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Director Hits Back at Critics of Taylor Swift’s African Video

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(Reuters) – The director of Taylor Swift’s new music video set in Africa struck back on Wednesday at mounting criticism of the scarcity of black people in the mini-film and its romanticized portrayal of the continent.

“Wildest Dreams,” a love story filmed against a backdrop of giraffes, lions, waterfalls and stunning sunsets, has been viewed more than 15 million times since it was released on Monday to accompany the American pop superstar’s latest single.

Although Swift is donating all proceeds to the African Parks Foundation of America, critics have seized on the video as portraying a stereotyped colonial-era view of Africa.

“So thank you, Taylor Swift, for proving once again that African stereotypes are safe atop the pinnacle of American pop culture,” wrote Matt Carotenuto, who teaches African studies at New York state’s St. Lawrence University, in an article on Wednesday on Salon.com.

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