The Wiggles Apologize After ‘Culturally Insensitive’ Pappadum Song Goes Viral
By Thanussha Priyah, 28 Oct 2020
Image by Spasmsmash at English Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 4.0)
Australian children musical group The Wiggles have apologized after their song about Indian cuisine resurfaced online and sparked backlash for being “insensitive.”
Back in 2014, the group was a part of the show called Ready, Steady, Wiggle!. They had performed a song called The Pappadum Song in the Lachy’s Pappadum Party episode.
The performers were seen wearing Indian garb and singing along to lyrics that mostly went by, “Pappadum, pappadum, pappa pappa pappa dum.”
At one point, Anthony Field danced with a cricket bat, while the rest of the group held the Indian flatbread behind him.
Many Twitter users weren’t pleased with the video for perpetuating the stereotypes tied to Indian culture. “My jaw hit the floor the first time I saw it. Very, very culturally insensitive, and such a stereotype,” one user wrote.
However, others felt that the video was a simple introduction for children to learn about different cultures.
Another user questioned Field directly, asking if he was the creator of the song. The 57-year-old responded to the tweet by stating that he had written the song but with good intentions in mind.
“I wrote the song, and directed the clip in 2014 (which was meant as a celebration),” Field wrote on Twitter. “It was not my intention to be culturally insensitive to the Indian community or to add value to ethnic stereotyping. Apologies.”
to be clear, this was not the representation i wanted pic.twitter.com/vNswTi0E16— Ashmi (@_ashmip) October 22, 2020
It's a bunch of white people dressed up as Indians (poorly) singing 'papadum' over and over. The only person not singing or speaking is the only Indian (it appears) woman. It's pretty damn offensive.— WhatTheDickens (@WhatTheDickens6) October 22, 2020
It’s just not a good introduction to anything. It’s basic Western European style condescending kids music with, for no discernible reason, an Indian woman dancing and everyone else doing mock Indian things. There’s no actual cultural enrichment going on.— Wear a Mask 😷🔭🧲🦒🌻🎶🤘🎸🥁🏒☠️🦖☀️🌒🌎🚀☄️🪐👽 (@Exostrologist) October 22, 2020
Al, I wrote the song, and directed the clip in 2014 (which was meant as a celebration). It was not my intention to be culturally insensitive to the Indian community, or to add value to ethnic stereotyping. Apologies .— Anthony Field (@Anthony_Wiggle) October 22, 2020
[via News.com.au, cover image by Spasmsmash at English Wikipedia (CC BY-SA 4.0)]
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