Medwards President accused of appropriating Chinese culture
Students were not happy…
C/N- Cultural appropriation
Dame Barbara Stocking, president of Murray Edwards College, attended the college's halfway hall in a Chinese traditional dress.
The event coincided with Chinese New Year and the president wore traditional clothing for the occasion, explaining to students, some of whom were Chinese that it was Chinese New Year in a 'patronising' way. Consequently, students have expressed upset and anger over the act of cultural appropriation.
At the same event, she praised attendees, saying they would graduate with 'both beauty and brains'. Concerns have been raised about the sexist connotations of the statement. In a Christmas formal in 2016, the college president held a competition of 'Who has the highest high heels?' which raised complaints of sexism at the time.
Stocking is currently undergoing media scrutiny as she was CEO of Oxfam at the time where senior aid members used prostitutes in the wake of the Haiti earthquake. She has been accused of assisting in an alleged cover-up of the sexual exploitation.
She has been criticised for using racially charged language and 'othering' the black women who were the victims of the exploitation in her response to allegations.
An anonymous student told the Tab 'I think it is nice of her to acknowledge that it was Chinese New Year's day, but I disagree with the whole wearing traditional Chinese clothing situation. It was halfway hall rather than an event in celebration of the Chinese new year, and showing up to such an event (without prior indication that she was going to wear traditional clothing or telling the 2nd year Chinese students that they are welcome to do so, although obviously no one would stop us from doing that) in my opinion is definitely not appropriate.'