The Internet let out a collective gasp when stills emerged from Coldplay’s new video for “Hymn for the Weekend” with Beyoncé. Most were mesmerized by the pop star’s smoky eyeshadow, gold lipstick and lighter blonde hair set against a floral background. But others took issue with the video’s blatant erasure of Indian culture.
Set in Mumbai, the Hymn for the Weekend video features fire breathers, holy men, temples, children playing Holi and spiritual shamans. Beyoncé stars as a Bollywood actress replete with a sari and henna, and Chris Martin sings while surrounded by Mumbai locals. After the video’s debut, a debate ensued about cultural appropriation. (more…)