Saturday, February 13, 2010

Roma Community protest Julia Chaplins book "Gypset Style"

A thoroughly exploitative new book has been published recently and has caused an uproar in the Roma community.

Julia Chaplin's new book GYPSET STYLE"covers contemporary art, fashiondesign, lifestyle and travel. Gypset," she explains, "is GYPSY + JET-SET. The book consists of profiles of wealthy, privileged, effete gazhe who live in exotic surroundings in exotic places around the world, the "true
Gypsies."


To give legitimacy to her book Ms. Chaplin includes a history of Roma, "although it is wholly derivative and quite inaccurate." states Professor Ian Hancock, acclaimed Roma author and teacher of Roma studies. "She includes a photograph of some French Romanies that she took, I suspect that they didn't know it would be used in a book, and that they received no compensation for it."

"To put this into prospective and help you understand our point of view, Substitute the word GYPSY with JEW or NEGRO. Would her book have been published? Would the public have accepted it? How are we expected to feel about this? " Dani Bamberger of NRADO.

The group ROMA IN AMERICAS which contains some of the Roma communities most distinguished educators, authors, activists and supporters has been coordinating letter writing campaigns and protests. "She did not reply to an e-mail from Hancock, NRADO (the National Romani Anti Discrimination Organization) or other supporters from the group Roma In Americas. Amazon.com did not print our "reader's comment" about this book and other comments we have made on various websites are being removed. This is an example of how we are treated." RIA group member.

"It's time people stopped playing at "gypsy." said Professor Ian Hancock.

REMOVED COMMENTS INCLUDE:

"Wow, for anyone looking for the modern-day Marie Antoinette Manifesto, look no further than this revolting and exploitative garbage. The "true Gypsies?" That should come as a tremendous relief to the heretofore-"true Roma" - you know, the ones whose children's lifeless bodies wash up on beaches in Italy, to be ignored by sunbathers as so much flotsam and jetsam? How about the ones who are being murdered and burned out of their homes in Hungary by nationalist, neo-Nazi thugs? No? If that doesn't ring any bills, go ahead and put on a colorful caftan and jetset around Europe, calling yourself a "Gypsy" (presumably because, like many Roma, you can't seem to hold down a job... even though in your case, it's because you choose to be idle, not because no one will hire you and you can't feed your children). I'm not an advocate of book-burning. Neither am I an advocate of burning down anyone's community."

You would not know Rom culture if it hit you in the head. Try for one second putting yourself in the shoes of the Roma and how exploitive such a book you have written would feel. Substitute the word Jew or Jewish for your questions for example: WHO'S THE ULTIMATE JEW SETTER IN YOUR EYES? SO IN SHORT, WHAT SHOULD ONE DO TO LIVE LIKE A JEWSETTER? Hmm does not sound so innocent to the ears does it. Was this the only way you could get this book published? Bring you book to the ERRC (European Roma Rights Committee) in Budapest and present it to 1000 Roma sitting in the audience and see what your response is.-Yale Strom"


Information about the book can be found at:
http://www.factio-magazine.com/profiles/detail.cfm?article_id=06084425
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