5E World of Farland Now Embraces Asian, African, and Indian Cultures

The World of Farland has been online thoughout various iterations of D&D for as long as I've been running this website. So, about 20 years. It's a dark D&D setting, ruled by evil lords based on the Seven Deadly Sins, with an tmosphere a bit like if Lord of the Rings had gone the other way. The new Realms Under Shadow hardcover supplement introduces new locations which are not dependent on European mythology. I've been sent a few previews to share!

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The World of Farland, conquered by evil and ruled by the Lords of Sin, has been online for nearly 20 years. It's a best-seller here at DTRPG. But the setting has focused on European-style fantasy up to this point. That changes now...

The evil Wintervale has conquered the continent of Farland. But other lands lie south and east of the Wintervale. Some of these exotic realms are allied with the Shadow and some resist it, but either way, they have been affected by it. These are the Realms Under Shadow...

The Realms Under Shadow are fantastic places reminiscent of the medieval cultures of Asia, Africa (including egypt), and India. This campaign supplement allows you to play a game that is not in the vein of the traditional European style fantasy. Adventure in diverse and amazing places. Battle characters and monsters that are a far cry from your usual RPG experience. This book is compatible with the 5th edition of the World's most popular RPG and is a supplement to The World of Farland Campaign Setting, although it can certainly be used on its own.

This 235 page campaign supplement includes:
  • Detailed write-ups on many unique and diverse cultures
  • 14 new PC races
  • New player options, including 15 new class archetypes and paths; feats; and equipment
  • Calendars and gods
  • New Languages
  • Tons of adventure hooks
  • Important NPCs and locations
  • Seventeen new monsters
  • A full length adventure set in the Realms Under Shadow
  • Much more!
  • All exclusive new content that will never appear on the website.
This book comes with two maps of the geography, and it is now available in standard color hardcover and gorgeous premium color hardcover!
 
Russ Morrissey

Comments

Tonguez

Adventurer
I'd be leery to place distinct rules on creativity. I also question the idea that there is a clear formula with regards to respecting other cultures. I personally don't think mixing it up is inherently disrespectful - it can be, especially if it deals in pejorative stereotypes, but doesn't have to be. I mean, "vanilla fantasy" is a mixture of European Medieval, literary, and media influences, and most don't seem to take issue that it isn't properly differentiated into Germanic, Scandinavian, Angro-Saxon, etc.
I may be atypical but I am someone who does notice and take issue when European cultural zones arent differentiated, so you wont get centaurs in my Celtic Highlands region and my elves are inspired by Leanan sídhe. Just to note Scandinavians and Angro-Saxons are Germanic cultures, the better division is Germanic, Slavic, Celtic, or Latin. (That does raise a point about Vampire though, since though they are now part of popular culture, they do ultimately derive from Slavic myth)

There's always going to be a wide range of responses, both from people within and outside of a given culture. But as far as I can tell, a product like this one isn't intending to accurately characterize historical cultures, but is instead a syncretism intended for entertainment purposes. I would think that the "inspired by" part is assumed and implied.
Some of the issue comes from direct referencing of real world cultures- for instance "embracing Japan" means that the product needs to be more faithful than if it said "enter the feudal empire of Wamato whose warrior elite, bound by the Code of the Saburai, swear undying fealty to the Daimyo as they go forth to defend their clan on the battlefield or in the intrigues of the Imperial Court"

the reader knows that the place references Medieval Japanese culture but because it doesn't claim to be inspired by Japan (as opposed to the novel Shogun) it gets a bit more latitude. Authenticity is still important nonetheless and it would at least be polite to get some experts with knowledge of Medieval Japan to comment

A further point: some cultural forms have different variations, so there isn't necessarily an "official" version of the djinn, for instance, which developed over thousands of years. The genie of Arabian Nights and the jinn of Sufi philosophy are rather different--not to mention the pre-Islamic roots.
thats not really an argument, its just saying that theres no standard genie/djinn
Part of the fun of D&D is that it is a "kitchen sink" of different ideas, which each of us gets to use how we want. As far as I can tell-from an admittedly cursory glance--this is Farland's version of Asian-inspired cultures, no more or less.
yes the kitchen sink can be fun, and what you do at home is your business entirely.
But one of the stinking points about commercial products, as it relates to Culture though is the commodification of Culture ie who 'owns' the cultural property of the product? Are the Samurai in Farlands product the property of Farland or of Japanese culture? Who gets to define what Samurai are?
 

Celebrim

Legend
Are Japanese people offended when they hear about American media with oni, samurai, or ninja that don't match their own ideas of what these things are?
To follow alongside what you are saying here, I think there is a bit of patronization involved in worrying about whether Japanese people are offended by the use of oni, samurai, ninja or whatever, and yet at the same time suggesting that Western influences on Japanese culture are not cultural appropriation by the Japanese, but rather cultural hegemony. The problem with that way of viewing things is that regardless of what happens, you are viewing the world as if Japanese people are the ones being acted on, and not the ones doing the acting.

Are all the Western references in Japanese animation or manga problematic? If I make a Street Fighter II style video game, how authentic do I have to make all the stereotyped cartoonish fighters before I'm sufficiently respectful?

No one has ever been able to give me some sort of consistent rules regarding when inclusion is good or when inclusion is bad. It all seems suspiciously subjective and often as not the self-appointed judges of what is good inclusion or bad inclusion aren't really even cultural experts or members of the culture. It's easy to get into a situation where if you don't publish things inspired by non-European cultures then they accuse you of not being inclusive and of white washing, and if you do then they say it's cultural appropriation.

My personal opinion is that if it isn't plagiarism and it isn't mockery, then it probably isn't wrong. And even then, there are some gentle ribbings that I think ought to be allowed. For example, I think the portrayal of the Americans and English schools in 'Girls and Panzers' is hilarious. Fundamentally, I don't think anyone owns a 'culture'. If some Japanese or Chinese musician plays Mozart, and is inspired by Mozart, they are as much the heir of Mozart - or even more so - than an Austrian or German. I don't think you get to say, "You can't make Cajun food because you aren't from Louisiana." We might laugh at what you call jambalaya, but you know, what's 'authentic' is ultimately what your grandma made. I don't think people get to tell me I can't make rice and peas or jerk chicken, and I don't think there is someone out there with magisterial authority to police who can. I don't think the uses of culture are licensed, and I'm skeptical of the idea that there is someone that can appoint themselves to that job.

And why is it that someone can speak for the whole of a marginal group anyway? Do you really think that they have all the same opinions? Isn't that marginalizing? Why do they have to be represented by some single high priest? You wouldn't put up with someone claiming to speak for you.

Really, I think this comes down to people hearing a term like 'cultural appropriation', not understanding what it means, and then misapplying that term to mean things far broader than what was intended, by using the common sense meaning of the two words. Actual 'cultural appropriation' is plagiarism that occurs when members of a dominate group feel they don't have to obey rules regarding copyright if it is with respect to a marginalized group. And you can go back into the history of rock music (for example) and see examples of that practice, and it is damnable, just as any sort of plagiarism is damnable. I'm not suggesting someone can't own their own creative works. But actually taking ideas from other cultures and blending them with other ideas in a creative manner is not cultural appropriation, and it's a good thing and not a bad thing.

The great achievements of humanity are the common heritage of all humanity.
 
I may be atypical but I am someone who does notice and take issue when European cultural zones arent differentiated, so you wont get centaurs in my Celtic Highlands region and my elves are inspired by Leanan sídhe. Just to note Scandinavians and Angro-Saxons are Germanic cultures, the better division is Germanic, Slavic, Celtic, or Latin. (That does raise a point about Vampire though, since though they are now part of popular culture, they do ultimately derive from Slavic myth)
Is this aesthetic or ideological or both? Meaning, do you take issue with "Celtic centaurs" because it is aesthetically jarring for you (sort of like pickles in your ice cream) or because you find it disrespectful?

Some of the issue comes from direct referencing of real world cultures- for instance "embracing Japan" means that the product needs to be more faithful than if it said "enter the feudal empire of Wamato whose warrior elite, bound by the Code of the Saburai, swear undying fealty to the Daimyo as they go forth to defend their clan on the battlefield or in the intrigues of the Imperial Court"

the reader knows that the place references Medieval Japanese culture but because it doesn't claim to be inspired by Japan (as opposed to the novel Shogun) it gets a bit more latitude. Authenticity is still important nonetheless and it would at least be polite to get some experts with knowledge of Medieval Japan to comment
The key phrase is "The product needs to be." According to whom? Where is this "need" derived from?

I'm not saying that such a product shouldn't be well-researched and such, I'm just questioning the "need" part. I mean, we get into endless semantic nit-picking: influenced by vs. embracing, etc.

yes the kitchen sink can be fun, and what you do at home is your business entirely.
But one of the stinking points about commercial products, as it relates to Culture though is the commodification of Culture ie who 'owns' the cultural property of the product? Are the Samurai in Farlands product the property of Farland or of Japanese culture? Who gets to define what Samurai are?
Well, I personally am pretty permissive and believe that the creator of a fantasy product can do pretty much whatever they want. I mean, obviously there are some things I would recommend against, but in the world of fantasy, i don't have an issue with an author picking and choosing, mixing and maxing different elements--because it is fantasy.

Now if they created a "Historic Japan" product, like a GURPS sourcebook, then I think accuracy is more important.

As for your question, "who gets to define what Samurai are," I think that's just it. No one in particular. I mean, is there an official Bureau of Samurai Lore in Japan? And if so, would they even care, especially considering the very limited profitability of such a product? I could see them taking issue with a blockbuster film that depicted Samurai in an innacurate way, but a fantasy RPG product that might be purchased by a few thousand people at most?
 

Beleriphon

Totally Awesome Pirate Brain
Really, I think this comes down to people hearing a term like 'cultural appropriation', not understanding what it means, and then misapplying that term to mean things far broader than what was intended, by using the common sense meaning of the two words. Actual 'cultural appropriation' is plagiarism that occurs when members of a dominate group feel they don't have to obey rules regarding copyright if it is with respect to a marginalized group. And you can go back into the history of rock music (for example) and see examples of that practice, and it is damnable, just as any sort of plagiarism is damnable. I'm not suggesting someone can't own their own creative works. But actually taking ideas from other cultures and blending them with other ideas in a creative manner is not cultural appropriation, and it's a good thing and not a bad thing.
Cultural appropriate is basically taking part of a culture to which one does not belong and using it as a gimmick, and not treating it with the level of respect is should have (this can range from none to lots) based on the original culture. The feathered head dress of the plains people in North America for example being worm at say a costume party is cultural appropriation, its is turning something of significant culture importance into a cheap costume. Having a Hollywood prop department make a head dress and having somebody wear it in a movie about say Geronimo or Sitting Bull is okay, assuming we have actual indigenous people portraying said roles.

As for samurai, I'm pretty sure between 1600 and 1868 the Tokugawa Shogunate determined what was a samurai. Given that most samurai stuff is based on that specific time period, I'm guessing that Tokugawa Ieyasu and his descendants (until Tokugawa Yoshinobu) are still determining that after a fashion.
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
I may be atypical but I am someone who does notice and take issue when European cultural zones arent differentiated, so you wont get centaurs in my Celtic Highlands region and my elves are inspired by Leanan sídhe. Just to note Scandinavians and Angro-Saxons are Germanic cultures, the better division is Germanic, Slavic, Celtic, or Latin. (That does raise a point about Vampire though, since though they are now part of popular culture, they do ultimately derive from Slavic myth)



Some of the issue comes from direct referencing of real world cultures- for instance "embracing Japan" means that the product needs to be more faithful than if it said "enter the feudal empire of Wamato whose warrior elite, bound by the Code of the Saburai, swear undying fealty to the Daimyo as they go forth to defend their clan on the battlefield or in the intrigues of the Imperial Court"

the reader knows that the place references Medieval Japanese culture but because it doesn't claim to be inspired by Japan (as opposed to the novel Shogun) it gets a bit more latitude. Authenticity is still important nonetheless and it would at least be polite to get some experts with knowledge of Medieval Japan to comment



yes the kitchen sink can be fun, and what you do at home is your business entirely.
But one of the stinking points about commercial products, as it relates to Culture though is the commodification of Culture ie who 'owns' the cultural property of the product? Are the Samurai in Farlands product the property of Farland or of Japanese culture? Who gets to define what Samurai are?
I agree with your post.



Heh, also. I may be atypical but I am someone who does notice and take issue when Norse cultural zones arent differentiated from Saxon cultural zones.

So you wont get those little Saxon dwarves in my Norse mountains and mounds.

And my Norse elves are up in the sky and hug sunbeams, and dont hug trees like the Celtic sidhe do.



And, heh, when people put valkyrjar on top of pegasi, it makes me wince. And if people turn Baldr into a ‘god’ of ‘charisma’, it makes me cry.
 

Celebrim

Legend
The feathered head dress of the plains people in North America for example being worm at say a costume party is cultural appropriation, its is turning something of significant culture importance into a cheap costume.
I could sort of be OK with that if that was held as a standard reciprocally and without hypocrisy. Ok, let's not mock or trivialize what is sacred to someone else. And as long as that didn't reach the level of implementing blasphemy laws, I'd be OK with that as a standard.

But that's not a uniform standard. For example, by the same standard aren't 'Darwin Fish' and 'Flying Spaghetti Monster' fish cultural appropriation of the Ichthys symbol? And aren't those even more obviously attempts at mockery than someone putting on a fake eagle feather war bonnet? Will sexy Nun costumes be considered in similarly poor taste? Will appropriation of a crucifix or a church as a tawdry means creating gravitas in someone's bloody horror movie be something that we start shunning authors for, and if it is, then where does that stop?

In terms of wearing costumes, I think the issue comes down to the fact that historically that has been done as a sort of ritualized foolery, which was once a big part of the European cultural tradition, and now in the US mostly is confined to Halloween. And that ritualized foolery was combined with essentially racial belittlement for a long time - equating the ritual foolish state of the actor with the identity of a minority group. That is a separate issue though from this idea that we ought to respect sacred spaces and practices.

Because I think that even if we adopted non-sacred ordinary aspects of the costumes of Native American people - beads and rawhide dresses for example - and dressed up in those, I think that there would still be offense taken whether or not any was meant, simply because of that association with past racial belittlement.

And none of that would address whether we having eagle feather warbonnets in a fantasy setting was turning something of "significant culture importance" in to something "cheap".
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
Regarding vampires. Popculture is aware of the possibility of different kinds of vampires. So it is easy to set aside a few species of vampire that represent a mythologically accurate vampire of a specific region and era.
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
To follow alongside what you are saying here, I think there is a bit of patronization involved in worrying about whether Japanese people are offended by the use of oni, samurai, ninja or whatever, and yet at the same time suggesting that Western influences on Japanese culture are not cultural appropriation by the Japanese, but rather cultural hegemony. The problem with that way of viewing things is that regardless of what happens, you are viewing the world as if Japanese people are the ones being acted on, and not the ones doing the acting.

Are all the Western references in Japanese animation or manga problematic? If I make a Street Fighter II style video game, how authentic do I have to make all the stereotyped cartoonish fighters before I'm sufficiently respectful?

No one has ever been able to give me some sort of consistent rules regarding when inclusion is good or when inclusion is bad. It all seems suspiciously subjective and often as not the self-appointed judges of what is good inclusion or bad inclusion aren't really even cultural experts or members of the culture. It's easy to get into a situation where if you don't publish things inspired by non-European cultures then they accuse you of not being inclusive and of white washing, and if you do then they say it's cultural appropriation.

My personal opinion is that if it isn't plagiarism and it isn't mockery, then it probably isn't wrong. And even then, there are some gentle ribbings that I think ought to be allowed. For example, I think the portrayal of the Americans and English schools in 'Girls and Panzers' is hilarious. Fundamentally, I don't think anyone owns a 'culture'. If some Japanese or Chinese musician plays Mozart, and is inspired by Mozart, they are as much the heir of Mozart - or even more so - than an Austrian or German. I don't think you get to say, "You can't make Cajun food because you aren't from Louisiana." We might laugh at what you call jambalaya, but you know, what's 'authentic' is ultimately what your grandma made. I don't think people get to tell me I can't make rice and peas or jerk chicken, and I don't think there is someone out there with magisterial authority to police who can. I don't think the uses of culture are licensed, and I'm skeptical of the idea that there is someone that can appoint themselves to that job.

And why is it that someone can speak for the whole of a marginal group anyway? Do you really think that they have all the same opinions? Isn't that marginalizing? Why do they have to be represented by some single high priest? You wouldn't put up with someone claiming to speak for you.

Really, I think this comes down to people hearing a term like 'cultural appropriation', not understanding what it means, and then misapplying that term to mean things far broader than what was intended, by using the common sense meaning of the two words. Actual 'cultural appropriation' is plagiarism that occurs when members of a dominate group feel they don't have to obey rules regarding copyright if it is with respect to a marginalized group. And you can go back into the history of rock music (for example) and see examples of that practice, and it is damnable, just as any sort of plagiarism is damnable. I'm not suggesting someone can't own their own creative works. But actually taking ideas from other cultures and blending them with other ideas in a creative manner is not cultural appropriation, and it's a good thing and not a bad thing.

The great achievements of humanity are the common heritage of all humanity.
Your critiques are spot on.



At the same time, there is a simple rule. Dont misrepresent.

Dont SAY something is Norse, if it isnt.

Dont SAY something is Japanese, if it isnt.

Dont SAY something is Cherokee, if it isnt.

Dont SAY something is Bantu, if it isnt.



And when creatively borrowing and reinventing some element from an other culture, clarify that this is nonrepresentative.
 
There was a whole thread in the Media forum that deep-dived into cultural appropriation and was, perhaps inevitably, closed due to veering too far into the political. But this is a very relevant topic for game design, so hopefully this thread won't face the same fate.

Anyhow, I think it is important to point out that cultural appropriation is an idea, a perspective, and one that is not agreed upon by all. It is an academic contstruct derived from culture studies to explain certain phenomena around colonialism and post-colonialism. But what constitutes cultural appropriation seems to vary, depending upon who is using (and defining) the term. And of course not everyone buys into the concept at all, or finds it very useful.

One of the big problems with the concept is that it is very difficult to draw a line around distinct cultures. Is there such a thing as pure or authentic, original cultures? Probably not, at least not anymore. Maybe in Papua New Guinea or the Amazon, but even then those cultures probably assimilated elements of other cultures. Especially in today's global context, cultures bleed into each other.

Furthermore, who owns culture? Does anyone own Japanese culture, or Samurai culture? Does a random Japanese teenager on the streets of Tokyo have more claim to Samurai culture than a Western scholar of Japanese history? Who gets to decide these things?

But if we put aside the concept and ask what we really wish to address by using it, my guess is that we can come to common ground: being respectful, not being exploitive, being as accurate with your representation as possible, etc. Of course we're still going to come back to the questions around what is and is not respectful or exploitive, and in the end I think it comes down to every creator (or game designer) to decide what seems best to them.

In other words, to say something is wrong because it is cultural appropriation, assumes a lot of things that cannot necessarily be assumed: that people agree on what is and is not cultural appropriation, or even whether it is a useful concept in the first place. A person may not find it very useful at all, but still be interested in being respectful and not exploiting other cultures.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Furthermore, who owns culture? Does anyone own Japanese culture, or Samurai culture? Does a random Japanese teenager on the streets of Tokyo have more claim to Samurai culture than a Western scholar of Japanese history? Who gets to decide these things?
It's not about ownership; it's about identity and thoughtfulness. There aren't laws governing these things; just mutual respect. And when you're the most powerful country in the world and easily able to ride roughshod over others with little consequence, it's important to try not to.
 
It's not about ownership; it's about identity and thoughtfulness. There aren't laws governing these things; just mutual respect. And when you're the most powerful country in the world and easily able to ride roughshod over others with little consequence, it's important to try not to.
Yes, which brings me back to being respectful. I don't think anyone disagrees on whether or not we should be respectful. Where there is a range of views is what constitutes respect, and perhaps whether or not "cultural appropriation" is the right way to go about it.

p.s. As an American, I've never been able to "ride roughshod over others with little consequence." I feel like I'm missing out! ;) That said, I get what you mean on a national and historic level - but it doesn't usually apply on the individual, personal level.
 

Yaarel

Adventurer
That said, I get what you mean on a national and historic level - but it doesn't usually apply on the individual, personal level.
Yeah. In my experience, American individuals are often hyper-respectful because of concerns about national history.

I feel most Americans, just want things to be fair, for everyone all around, with everyone playing by the same rules.

American individuals at personal level dont want to bully, nor do they want to be bullied.
 

SkidAce

Adventurer
yes the kitchen sink can be fun, and what you do at home is your business entirely.
But one of the stinking points about commercial products, as it relates to Culture though is the commodification of Culture ie who 'owns' the cultural property of the product? Are the Samurai in Farlands product the property of Farland or of Japanese culture? Who gets to define what Samurai are?
The creator of the setting, regardless whether published or not.

Shadowrun has street samurai. Inspired by Japanese culture I am sure, but taken in a direction as needed to fit the setting.

Some things have become archetypes, as accurate or inaccurate as they may be. Was Neal Stephenson wrong in imposing a cultural icon onto the hero (pun) of Snowcrash?
 

RichCMidas

Villager
Are Japanese people offended when they hear about American media with oni, samurai, or ninja that don't match their own ideas of what these things are?
As for your question, "who gets to define what Samurai are," I think that's just it. No one in particular. I mean, is there an official Bureau of Samurai Lore in Japan? And if so, would they even care, especially considering the very limited profitability of such a product? I could see them taking issue with a blockbuster film that depicted Samurai in an innacurate way, but a fantasy RPG product that might be purchased by a few thousand people at most?
Hey that reminds me - anyone else remember when "The Last Samurai" came out, with Tom Cruise and Ken Watanabe? America was relatively subdued about the film (perhaps being in the early phases of seeing it as another example of whitewashing) and saw the characters as fairly uninspired and archetypal...but Japan loved it with a notable exception: they felt Watanabe's character was not believable as a samurai, because as far as they were concerned, the samurai were little more than imperially-sanctioned thugs who could do whatever they liked to the general populace and get away with it. That Watanabe's character was the absolute ideal Western concept of a samurai jarred with their actual experiences.

In fact, if I recall the article...here: a few interesting comments.

<><>

That aside however, there is a cultural advantage in myself being the primary author of the material. I'm not US-of-American. I'm a mixed-race dual national who, for about the first fifteen years of my life, was too light to be called black and too dark to be called white (though it turns out I'm closer to white after a decade in bleak sunless England). You cannot reasonably, or accurately, accuse me of even incidental Western or white imperialism.

If ever I ride roughshod over something, it is purely accidental, not that this makes it any better, and I treat EVERY culture and nation the same. Every aspect of every culture is equal opportunity open season as far as I am concerned. I will take the good and the bad, and praise or criticise without prejudice. What I always regret, however, is never having enough time or space to do everything justice*.

I still try my best.

Should I fail, then hopefully others will be sufficiently inspired (or perhaps incensed) to perform their own labours in correcting my own failings - even if it's just for a homebrew campaign.

At the end of the day, I'm a one-man band of a physically mature boy (mental maturity almost absent according to my partner) who is playing a very elaborate game of make-believe and typing up a bunch of personal home rules for others to use in similar games if they want to. That I was able to speak to anyone regarding some of the cultures who inspired this work is, considering the resources and time available to me, something of a personal miracle.

And as Yaarel mentioned, to the best of my recollection, we abided by that very core principle of "do not misrepresent". Inspiration drawn from a culture, yes; calling what resulted from that inspiration to be an aspect of said culture, no.

*Which does bring to mind the brief touching-upon of the World of Farland's pantheon in the nation of Badala - there was nowhere nearly enough on the deities there in their local forms as opposed to their setting-standard. Pure oversight on my part. I intend to release a companion piece rectifying that for the website.
 
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MGibster

Adventurer
they felt Watanabe's character was not believable as a samurai, because as far as they were concerned, the samurai were little more than imperially-sanctioned thugs who could do whatever they liked to the general populace and get away with it. That Watanabe's character was the absolute ideal Western concept of a samurai jarred with their actual experiences.
That was my exact reaction when I saw the movie. It was hard for me to feel sorry for the samurai when he was humiliated by the peasant soldiers.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
In australia you can find plenty of restaurants and other businesses run by various asian groups that use the adjective oriental in their name.

We don't connect the word with racism here.

Do europeans do it? I wonder if it's a particularly nkrth american thing.
Yes, it's common here in the UK. Supermarket sections, too.
 

MGibster

Adventurer
In australia you can find plenty of restaurants and other businesses run by various asian groups that use the adjective oriental in their name.

We don't connect the word with racism here.

Do europeans do it? I wonder if it's a particularly nkrth american thing.
It's a weird word in the United States. You'll find oriental used in the title of markets, restaurants, and used to describe types of rugs. But these days it's not really the thing to describe people as orientals. If you do you might hear someone say, "Oriental describes things not people."
 

Sadras

Adventurer
Cultural appropriate is basically taking part of a culture to which one does not belong and using it as a gimmick, and not treating it with the level of respect is should have (this can range from none to lots) based on the original culture. The feathered head dress of the plains people in North America for example being worm at say a costume party is cultural appropriation, its is turning something of significant culture importance into a cheap costume.
If it were an expensive costume would it be better? Approximately how much respect does one need to give to a feathered head dress of the plains people in North America or a Scottish kilt or an Indian sari?

Having a Hollywood prop department make a head dress and having somebody wear it in a movie about say Geronimo or Sitting Bull is okay, assuming we have actual indigenous people portraying said roles.
Poor Anthony Quin didn't know he was culturally appropriating when he was cast as Alexis Zorba in Zorba the Greek.
 
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