Kanye West’s Confederate Heritage

Kanye WestNo, it’s not a new Dixie Outfitters design for the bad-ass biker in you that wants to show off your Confederate pride. In fact, it’s a t-shirt design for Kanye West’s Yeezus Tour. West’s publicity team is marketing a number of times that features the Confederate flag.

This is not the first time that African Americans have appropriated the flag for their own use. A Confederate flag draped over the grim reaper is quite suggestive. Perhaps it symbolizes the death of the Confederacy and racism. I have no idea.

It’s encouraging to think that young black and white Americans, who purchase this shirt will help to blur to the point of non-recognition the history of this flag’s connection to a failed revolution to perpetuate slavery and history of racism and violence.

In other words, they will flag it into oblivion.

11 comments… add one

  • Pat Young Oct 20, 2013

    Any number of cartoons and paintings have associated Nazi symbols with death. This one for example:
    http://ecatalogue.art.yale.edu/detail.htm?objectId=33863

    The are not saying that Nazism is dead, but rather that the Nazis equal death.

  • Al Mackey Oct 20, 2013

    To me, it evokes the message that the confederacy was evil, that it did the work of death, that it was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands, if not over a million people.

    • Kevin Levin Oct 20, 2013

      The more interesting questions what it means to Kanye’s audience.

  • William Underhill Oct 21, 2013

    Kevin,

    This is a reading of a short story by Percival Everett called The Appropriation of Cultures. It is read by the actor, director Reuben Santiago Hudson.
    With the continuing controversy of flying or displaying the Confederate flag, this story will tickle your funny bone. It lasts about 20 minutes.
    Listen to it and it will be the best 20 minutes you’ve spent in a long while.

    http://vfp143.org/pod/FLAG.mp3

  • Sir Oct 21, 2013

    ” the history of this flag’s connection . . . . to perpetuate slavery and history of racism and violence” Yawn. People have, and continue to do so, said the exact same thing about the U.S. flag. It amazes me that Union generals and soldiers could be more gracious to the motives of Confederates than some blogger 150 years later…….

  • Andy Hall Oct 21, 2013

    I dropped Confederate skeleton tattoo into a search engine, and came up with multiple photos of that image above. So it’s not an original design, and maybe some ink artiste will get a tidy settlement by threatening a lawsuit over it.

    Also heard somewhere that Bobby Lee had one just like it, but I’m skeptical on that point.

    • Pat Young Oct 21, 2013

      Since the tat is not visible in any photo of Lee, any idea what concealed body part it is on?

  • Mike Tuggle Oct 21, 2013

    Google Uncle Sam skeleton, and you’ll see images of the real exporter of mass murder and chaos in the world today.

  • William Oct 25, 2013

    But the flag is soooooooooo offensive to African-Americans………Unless they can make money from it ?

    • Ben Allen Oct 27, 2013

      No, Kanye seems to be just as offended by the flag as any other African American. That’s why he clothed death in it.

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