Was Cynthia Erivo's Met Gala Look A Reference To Tignon Laws?

Emmy, Grammy and Tony winner Cynthia Erivo attended the 2022 Met Gala in Louis Vuitton. She wore a bright white, tall headwrap decorated with minute pearls and a lace dress with a lengthy train. Erivo was styled by Jason Bolden and her ensemble was a call back to when Creole women in Louisiana were legally required to cover their hair. In response to the racist law (born of insecurity stemming from how Black women adorned their hair), Southern women swept their hair up with stunning headwraps.

The 2022 Met Gala’s theme was “Gilded Glamour,” a reference to America’s Gilded Age which began in 1870 and ended in 1900.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MAY 02: Cynthia Erivo attends “In America: An Anthology of Fashion,” the 2022 Costume Institute Benefit at The Metropolitan Museum of Art on May 02, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Taylor Hill/Getty Images)

According to Bitch Media, beginning in 1769, Louisiana women could purchase their freedom from slavery. With their new money and autonomy, they began to dress differently, specifically taking pride in their hair. They were also catching the eyes of men who were not Black. Hearing the constant criticism from White women, GovernorMiró concluded he could attempt to keep the peace in society and keep free Black women oppressed by demanding they cover up a source of their joy.

The law that forced Louisiana women to hide their hair was called “tignon law.” Tignon is a piece of cloth specifically worn as a turban. The 1786 law was enacted by Louisiana’s governor, Esteban Rodriguez Miró.

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