H&M Print Ads Gets a Side Eye From the Black Community

Community, Fashion Off 21

I didn’t think so early in the year we would have a racial controversy in the fashion industry, but since Trump is in office, what else do you expect.

Over the weekend, H&M was in the middle of some intense controversy, as pictures from their recent promo ad in the UK circulated on Facebook and other social media platforms. In the ad, a black child is wearing a hoodie with the saying “Coolest Monkey in the Jungle”. Many who saw the ad were furious and took offense to it. People were outrage due to the fact that a boy of African descent was put in a hoodie that has a strong correlation with the mistreatment and racism in America. For those who aren’t familiar with this, the monkey is often associated with black people; many people have used monkies to depict black people and has used the animal to form racial slurs such as “porch monkey”.

Since the controversy, H&M has released an apology, removed the image from their website, and has discontinued the product. Music superstar The Weeknd has cut ties with the clothing brand due to this ad, and announced it on Twitter, along with his dismay for the ad. This isn’t the first-time H&M has been in heat for racially motivated ads. A few years ago, H&M was confronted when their South Africa store didn’t feature any African models in their displays.


Tell us, do you think this H&M advertisement was intentionally racist or was it a mistake the company should learn and grow from? Comment below!

About the author / 

Kelsey Stone

Chicago native with a passion for writing, music, and social justice. Creative, intelligent, and bold, but can be a little sophistaratchet sometimes.

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