Is Cardi B posing the Hindu goddess Durga a form of cultural appropriation? What about American women wearing hijab as a form of solidarity? Or Western people practicing yoga?
While cultural appropriation has become a common topic of discussion in recent years, in everything from the Great British Baking Show to Halloween costumes, the concept of religious appropriation has been left largely untouched. In her new book, “Stealing My Religion,” Liz Bucar, a professor of religion at Northeastern, shines a spotlight on this “particularly messy form of cultural appropriation,” what it reveals about inappropriate cultural borrowing more broadly and what can come out of these often uncomfortable conversations.
“Being uncomfortable can be productive,” Bucar says. “It’s not about shaming people, but it’s about trying to provide some framework for conversation and reflection.”