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Colorism in High Fashion

"Colorism in High Fashion" is a long-form essay by data scientist and software engineer Malaika Handa that examines 19 years of Vogue magazine covers (from 2000 to 2018) to try to determine how the publication represents women of all skin colors. Users can view a visual representation of the 262 female cover models by skin tone across the years, or filter by individual models to see when they appeared on Vogue's cover. One large takeaway is the pattern of increased variation after 2005. However, this increase appears to be due to the four times that actress and model Lupita Nyong'o appeared on Vogue's cover between 2012 and 2018. With this observation in mind, the article goes on to examine tokenism and points out that the magazine has employed "exactly one black photographer in 125 years of publication." The conclusion? Since Vogue first featured a black cover model in the 1970s, "ethnic diversity and representation is improving…[but] Vogue (and the entire fashion industry) can do better."
Archived Scout Publication URL
Scout Publication
Date of Scout Publication
April 3rd, 2020
Date Of Record Creation
March 12th, 2020 at 11:47am
Date Of Record Release
March 13th, 2020 at 8:57am
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