It looks like Prada has quickly come to its collective senses. The Italian fashion house says it will eliminate certain accessories from stock following highly critical accusations that figurines and other merchandise perpetuate blackface imagery.
The major label faced huge backlash after their world-renown Upper Manhattan shop showcased the purse above in its window with a Sambo-like doll attached.
Damn Prada, what are you thinking? You want folks to be going off on you, well if so, get ready for the incoming. As TMZ points out, people went nuts on social media once the image was posted. Some felt it resembled a Sambo figure … others say it resembled a monkey and some felt it was a cross between the two.
The figurines and $550 keychains, part of Prada’s Pradamalia line, featured dark black faces and over-sized red lips, which Ezie said were reminiscent of the racist images and dehumanizing caricatures of black people that appeared in American theater and literature beginning in the 19th century.
In Prada’s statement announcing the company’s decision to pull the products, it describes the items as “fantasy charms” and added they weren’t intended to be offensive.
“Prada Group abhors racist imagery. The Pradamalia are fantasy charms composed of elements of the Prada oeuvre. They are imaginary creatures not intended to have any reference to the real world and certainly not blackface,” a Prada Group spokesperson said in a statement. “Prada Group never had the intention of offending anyone and we abhor all forms of racism and racist imagery. In this interest we will withdraw the characters in question from display and circulation.”