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Teen Criticized for Wearing Chinese Dress to Prom

By Marissa Landrum

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Is it okay to wear a dress of a different culture to prom? For Utah senior, Keziah Daum, she wanted to wear “something that would be more unique and bold and had some sort of meaning,” she said in an interview.

In downtown Salt Lake City, she came across a red cheongsam, which is a high-collared, form-fitting Chinese dress. Daum, who isn’t Chinese, says she “appreciated the high neckline and it really gave me a sense of appreciation and admiration for other cultures and their beauty,” but not everyone liked the decision of her wearing something of another culture to prom.

Image result for chinese prom dress twitter

Days after she shared prom pictures, a man named Jeremy Lam tweeted, “My culture is NOT your …. prom dress. I’m proud of my culture, including the extreme barriers marginalized people within that culture have had to overcome those obstacles, for it simply be subject to American consumerism and cater to a white audience, is parallel to colonial ideology.”

Another Twitter user said, “This isn’t ok. I wouldn’t wear traditional Korean, Japanese or any other traditional dress and I’m Asian. I wouldn’t wear traditional Irish or Swedish or Greek dress either. There’s a lot of history behind those clothes.”

After all the criticism, Daum said she meant no harm and tweeted, “To everyone who says I’m ignorant, I fully understand everyone’s concerns and views on my dress. I mean no harm. I am in no way being discriminative or racist. I’m tired of all the backlash and hate when my only intent was to show love.”

On the other hand, many people supported her choice of wearing a Chinese prom dress and defended her. A woman on Twitter wrote, “I am a Chinese woman. I support you. You rocked that dress!! I have an 18-year-old daughter who just had her prom. She said people might be just jealous that you look awesome in that dress.”

Another person said, “Good on you for wearing that dress. You look beautiful in it, and don’t let them tell you that you have to be Asian to appreciate the dress. There are just too many trolls out there. Happy Grad 2018!”

After all this happened, she said she has learned the importance of being able to see her own posts from a different lens. “This does give me a better sense of choice and being careful in what I say in posts and how it can be perceived differently. It’s taught me to be extra cautious because you don’t want people to see it the wrong way.”

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The student news site of Greenwood High School
Teen Criticized for Wearing Chinese Dress to Prom