So apparently ‘Slave Earrings’ are en vogue these days.

It seems like advertisers just can’t get it right. From Summer’s Eve misguided “All Hail the V” campaign, to McDonald’s hip-hop inspired commercials, it when some companies target minorities they end up drowning in stereotypes. Now…we can add Vogue to the list of brands who missed the effin’ point.

The venerable magazine is no stranger to controversy. French Vogue famously styled White models in blackface, and its American counterpart likened LeBron James to King Kong.The ‘Fashion Bible’ isn’t adverse to pushing limits, but Vogue Italia, known for it’s “Black Issue” and continuous use of Black models from around the world, has been a welcomed reprieve from the white-washed fashion industry…until now.

Earlier this month, Vogue Italia ran an article touting a new trend—‘Slave earrings.’

If you’re like me and have absolutely NO clue what ‘Slave Earrings’ are, Vogue Italia described them:


After seeing Dr. Goddess tweet Dawnavette‘s blog post about the earrings, I did a little research. Apparently ‘Slave earrings’ aren’t as rare as we might think (or hope).

According to my search, ‘Slave Earrings’ stem from the punk rock movement and typically “include a stud worn at the ear lobe, and an attached chain that goes to the top of the ear by way of a second piercing or cuff, are known as slave earrings, or multiple-piercing earrings.”

Although the earrings touted by Vogue Italia do not include chains, the mention of women of color speaks to their knowledge of how the description of these earrings may affect Black women. The fact that the writer thought the name ‘Slave earrings’ would make us think about the “traditions” of women of color rather than how slaves in America were treated is beyond offensive.

Whoever thought THIS was a good idea needs to be schooled in the seriousness of slavery, because last time I checked, there isn’t anything fashionable or trendy about it.

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