Exeter, Devon UK • May 21, 2024 • VOL XII

Exeter, Devon UK • [date-today] • VOL XII
Home LifestyleCulture Vogue plans to release new Kamala Harris cover after initial controversy

Vogue plans to release new Kamala Harris cover after initial controversy

Maddy McKenna discusses how the original Vogue cover was deemed disrespectful
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Vogue plans to release new Kamala Harris cover after initial controversy

Image: Gage Skidmore, Wikimedia Commons

Maddy McKenna discusses how the original Vogue cover was deemed disrespectful

Vogue is set to release a limited print edition of the February issue with Kamala Harris on the cover, using a new photo in response to backlash caused by the original cover image. This was because of the widespread view that the image lacked respect for Harris, the vice-president-elect.

The limited edition of the magazine will be released after the inauguration ceremonies, when Harris becomes the first female vice-president of Black and south Asian descent.

The original image showcases Harris in a more casual black pant suit paired with black converse, causing outrage on social media. Followers of the Vogue account were questioning why Vogue had opted for this image as opposed to the more formal cover of Harris against a gold background wearing a powder blue Michael Kors suit.

Asked about the backlash, Robin Givhan (The Washington Post fashion critic) wrote:

Vogue robbed Harris of her roses … Nothing about the cover said, ‘wow.’ And sometimes, that’s all Black women want, an admiring and celebratory ‘wow’ over what they have accomplished.

Robin Givhan

As well as the informal clothing, queries were also raised over lighting, taking into account Harris’ skin tone. This is not the first incident where this has taken place, with issues raised regarding the lighting of gymnast Simone Biles’ photo last August.

In response, a Vogue spokesperson said: “In recognition of the enormous interest in the digital cover and in celebration of the historic moment, we will be publishing a limited number of special edition inauguration issues.”

Vogue’s Editor-in-chief, Anna Wintour, explained that the photo was chosen for its approachability. It was taken by Tyler Mitchell, the first African American photographer to shoot a US Vogue cover in 2018. However, in a discussion about the image’s negative reaction, Wintour stated: “I just want to reiterate that it was absolutely not our intention to diminish the importance of the vice-president-elect’s incredible victory.”

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