Paltrow and the N-Word: Is It Ever OK?

The "N**gas in Paris" Twitter controversy is deeply rooted in a lack of agency and ownership over our own vast influence on mainstream culture, Rebecca Carroll writes in a piece for Ebony.

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The "N**gas in Paris" Twitter controversy is deeply rooted in a lack of agency and ownership over our own vast influence on mainstream culture, Rebecca Carroll writes in a piece for Ebony.

The black digerati had their panties in a tweet on Monday when Gwyneth Paltrow -- ever the antithesis of all that is negro -- tweeted a pic of herself on stage in Paris with Kanye and Jay-Z along with the caption: “Ni**as in paris for real.” Naturally, minutes later the headline “Gwyneth Paltrow Tweets the N-Word” then spread like wildfire on the interwebs. Paltrow was in Paris attending Jay and Kanye’s “Watch the Throne” tour -- so she got the Paris part right. Less clear to Paltrow was the fact that we don't now, nor have we ever needed her to cleverly kick song titles with the N-word back to us. Yes, it is the title of a Jay and Kanye hit song (Paltrow responded to the criticism in a follow up tweet: “Hold up, it’s the title of the song!”), but, um, we knew that homegirl.

Read Rebecca Carroll's entire piece at Ebony.

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