Adele Sparks Controversy with Bantu Knots Hairstyle

Adele is receiving backlash for posting a picture celebrating the since-canceled Notting Hill Carnival.

Sunday on Instagram, the “Hello” singer posted a photo of herself wearing Bantu knots and a Jamaican flag bikini top in what appears to be a nod to the event, which celebrates Caribbean culture.

“Happy what would be Notting Hill Carnival my beloved London,” she wrote about the carnival, which would have taken place August 30 and 31.

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, the event has turned into a “digital carnival” and will be held virtually from August 29 to the 31st.

However, after the songstress posted her snap, social media users accused her of cultural appropriation, as the Bantu knots hairstyle has strong origins in southern Africa and is often worn by Black women with natural hair.

Journalist Ernest Owens wrote on Twitter, “If 2020 couldn’t get anymore bizarre, Adele is giving us Bantu knots and cultural appropriation that nobody asked for. This officially marks all of the top white women in pop as problematic. Hate to see it.”

“RuPaul’s Drag Race” alum The Vixen added, “Twice this weekend I have seen people do backflips to defend white women in Bantu Knots. If you spent the whole summer posting #blacklivesmatter and don’t see the problem here, you were lying the whole time.”

Twitter user @ketowithcalicat wrote and then deleted, “Naw sis you know you messed up on this one. This is not the move @adele. Cultural appropriation is not the move. That’s all I’m gonna say about this shenanigans.”

On the other hand, some defended the musician against the criticism.

“Ppl don’t know what cultural appropriation is, she’s obviously celebrating a Carribbean festival, in an appropriate outfit for that festival. She’s not wearing Bantu knots and feathers to go to the beach because it’s really fashionable,” wrote user @kyrstldp.

“I love this. Adele is celebrating my culture. so big up to Adele, don’t listen to the 5% of haters and idiots complaining, I see nothing wrong here. #Adele,” said user @ZaynKylo.

Adele, however, is not the only white celebrity who has worn Bantu knots in a social media post.

Back in 2016, social media users were divided when Khloé Kardashian posted a photo of herself with the hairstyle.

View this post on Instagram

I like this one better

A post shared by Khloé (@khloekardashian) on

Per Us Weekly, Kardashian initially captioned the post, “Bantu babe” but then deleted it and posted another photo with the text, “I like this one better.”

As of this writing, Adele has yet to comment on the controversy.


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