japanese or "gaikoku".

To understand what racism is Japanese have to understand that there is more to the world then "us" vs "them".

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Photo of protestor

May I slap him upside the head? Dude looks too young to even know wtf he is protesting about. Maybe from North Korea perhaps? (Like brain-washed......)

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Imagine the usual PC "merchant bankers" were responsible for the protest. I had the privilige of having the kimono demonstrated to me years ago by a Japanese friend, and I find it hard to believe that a modern Japanese would mind it being done by Western women; find it mildly amusing perhaps, but not much more. And if, as one of the contributions to this discussion suggested, the protesters were mainly Korean Americans, then it's none of their business. I am reminded of a protest by similar people here in Australia about the insistence of kindergarten teachers in celebrating Christmas despite many children attending being Muslims, and presuming the Muslims would object. They didn't; in fact they said they didn't mind at all. The too-sensitive Western world needs to address this issue of vociferous minorities more robustly. The Swiss referendum system would be very appropriate; about 360 in 100+ years, and only one not ratified by the Government. Now THAT'S real democracy!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@zichi:Photo of protestor

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CI3Qr4KWEAAnM8H.jpg

Thanks for the photo of the protestor. The curator should frame it and entitle it, "The Grievance Industry on Display"

3 ( +3 / -0 )

That event was cancelled because of one or a few morons?! With thought process like that.....nothing will be held anymore from birthday's to Christmas because 'it offends someone'. So sick of these just jerks, destroying entire cultures and the cowards that keep caving in to them.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Why does an art museum allow itself to be censored by a small handful of people who don't even know what they are talking about? A small number destroying the innocent pleasure of thousands.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

I'm generally for PC and will support it even when it might seem to go overboard. When I was a child we had no PC. Though I was repeatedly bullied because of my ethnicity my elementary school did nothing about it. Only the principal did something: He admonished me to always be polite. Really.

I am all for PC but this vile assault on the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston over "Kimono Wednesday" I find stupid and racist. This is not PC. It is a pack of creeps being vociferous because of Black, Brown, White and probably non-Japanese / Japanese-Americans trying on Kimono. Again, this is not PC but the lowest racism you probably wouldn't get from even the most rabid ultranationalist in Japan.

What Monet showed in his famous painting is that the kimono is beautiful no matter who wears it. This something I know from living here in Japan. The kimono is part of my everyday life. I've worn a ceremonial kimono on various occasions. No one thought it weird or racist.

MFA Boston should not have caved into these ignorant and racist scumbags.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

...now if it were sniper gear instead of Kimono...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Kimono looks pretty with those fancy patterns. When you view it, view it as art. There is something totally wrong with people today. Then, again, I have also read that some place people wants to cover up the Statue of David for reason of indecency. - they better never travel to Rome.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Seems like these non-Japanese protesters "appropriated" Japanese.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

lucabrasi: because the outfits they buy are plastic hats and polyester green jackets. Surely thats much more offensive than good quality kimonos.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@zichi. LoL, good pic. Did you see that guy's pants? Where's the flood?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

It seems the organizers were two Chinese and an Indian (Amnes Siyuan, Christiana Wang and Aparna "Pampi" Das).

They seem oblivious to the fact they were appropriating Japanese culture in a stroke of Liberal Imperialism.

Can they organize a Facebook page against Japanese businessmen being made to go "White Face" by wearing Western business suits now?

This is where I think the Japanese government is too weak and slow about not speaking up about such misrepresentation.

A more subtle and concerning undertone is the creation and misappropriation of "Asian-American" as a collective term.

For me, the term itself if root in American racism and inability to tell quite separate and different cultures apart, the "Asian Babe" syndrome. It's a kind of stupidity and laziness.

Not surprisingly, Japanese-American tend to keep out such discourses, the activists tending to Chinese and Korean. I, personally, would not be happy at being bundled in as a singular collective.

I suppose it is following the dynamics of the LGBT lobby whose leaders seem to keep adding yet another initial every year to increase their power and influence?

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

The protesters are clearly either mentally deranged or promoting a marxist agenda.

The museum should have told them to GoFuku themselves.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

It seems like it was an "art piece" and self-promotion.

Aparna (Pampi) Das is the digital mixed media performance artist and poet at thirdeyefell.com. While her forte is in pen and ink, she enjoys experimenting with video, poetry, movement and song. In her work she engages issues of identity, gender, sexuality and the body politic. Pampi is passionate about being engaged in arts education as a tool for exploring social justice concerns and building sustainable community through affirmative messaging. She has taught dance, fashion design and other forms of art in the greater Boston area. Pampi is also Artistic Director at alpoarrentao Productions, an art event organization in Greater Boston that commissions original art from local artists, explores relevant socio-political themes and strives to deepen relationships between audience and artist. She earned her BS in Art & Design from MIT.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

I recently read that Japan would like its culture to be promoted more in other countries so here we are trying & some ignorant people get offended. We need to stop wasting time are trying to be 100% PC compliant & get on with life.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japan is happy if people wear Kimonos (but please wear them properly otherwise you'll be swamped by bossy old ladies instructing you how to).

Yukatas would have been a better bet.

This is one of most confused and silliest Japan related protests I have read of yet, and it's a shame it's non-Japanese bringing Japan into shame and embarrassment.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

A more subtle and concerning undertone is the creation and misappropriation of "Asian-American" as a collective term.

Why? Cause they erected statues of "comfort women" in their communities to teach the world.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

You can't win with these people. We are white, therefore we are racist by birth and if we protest that insulting label we are suffering with "white fragility".

These people aren't Japanese, have no interest in Japan, and are hijacking this issue to push their own flawed agenda that they actually don't really seem to understand themselves. Nowhere on the site is there any kind of reasonable explanation as to what their issues are, they just keep bandying around tired old catchphrases such as "cultural appropriation" and "systematic oppression". And it seems from the group different individuals are complaining about different things in different threads, so they don't even have a cohesiant argument.

In summary - they are a group of spoilers who have ruined it for everyone for their 15 minutes of fame under the guise of - and this is laughable - intellectualism. Shame. I say don't feed the monsters and move on.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

One of these days an organization will get smart and stand up to STUPIDITY and IGNORANCE!.. It's ART! As powerful at the United States is, we are still way behind a lot of other countries when it comes to the Cultural aspect of life! Why are we SO IGNORANT?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Utterly ridiculous. Part of me wonders if there's latent anti-Japanese sentiment motivating some of the protesters - i.e. they're annoyed people are drawing attention to Japanese cultural items like kimono - and justifying it by saying the museum has been "racist".

At best the protesters are racist in as far that they're campaigning for people (Japanese/American-Japanese) who don't seem to be offended by anything.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Yes Shumatsu - but then if you point that out to them they then claim it is "nothing to do with Japan or Japanese" and it is all about Asian Americans and their longstanding oppression in general! SMH! One of them doesnt even live in America and honestly from some of her comments I seriously doubt she is even Asian - but shes having a whale of a time calling everyone who disagrees with her a troll!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

There is a facebook group in support of it... https://www.facebook.com/groups/1141781712515378/

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Nowadays, peoples are protesting on everything even though they can't explain themselves for what they are doing especially left wing activists in the West. I really wanted to ask protestors about their view on dressing Kimono. How come dressing in Kimono and posing front of Claude Monet’s “La Japonaise” painting becoming “racist” and “imperialist"

Here, one Museum visitor talks about protestors. “They’re obviously here to make a point,” said Katelin Hardy, who arrived at the MFA last week intending to try on a kimono. After speaking at length with the protesters, however, she decided to forgo the opportunity, even if she wasn’t “quite sure” about their objections.

“They said everyone was racist,” said Hardy. “Maybe there needs to be a little more context to it, but by the time I was done, we were leaving, and I just couldn’t.”

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Ok - that's it! Next St. Patrick's Day I'm gonna ask my friends from Cork to meet me at the Boston museum to protest the fact they caved in to this nonsense! I'll ask them to bring their favorite red & white flags that they use to cheer on their local football club with while I dress up in my favorite kimono (believe it or not, it's got the Lone Star Flag designed on it) and impersonate John Belushi's character from the Saturday Night Live skit!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I live about 50 min away from that museum. I would have loved to try on a kimono. I never heard about it or the protests.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

What insanity. If these Japanese or asians or whoever are ashamed of their heritage, then they have a problem not the people who are trying to point out the artistry of the Kimono. The museum should have told these protesters to stick their protest where the sun doesn't shine and continued their Kimono Wednesdays, which were about as far from being racists and imperialist as the east is from the west. Kimonos are beautiful works of art in cloth. To call a western person racists because they don one is about the stupidest thing I have ever heard of. These people need to get a life.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Our group has managed to take down their Facebook page. If anyone else is willing to join the cause and get the kimono back on display and available for wearing please join. Link is above.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The article fails to mention WHO the protesters were or WHY they thought Kimono Wednesdays were racist. Saying that it was imperialistic or yellow face isn't enough. What part of it is imperialist or racist?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yubaru, you said it! We seem to live in a world now where everyone (lady or not) "doth protest too much"!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I'm just glad the museum hadn't decided to feature Renoir's The Bathers. Now that would have been horrible.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Just do it anyway. Ignore the protesters. They will find another cause to rally against in a few days

3 ( +3 / -0 )

If these Japanese or asians or whoever are ashamed of their heritage -

They don't know their heritage and that is the problem.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The "imperialist" term betrays the ethnic background of the (3) protestors. This wasn't a protest over the "orientalism" (ridiculous term) in "dressing up as asians", but over displaying Japanese culture. Simple as that.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Who expected Boston to be hospitiable?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Wc626J

A more subtle and concerning undertone is the creation and misappropriation of "Asian-American" as a collective term.

Why? Cause they erected statues of "comfort women" in their communities to teach the world.

No, those are the Korean-Americans.

With apologies to reasonable, sensitive and informed Americans, the term "Asians" or "Asian-Americans" appears to be used mainly at a popular level to describe "Yellow" people that the White individuals using it are too lazy, too stupid or too disinterested to identify properly, as in "Asian Babe".

I would say the collective politicization of it is quite recent and, largely, it is dominated by Chinese and Korean interests. This is the first time I have seen a Bengali (Indian) extending the use of it to cover "Brown" people.

Am I the only one who finds it far too broad and inaccurate ... given the broad differences in the different ethnic groups with little in common ... and problematic given the divisions being created and exploited internationally, e.g. the Korean's campaign with the statutes of war time prostitutes.

Generally, Japanese-Americans do not involve themselves in such things, keep to themselves.

Here we have two Chinese and an Indian claiming right over a non-racially exclusive Japanese heritage, and even going as far as to include Samoans and Maori in their cultural bundle?

Imagine the noise if Japanese has usurped a Korea or Chinese exhibition!

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

too stupid or too disinterested to identify properly

Oh, so are you also implying this same "stupid" logic to how all japanese consider a gaijin a "gaijin"? No matter what corner othe earth they're from? Remarkable-

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

No, that does not work. Gaikokujin just means foreigners. All foreigners.

These are all Americans.

Often what is happening in such situations is that an individual or small group is defining a wholly artificial collective concept in order to build a political power base for themselves.

Is there any Pan-Asian Organization or "Asian caucus" in the USA? Or can anyone just set themselves up as spokespersons for "all Asians"? For example, look at Mike Honda's political positioning of himself as Asian-American rather than Japanese-American (which would have been suicidal politically and financially).

I read over these individuals' manifesto. It's too long and borders on a crazy person's rant.

From an artistic point of view, I think they also fail to appreciate how much of a revolution Japanese art and culture caused in Europe, and that only from the cheap woodcut prints that ceramics were sent in.

And were are they going to draw the border of "Asia", all the way from Turkey to Vladivostok?

I think the paradox is, they are more guilty of selfish, imperialistic cultural appropriation, whilst the Museum is giving people a hands on experience of it to others who may well have never had the chance to do so.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

No, that does not work. Gaikokujin just means foreigners. All foreigners

Just so you know- there IS the derogatory term "gaijin" used in japan. Politically correct = Gaikokujin, as you've mentioned.

From an artistic point of view, I think they also fail to appreciate how much of a revolution Japanese art and culture caused in Europe

Oh yeah, I forgot. During the Meiji Period, thousands of europeans and potential scholars went to Japan to grasp their advancements in ceramics, forepkay and cheap Ukiyo-e. . . . Nice try Lucy-

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Actually I was merely thinking about the influence via Van Gogh, and then Manet, Degas and Monet following him.

Consider the influence upon modern art they had collectively, and it was not even high Japanese art.

Van Gogh wrote, "All my work is based to some extent on Japanese art".

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

I apologise, I have not read previous posts/commments, so sorry if I repeat anyone:

Racial maybe, imperial maybe, but the use of 'ist'? Complainers, check your dictionary please!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I'm glad everyone knows that the protesters are not Japanese or Japanese descendents.

I think this is a good video describing what Japanese think about foreigners wearing Kimono.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kwoSYWIgV9Y

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Get a sense of humor, Japanese friends! Next thing you know, "The Mikado" will be Banned in Boston.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

I think the protesters were mostly disliking the Japanese Kimono and just tacked racist onto it because they knew it would motivate white liberals who feel guilty about everything...

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Get a sense of humor, Japanese friends! Next thing you know, "The Mikado" will be Banned in Boston.

None of the protestors were Japanese! Thats the whole point! They were a bunch of bored post-doc sociology / art students trying to make a name for themselves.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Well said, Nathalie.

Not too sure about the slur against artie students, though. I'm one myself ; )

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Obviously protests were by overly zealous Asian-American feminist grad school student types. Pretty run of mill especially at an academic town like Boston. But this is real racist comment: "YuriOtaniJUL. 09, 2015 - 07:26AM I think the protestors were Korean." Maybe they were, maybe they were Chinese-Am but dragging in racist assumptions is the real racism to be noted here.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

But protesters have held signs at the Boston museum’s events, calling them “racist” and “imperialist.”

The museum says kimonos will now be on display Wednesday evenings for visitors to touch, not try on.

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

Those kimonos were not imperial people's wears, juni hitoe, Not even samrai;s. Just commoners;, Japanese do not talk but they know kimonos in issue is not imperial, Also Japan is not race.

Some people noise about race that Nevada projibited to use Oriental, Asian is OK/ So we have to tell either made in Japan or made in /china carpet, BTW in Nevada, there were only black and white and I was white for a while. My new state Id does not have race so I am no longer white. Check your State

0 ( +0 / -0 )

If they were protesting Kimono sewing abuse Japanese women, I might believe they are Japanese women, but .....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I don't know how Girls HS do now but in my time. Kimono sewing was a 5 hrs a week we had to practice hand sewing at home. My father gave me Singer but step was for adult. So I used old pillow that had wooden box under amall pillow that was no longer used as no one go under floor to try to kill sleeping people. So i tied pillow with sash and I used Singer to make Kimono assignment. Some of my classmates later owned Kimono stores.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It's racist because the Korean and Chinese protesters hate Japanese so they don't want to see a spread of Japanese culture

1 ( +2 / -1 )

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2015/07/08/world/cries-racism-prompt-boston-art-museum-cancel-kimono-wednesdays/#.VaL_1V-qqkp

A link to the Japan Times article with a photo of some of the protesters.

I think it's awfully presumptuous of them to speak for the people of Japan with no input from the Japanese themselves. An early article on the flap gave me the impression that at least some of the protesters were Japanese, that turned out not to be the case,

1 ( +1 / -0 )

If the museum handed out bamboo hats, thick glasses, and a Nikon to wear around your neck, now that would be racist.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

To me... the protesters sound like a bunch of idiots. Were they even Japanese? Do they even know how the average Japanese citizen feels about it? Everyone I know would have no problem with Kimono's being worn to increase awareness in fine fabrics. The museum should re-instate Kimonos and tell the protesters to shove it.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Leave it to America.....

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

This is what happened when everything was left to America.

Americans of Chinese and Indian ancestry are protesting against an American museum for cultural imperialism for something that is nothing to do with cultural imperialism. It looks the museum needs some help.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

The Museum of Fine Arts Boston is cancelling “Kimono Wednesdays” after protesters decried the event as racis.

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

Pretty soon they sill protest sushi and fortune cookies as racist/

Is Boston museum public or private institution? Anyone know?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

All this PC BS. Sorry. Voices not heard? I'd like to see who really is behind these accusations. A great friend of mine married a Japanese precisely because she was in kimono the first time they met. As I see it, people purposefully are out to create confusion. Actually, it's precisely this PC junk that creates confusion, reverse psychology.

Let the girls put on their kimono. They're quite pretty.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

By putting on a kimono you are going "Yellowface"? This has GOT to be a joke.

I refuse to accept that these protesters are real.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

There were only two rypes of linens silk and cotton Later artifitial Jonken Way later nylon

men and women wear kimonp differently Men hidari mae. place kimono front left. Female front right side

In summer Yukata. In winter Waraire. that has three layers of cotton wata and cotton sewn.

When I came to Univ in So Calif I troed Yellow for race but school decided Californian. Too many letters in Mongorian. And LA times above indicate Asian not Oriental

Ar lwast in Boston, women do not wear kimono like men and men do not wear like women,

0 ( +0 / -0 )

For those of you not schooled in the US and not familiar with feminist critical theory, there is a history in American popular culture and media where ASIAN WOMEN are objectified and fetishized as being subservient, exotic and sexualized. This has profound implications in how Asian women are portrayed, treated, oppressed, victimized. Feminists and Asian American feminists would not be ok with cartoon characters with 8 year old features being portrayed with hyper exaggerated sexual features. These women were probably saw the museum portraying an early fetishization of Asian women and culture by having museum goers dress up and reenact the fetishization. You can argue that it's acceptable and there is a sense of naivety when MOnet did it but it's not ok in 2015. This is not my position, I'm just giving you a possible reason for why these women were protesting. Seems like a lot of you never learned feminist theories and are making racist comments about Koreans and Chinese instead. Nippon Ganbare.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

I guess that means I can't wear my judogi anymore.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@melon: Majority of Asian women usually graduated from Univ/ Even old woman like me.

You think Asian children never attend elementary school?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sorry lucabrasi! Not lumping you all in the same boat! :)

These women were probably saw the museum portraying an early fetishization of Asian women and culture by having museum goers dress up and reenact the fetishization

Yes, they may well have done. Still doesn't give them the right to speak for Japanese and/or shut down the whole event though, thereby preventing ANYONE from learning something and experiencing something of Japanese culture. Maybe - just maybe - people could have seen the painting, experienced the kimono, and figured out for themselves that this was orientalism at the time and degrading towards Asian women thereby HELPING these SJW's cause - but they'll never get the chance now, will they?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Nathan excellent comment.

But ptotesting people are not insulting Japanese women like above comment of melon barn as if he is rejected half gay.'

Back to topic, touching kimono by many hands is not recommended. When my mother presented me washing machine a long time ago, I washed my about 200 years old kimonos and ruined. I told my teacher to instruct my classmates to tell their mothers not to wash kimonos or any silk attires. You can not use Dryer either.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

some people need to chill out,

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Sir; the protests are very childish and do not deserve recognition !

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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