First it was the Dove body wash ad that caused a stir depicting a Black woman next to a Latina woman who was standing next to a White woman. Behind the Black woman is the ashy dry skin while the Latina woman is directly in the middle and the White woman is in front of the “perfect, beautiful” skin.
Naomi Campbell is crying foul and considering a lawsuit against the Cadburry company, though they have since removed all circulation of the ad. Campbell says, “I am shocked! It’s upsetting to be described as chocolate, not just for me, but for all black women and black people. I do not find any humor in this. It is insulting and hurtful.”
If anything the Cadburry ad is referring to Naomi Campbell’s alleged bad temper and the fact that she likes to throw cell phones at people without warning. I highly doubt that Cadburry is making a racist statement. In my opinion, they are slyly saying that she’s a Bitch! Nothing more, nothing less.
Perhaps Cadburry should have let Naomi in on the joke if they were going to use her name in the ad, but other than that, I see no grounds for a lawsuit. Furthermore, since her last name is not used in the ad, Cadburry could be talking about Naomi, the head chocolate lady at the Cadburry offices.
Let’s backtrack to Black people being called “chocolate”. I’ve never heard it used in an offensive way; not saying that Naomi Campbell didn’t experience some form of racism where the word “chocolate” may have been used, but I use “chocolate” to describe my skin and the beautiful skin of other Black people often.
I know that context is everything, but chocolate is delicious and craved by millions, so I just don’t see the negative connotation here. Again, I do not believe that Cadburry are even referring to her skin in this ad, but their use of the word “Diva” says to me that they think she is a difficult woman. They obviously had no idea just how difficult or clueless she would be.
UPDATE: The ad may actually be a slap in the face regarding Naomi Campbell’s involvement with “blood diamonds“.
- Naomi Campbell does not like being compared to a Cadbury chocolate bar (daveibsen.typepad.com)
- Chocolate ‘diva’ ad hurts, supermodel Naomi Campbell complains (cnn.com)
- Naomi Campbell to Sue Over Racist Chocolate Ad [Lawsuits] (gawker.com)