‘Blackface’ backfire - the pics that sparked a hate-storm
A Hungarian journalist sparked the ire of the internet by publishing images in which she is “morphed” into a member of different African tribes.
Boglarka Balogh claims the images are to raise awareness of the tribe’s secluded culture, but has been trolled for “blackfacing”.
The 34-year-old self-described human rights journalist transformed her white skin and blonde hair into seven different dark-skinned women, each modeled on a separate tribe.
The internet was quick to take offence, labeling the piece “blackface” and insensitive. “This woman did blackface to bring awareness to people that already EXIST and could have simply shared videos and pictures,” one commenter said.
Another read: “Blackface helps no one - what the hell were you thinking? These women are beautiful and dignified in their own right - superimposing your face on theirs just serves to erase them from their own stories and foreground you. Shameful.”
“Blackface” occurs when a non-black performer uses make-up to portray themselves as black. In some cultures it is still common including Holland, where Black Pete assists Santa Claus every Christmas.
Jezebel was extremely critical of Balogh, calling her the “White Devil” and “dimwitted”. Balogh posted an image calling for love in response to their criticism.
The post, which had been viewed on the website BoredPanda more than 130,000 times has since been removed. In a message in its place Balogh said “Since I had no intentions to offend anyone and yet I’m not able to answer to all of you, I’ve decided to delete my post.”
“My intention was 100 percent pure with this tribal art, being a human rights lawyer and journalist who knows pretty much about racism and similar issues, I have never imagined that my work will annoy so many people and that I will have to explain myself.”