Sunday, October 23, 2011

Diesel Brand: The modern colonizers?

Appropriation: To take over goods, resources, knowledge and ideas.

Diesel, the Italian brand clothing company aren't killing Natives. They're just buying them. 

In their ad campaign for "Diesel Island", they use appropriation of colonialism through humour to mock the history of murder and inhumane acts toward Indigenous individuals. 

We've seen ads that were just ridiculous. And most times, we skim through these ads and pay it no mind. This doesn't excuse the advertisers, companies, designers etc. to advertise whatever they like behind the protective wall of humour.

Ad reads: "Instead of conquering and island and KILLING NATIVES, we decided to
simply buy it. (Besides, have you seen the price of weapons these days?)"

Apparently, theft of an island is still the okay thing to do. ... Really? 

This may not seem like much of a controversy to a lot of you who many not have a background in Colonialism or marginalization for that matter. But think of it this way for example:

If you're black: Imagine if this ad read, "Instead of supporting slavery or lynching black people to reinforce our position of power, we decided to simply buy your 'blackness'. Besides, have you seen the price of slaves lately?"

If you're a woman: Imagine if this ad read, "Instead of using rape as a weapon and sexually assaulting any women we please, we decided to simply buy your sexual objectivity and strengthen the power dynamic. Besides, have you seen the price of weapons lately?"

If you're LGBTQ: Imagine if this ad read, "Instead of cyber/bullying the LGBTQ community, we decided to simple buy your gayness. Besides, have you seen the price of emotional distress from suicidal attempts in lawsuits lately?"

...Hit closer to home yet?

The above ad is a portion of the message that Diesel is sending: "We're not killing natives... no no that's bad. But we're gonna make fun of it, and simultaneously using our economic status we're gonna buy it. We're gonna use privilege through hegemony and make light of our history as colonizers and commodify it. This way, everyone is happy. You are entertained, the Indigenous people won't know... and we make money."

If we analyze the above ad, Diesel labels colonizers as "pioneers" that were seeking refuge. The attempt at appropriating through humour is right there---> "...and reality shows". 

The above ad here shows a couple that look like their taking a couples vacation on Indigenous land. Tourism has become the new Colonialism. Diesel are the modern colonizers.

"Land of the stupid, Home of the brave" ????? (Does "Home of the brave" sound familiar to you...?)
Land of the stupid refers to the Indigenous people... and that exact land became "home" to the so-called "brave".

Get it? No?

It's okay. I'll wait.

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