Cardi B Apologizes for Dressing as Hindu Goddess on Magazine Cover
The rapper faced backlash after appearing on the November cover of Footwear News in imitation of the Hindu goddess Durga.
Cardi B is facing backlash for her latest magazine cover. The rapper, 28, appears on the November cover of Footwear News in a seeming imitation of the Hindu goddess Durga, who is traditionally depicted with eight to 10 arms. The photo also shows Cardi holding her new Reebok shoe, a detail noted by critics who pointed out that shoes are not allowed in Hindu temples. Social media users accused the rapper of "mocking" their culture and appropriating from a religion she does not follow.
After the controversy, Footwear News apologized for the photo shoot and released a different image from the shoot that does not reference Hinduism. "Yesterday we posted content from our exclusive Cardi B cover shoot," the magazine said in a statement to People. "One of the images was intended to pay homage to Hindu goddess Durga, and our intent was to show a powerful woman. However, we realize we were not considerate of certain cultural and religious perspectives and how this could be perceived as deeply offensive."
"We take full accountability for this oversight and we apologize," the statement continued. "It is important we learn from this example and are sensitive to this sort of religious imagery when creative discussions are taking place in the future. Today, we're releasing another cover from the shoot that was a subscriber exclusive."
Cardi B also apologized on her Instagram Story, admitting that she should have done her research before the cover shoot. "When I did the Reebok shoot, the creatives told me I was going to represent a Goddess; that she represents strength, femininity and liberation, and that's something I love and I'm all about," she said.
"And though it was dope, if people think I'm offending their culture or their religion I want to say I’m sorry," she continued. "That was not my intent. I do not like disrespecting nobody's religion. I wouldn't like people to offend my religion. I wasn't trying to be disrespectful; maybe I should have done my research. I'm sorry, I can't change the past, but I will do more research for the future."