Princess Responds To Criticism Of ‘Racist Brooch’ Worn In Front Of Meghan Markle
Princess Michael of Kent has responded to criticism suggesting she was wearing a ‘racist brooch’ in front of Meghan Markle.
The Princess, who’s married to a cousin of the Queen, was wearing a beige coat, black turtleneck and the brooch, which raised a lot of eyebrows.
The brooch itself is a piece of ‘Blackamoor’ art, a movement which has been at the centre of a fierce debate for years, owing to how it depicts men of colour.
It tends to show men of colour in positions of servitude and the aesthetic is not too distantly reminiscent of certain archaic blackface traditions.
A spokesperson for the wife of the Queen’s cousin told TMZ of all people, she’s ‘very sorry and distressed’ she wore the brooch to the Christmas event and said it ‘was a gift she’s worn many times before, without controversy’.
A source connected to Kensington Palace also said Princess Michael was ‘not trying to insult Meghan or any people of colour’ and not only has she ‘learned her lesson’, she is going to ‘retire the brooch for good’.
The brooch was spotted by Lainey Gossip, who pointed out its problematic origins:
There’s history to that kind of jewelry [sic]… These kinds of pieces depict – and fetishise – Africans in subservient roles. To put it bluntly, this is a piece of jewelry [sic] made out of slave imagery.
And a woman who once told black people to ‘go back to the colonies’ at a restaurant decided that would be what she would wear to the Queen’s Christmas lunch, where the Queen’s grandson was introducing his fiancée, who is biracial, to the extended family for the first time.
Whether Meghan was offended by her brooch is not clear.
However, a piece of jewellery with such controversial histories seems a really odd choice of accessory.
Princess Michael of Kent reportedly told a group of loud African American diners to ‘go back to the colonies’ in 2004 in a restaurant in New York, reports The Guardian.
To defend her actions, she was interviewed on ITV a couple of months later, saying:
I even pretended years ago to be an African, a half-caste African, but because of my light eyes I did not get away with it, but I dyed my hair black.
I travelled on African buses. I wanted to be a writer. I wanted experiences from Cape Town to right up in northern Mozambique. I had this adventure with these absolutely adorable, special people and to call me racist: it’s a knife through the heart because I really love these people.