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Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Adidas' JS Roundhouse Mids: Slavery Sneaks?

Posted by Marjorie Skinner on Tue, Jun 19, 2012 at 12:14 PM

The latest dust-up in the sneaker world comes courtesy of Adidas, who recently posted photos of their latest collaboration with Jeremy Scott, the JS Roundhouse Mids:

sneakers-of-the-day3.jpg
  • The Daily What

The sneakers (which, firstly, are nowhere near as cool as the Scott x Adidas' pièce de résistance, IMHO, these; and, secondly, all icky association aside, they look really tricky and uncomfortable to wear) were accompanied by the tag line, "Got a sneaker game so hot you lock your kicks to your ankles?"

The internet responded in immediate uproar, accusing the sneakers of riffing on the shackles used on African American slaves (which seems overly specific, since they also look like the shackles seen in depictions of Native American slaves, Shanghaied sailors, and pretty much every other kind of slave or prisoner ever, from the Renaissance, to the Spanish Inquisition, to Game of Thrones). Adidas responded, saying, "Jeremy Scott is renowned as a designer whose style is quirky and lighthearted and his previous shoe designs for Adidas Originals have, for example, included panda heads and Mickey Mouse. Any suggestion that this is linked to slavery is untruthful.” However, soon after they decided to cancel the shoe, planned to debut in August, altogether.

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