Michael B. Jordan agrees to rename his J'Ouvert rum after Nicki Minaj explains cultural appropriation

23 June 2021, 11:37

The actor has agreed to change his rum line name after he was accused of cultural appropriation - assisted by Nicki Minaj.

Michael B. Jordan has been accused of cultural appropriation after announcing his recently launched rum line 'J'Ouvert'.

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The 34-year-old actor came under fire on social media users for using the term, despite not being Trinbagonian or Caribbean.

Michael B. Jordan caused a stir on social media after revealing his rum line's name is 'J'Ouvert' – a highly enriched historical cultural meaning for Trinbagonians and Carribbeans.
Michael B. Jordan caused a stir on social media after revealing his rum line's name is 'J'Ouvert' – a highly enriched historical cultural meaning for Trinbagonians and Carribbeans. Picture: Getty

On Tuesday (Jun 22) Nicki Minaj, 38, chimed in on the cultural appropriation claims. The Trinidadian star doubted that Jordan meant any harm, but also urged him to change the name of his rum line.

Taking heed of the public backlash, Jordan shared a simple text post to his Instagram Stories responding to the criticism.

The Black Panther actor wrote: 'I just wanna say on behalf of myself & my partners, our intention was never to offend or hurt a culture (we love & respect) & hoped to celebrate & shine a positive light on' he wrote.

'Last few days has been a lot of listening. A lot of learning & engaging in countless community conversations...'

Michael B. Jordan releases a statement following the backlash of his rum line name.
Michael B. Jordan releases a statement following the backlash of his rum line name. Picture: Instagram

He continued: 'We hear you. I hear you & want to be clear that we are in the process of renaming. We sincerely apologize & look forward to introducing a brand we can all be proud of,' he concluded.'

Before MBJ's statement, Nick Minaj became one of the highest-profile people chiming in on the cultural appropriation claims sparked by the alcohol label.

Nicki Minaj gives her thoughts on Michael B. Jordan's alcohol label 'J'Ouvert'.
Nicki Minaj gives her thoughts on Michael B. Jordan's alcohol label 'J'Ouvert'. Picture: Instagram/@nickiminaj

Taking to Instagram, the 'Anaconda' rapstress shared a a post from another Instagram account describing the history of the J'Ouvert tradition and its roots in Trinidadian and Caribbean culture.

In her caption, she wrote: 'I'm sure MBJ didn't intentionally do anything he thought Caribbean ppl would find offensive — but now that you are aware, change the name & continue to flourish & prosper,' she wrote, adding an emoji for the flag of Trinidad and Tobago. 

Minaj was born in Saint James in Trinidad and Tobago. She moved to New York City when she was five.

Minaj was born in Saint James in Trinidad and Tobago. The little star later moved to New York City when she was five.
Minaj was born in Saint James in Trinidad and Tobago. The little star later moved to New York City when she was five. Picture: Getty

Social media users expressed that the name J'Ouvert, which originates from the French word 'jour ouvert', meaning day break or morning, and signals the start of Carnival. It began in the 1800s and is still a global celebration amongst Caribbean people.

Brooklyn and Boston Carnival celebrations are very popular in the Northeastern United States.  

Many critics took offence to Jordan's trademark filing as well as him not having any ties to the heavily cultured word.

See other responses to MBJ's rum line name reveal announcement below.

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