M.I.A. Says Her Video’s Release Is Being Blocked Because Of “Cultural Appropriation”

M.I.A. is no stranger to clashes with her record label, but the latest issue is truly a puzzling one. On Twitter, M.I.A. says that she shot a recent music video in Africa but that an unknown party (perhaps Interscope, but that’s unclear) is preventing its release because of concerns over “cultural appropriation.” Apparently, the entire video is one shot of a dancer from the Ivory Coast. She hasn’t said what song it goes with, though the recent track “Platforms” seems like a fair bet. In any case, the charge seems deeply strange, since cultural appropriation is sort of what M.I.A. does. Nobody complains when she’s using a Clash sample or a Southern rap drum pattern, and her truly great “Bad Girls” video is, among other things, a testament to how truly badass cultural appropriation can be when it’s done right. By that logic, shouldn’t she be prevented from making videos anywhere but Sri Lanka and London? Here’s what M.I.A. has to say about the situation:

I really want to see this video now.

Tags: M.I.A.