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Thursday, February 02, 2006

The Trivialization of Indigenous Peoples' Liberation

The most significant recent development in the contemporary movement for indigenous peoples' liberation was the election last month of Evo Morales to the presidency of Bolivia. Morales' election could create an example and a model that advances hope for a freer future for all indigenous peoples. In typical fashion (no pun intended), the invader-society media marginalize and diminish the importance of the struggles of Native peoples. Below is the latest example from today's New York Times. The Times ignores Morales' message, diminishes his critique of globalization, brushes aside the resonance of his optimistic call for liberation for all oppressed people. Caring about the substance of liberation is too boring, insists the Times. Let us all, instead, focus on ... Morales' sweater.

The New York Times
February 2, 2006
The Fashion of the Populist

By JUAN FORERO
LA PAZ, Bolivia

EVO MORALES, the new president of this remote, often-overlooked country high in the Andes, is known as the leader of a powerful indigenous movement, a fiery street agitator and former coca farmer who in the coming months may challenge the United States on subjects like the drug war and globalization.

Lately, though, it is not just Mr. Morales's oratory or policies that are getting attention, but his clothing, especially the multistriped sweater he wore to meet world leaders last month during a tour of Madrid, Beijing and beyond, before his inauguration on Jan. 22. Copies of the sweater are flying off the shelves in La Paz, the capital, at $10 each.

Images of Bolivia's first indigenous president adorn T-shirts and flags, an online Bolivian store called BoliviaMall.com is selling striped sweaters worldwide, and reporters from Madrid to Mexico City are writing about Evo Morales as a fashion symbol.

"This week a new front-runner has emerged in the men's wear style stakes," The Guardian in Britain declared in a fashion article shortly before Mr. Morales's inauguration. "Evo Morales, president-elect of Bolivia, has been rigorously working what is known in the world of fashion as a 'signature look.' "

The question is: Will Mr. Morales, a strapping Aymara Indian with a Roman nose, an infectious smile and a shock of long black hair, catch on as a durable fashion influence?

2 Comments:

At 3:26 PM, Blogger Bill See31 WannabeTribe said...

What is a trivialization to Indigenous Peoples' Liberation is your continued support to fraud of all frauds Ward Churchill. He trivilizes Indigenous Peoples opression by laying claim to our poverty and struggle and profiting off it.

 
At 7:14 AM, Blogger split tongue-ster said...

fraud is when you enslave people to your profit without regard to the health of all

 

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