Tina Knowles came to her daughter Beyoncé's defense against claims that her upcoming visual album, "Black Is King," appropriates African culture.
Tina Knowles is not having any of the backlash against Beyoncé for her upcoming visual album, Black Is King. Last weekend, Bey dropped the trailer for the project, which was inspired by The Lion King: The Gift. The story will follow a young African king's “transcendent journey through betrayal, love and self-identity" led by his ancestors. However, ever since then, Bey's been criticized for incorporating various themes and imagery from a number of different African cultures, despite not shooting in Africa nor making clear which specific cultures the film is exploring. While Bey has yet to respond to these accusations of cultural appropriation, her mother has fiercely defended Bey and the visual album in a series of Instagram posts.
Over the past few days, Tina has been sharing and reposting statements on IG about the criticism Bey has received. “Those who are criticizing the film (before they even see it) saying it’s unauthentic, upset that B doesn’t actually go to Africa or say that Bey is simply using African cultures for gain are wrong," Tina wrote in one post, which points out that two of the contributors on the film, Joshua Kissi and Blitz Bazawule, are African. In another post, Tina shared a tweet that echoes how Bey worked with African creatives to make the film. "Some of you criticize under the thinly veiled guise of educating her," Tina wrote, "but you haven’t seen anything but a 3 minute trailer and you judge so quickly."
Prior to these posts, Tina shared another tweet that points out that Bey profits less from her "Afrocentric content,” like the album Lemonade, but still continues to "make music highlighting Blackness" anyway. In the caption, Tina called out the so-called "social media terrorists" for criticizing "the wrong people," urging them to redirect their energy toward “critiquing and tearing down the systems that hurt and suppress us.” Tina finished off this post by stating that Beyoncé "has a right to her heritage as well as anyone else in the world."