Poor people modeling obscenely expensive clothes! The latest Vogue controversy

photos courtesy of Vogue Indiaphotos courtesy of Vogue IndiaThe man in this picture is carrying a $200 umbrella. Even though he is toothless, barefoot and probably living on about $1.25 a day. Elsewhere in Vogue India's August issue, regular (read: not wealthy) Indians carry $10,000 Birkin bags and the children of poor women don $100 Fendi bibs.
Vogue India's editor Priya Tanna told the New York Times that by choosing ordinary Indians over models she wanted to show "the power of fashion...[That] fashion is no longer a rich man's privilege. Anyone can carry it off and make it look beautiful."
Um, yeah. Anyone can make anything look beautiful if it was FREE. But the fact that 456 million people in India (half of the country's population) live on less than $40 a month, means that yes, fashion is solely a rich man's privilege and a symbol of affluence. I wonder if Ms. Tanna would buy an umbrella that cost her five months' pay. Sigh.
Source: NYTimes
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