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Rihanna as Egypt’s Queen Nefertiti? Vogue Arabia thinks so

JEDDAH: Vogue Arabia is facing fresh backlash on social media over its latest cover.
The magazine has yet again been accused of cultural appropriation as it released its November cover featuring Barbadian singer Rihanna dressed as Egypt’s Queen Nefertiti, with some claiming that Vogue Arabia perpetuated the notion that black and African people are interchangeable.
“Um cultural appropriation by someone from Barbados ... aren’t White people mostly accused of doing this ... nice to see someone else doing it,” wrote @ChefSJ
Another user, Marie Rocha (@MyDailyPosts) tweeted: “I love Rihanna, but I’ve met some stunning Egyptians that could have paid homage to Queen Nefertiti.”
Queen Nefertiti was one of the most powerful women in ancient Egypt almost 3,500 years ago. She was renowned for her beauty and is believed to have brought radical change to Egypt along with her husband Pharaoh Akhenaten.
“We are dedicating the issue to strong and dynamic women who are changing the world,” Vogue Arabia Editor-in-Chief Manuel Arnaut wrote in the editor’s letter. “Rihanna, our cover star, is one of them. Not only is she one of the most successful pop icons ever, shaping the entertainment industry with her powerful tunes and unique sense of style, she is also an advocate for diversity.”
The star appears on the cover wearing Gucci paired with a custom Faeth Millinery-designed headpiece in a stylish homage to Queen Nefertiti.
The pop star has an adoration for the Egyptian queen, and has her iconic bust tattooed on her ribcage.
So far, neither Vogue Arabia nor Rihanna has responded to the controversy.
Earlier, Gigi and Bella Hadid saw similar backlash for posing for Vogue Arabia.