Video tribute to chopsticks and Chinese culture goes viral again after Dolce & Gabbana saga

Video tribute to chopsticks and Chinese culture goes viral again after Dolce & Gabbana saga
PHOTO: Facebook/CCTV

They may look simple, but chopsticks carry with them over 4,000 years of Chinese culture and emotions, said Chinese broadcaster CCTV.

"Do you really understand chopsticks?" it wrote in a Nov 21 Facebook post as it reshared a Chinese New Year video from 2015 that featured the eating utensils.

In the touching video, the chopsticks are used as a tool to impart values to the young, express affection in the family, and foster the spirit of neighbourliness.

Within a week, the five-minute-long clip garnered close to 900,000 views and over 16,000 shares.

on Facebook

Do you really understand chopsticks?

Posted by CCTV on Wednesday, 21 November 2018

The post and many of its comments appear to be directed at Italian luxury brand Dolce & Gabbana, which is now in hot water over a racist ad in China.

Last week, the luxury fashion brand ran a campaign that showed a model struggling to eat Italian food with a pair of oversized chopsticks.

In a series of video clips, a man can be heard saying lines like: "Let's grab this cannoli, is it too big for you? You can stick your chopsticks into it and eat it like this."

Many saw the ads as an insult to Chinese culture while others were disgusted by the sexual innuendo.

The video clips were meant to drum up excitement for Dolce & Gabbana's upcoming fashion show in Shanghai, but they backfired. Terribly.

THE GREAT SHOW had to be cancelled at the last minute because many A-list Chinese celebrities such as Zhang Ziyi and Chen Kun refused to attend it.

Following the incident, numerous Chinese stars also proclaimed their love for their country on their Weibo accounts while Dolce & Gabbana ambassadors Dilraba Dilmurat and Wang Junkai announced that they were cutting ties with the brand.

Chinese celebs proclaim love of country after D&G racist ad incurs wrath of netizens

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    D&G's post on Chinese social media platform Weibo to promote its upcoming runway show in Shanghai have been accused of leaning heavily on Chinese stereotypes, causing heated discussion on social media platforms both at home and abroad

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    The series of 'ads' showed a Chinese woman being told how to use chopsticks to eat Italian food like pizza and spaghetti.

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    Early Wednesday morning, in a chat on Instagram between a netizen named "michaelatranova" and someone using the personal account of Stefano Gabbana, one of the brand's co-founders, Gabbana allegedly made insulting references toward China and Chinese people.

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    After the issue blew up, Steffano then claimed that his account was hacked.

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    Several Chinese celebrities including Zhang Ziyi, Li Bingbing, Wang Junkai and Chen Kun had confirmed their absence from the brand's "The Great Show" fashion show before the brand announced cancellation officially.

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    The brand's China ambassador Dilraba Dilmurat has deleted all posts related to the brand and said on Weibo, "I love you, my dearest country, China."

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    Wang Junkai had also terminated his working relationship with the Italian brand.

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    Chinese actress Li Bingbing pulled out of the show and posted a proclamation on Weibo in response to the debacle.

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    D&G posted a response on Instagram, but did not apologise.

The faux pas also sparked a massive boycott of the brand in China with products pulled from retail shops and shopping websites, Bloomberg reported.

"China is rich in its values, its culture and its people and they won’t spend a penny on a brand that does not respect that," Chinese model Estelle Chen wrote on Instagram.

Even though the brand's designers and founders have said "Sorry" and hoped that they will be forgiven for their poor understanding of culture, it may be too late to apologise.

minlee@sph.com.sg

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