Blake Lively tried to stop Gawker from making fun of her pro-Antebellum editorial


I wasn’t going to write about this at first, but then it snowballed into a media story and now I sort of have to cover it, which sucks for Blake Lively. In between posting photos of her baby bump and trying to sell us beautiful ginger children, Blake Lively posted this weird editorial/layout/thing on her Preserve site. The editorial/post is called “The Allure of Antebellum.” Antebellum being the pre-Civil War era in the American South. As in, Blake wants to romanticize the era where ladies didn’t have the right to vote and human beings were sold like property. This is what was written in the post:

Georgia peaches, sweet tea, and the enticement of a smooth twang…we all love a bit of southern charm. These regional mainstays, along with an innate sense of social poise, evoke an unparalleled warmth and authenticity in style and tradition.

The term “Southern Belle” came to fruition during the Antebellum period (prior to the Civil War), acknowledging women with an inherent social distinction who set the standards for style and appearance. These women epitomized Southern hospitality with a cultivation of beauty and grace, but even more with a captivating and magnetic sensibility. While at times depicted as coy, these belles of the ball, in actuality could command attention with the ease of a hummingbird relishing a pastoral bloom.

Like the debutantes of yesteryear, the authenticity and allure still ring true today. Hoop skirts are replaced by flared and pleated A-lines; oversized straw toppers are transformed into wide-brimmed floppy hats and wool fedoras.

The prowess of artful layering -the southern way- lies in inadvertent combinations. From menswear-inspired overcoats to the fluidity of soft flowing separates, wrap yourself up in tactile layers that elicit a true sense of seasonal lure.

Embrace the season and the magic below the Mason-Dixon with styles as theatric as a Dixie drawl.

[From Preserve]

Now, do I think Blake meant anything rude, racist or nasty by this? Not at all. I think she’s a white lady who never considered the fact that she was romanticizing a period of time that many Americans consider to be part of the darkest in our history. Like, she’s seen Gone with the Wind 20 times and she’s never watched 12 Years A Slave.

I didn’t even care that much about the story/controversy because I thought it was about historical ignorance more than any conscious choice to align herself with the Confederacy. But then Blake made an even stupider mistake. Gawker had written a harsh critique of Blake’s “Allure of Antebellum” post and Blake’s lawyers sent a take-down notice to Gawker – see here. She was trying to shut down criticism of her stupid pro-Antebellum editorial. Is this just a rookie mistake? Because whenever I try to look through Preserve, I’m always struck by how disorganized it is, so much so I can’t even concentrate on the “message.” Maybe she should focus more on making Preserve more user-friendly?


Photos courtesy of Fame/Flynet.

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224 Responses to “Blake Lively tried to stop Gawker from making fun of her pro-Antebellum editorial”

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  1. Tiffany27 says:

    “Like, she’s seen Gone with the Wind 20 times and she’s never watched 12 Years A Slave”


    • SofiaS says:

      I never watched 12 years slave either.

      • RJ says:

        I think you missed the point SofiaS

      • Tiffany27 says:

        The whole point just went all the way over your head.
        It’s not about the film, it’s about the fact that she was completely oblivious to the fact that those “ladies of distinction” and their super cute clothes came about because of the blood, sweat, and tears and death of slaves. It was insensitive and just plain stupid.

      • MaddieH says:

        >>their super cute clothes came about because of the blood, sweat, and tears and death of slaves.
        So, 150 years later, little has changed?

      • Luciana says:

        Most western clothes are made in slave factories in Asia. Sad but true. Nothing has really changed.

    • starrywonder says:

      She is not that smart. Just based on her interviews and all it never occurred to her because she’s just not that smart. Not excusing her btw just saying. Also I am sick of hearing about her site. It is not user friendly and is a mess. Maybe she and Ryan can get back to actually acting in decent movies.

      • Mia V. says:

        Honey, she can’t act to save a life.

      • notlistening says:

        When have they ever acted in decent movies? And why would anyone want them in those when they can´t act?

      • Kip says:

        It’s so sad that in our society one has to be considered smart in order to be expected to realise what’s wrong “the allure of the antebellum.”

      • Bucky says:

        @kip EXACTLY

      • starrywonder says:

        @all of you I agree she sucks at acting but that is really the only thing she was known for until this horrible site came up.

      • Dolce crema says:

        Mia, she was perfect as Serena and she also was fine (same level as others) in the town.

      • homegrrl says:

        How can romanticizing a blatant and well known holocaust become excused because a grown woman is “just not that smart”. If a german female romanticized a nazi house party, would any of us say, “Oh sheeesh, she just didn’t see shindler’s list”. Blake Lively is a fully grown adult who has zero compassion or sensitivity. This isn’t a case of having watched the wrong movie.

    • Xantha says:

      She needs to watch 12 Years a Slave and pay special attention to Mrs. Epps and how she treated Patsy.

      Those “Southern Belles” Preserve is worshipping could be as vicious and malignant as their husbands who owned the plantations. Just because they hid their shit behind “fine manners” doesn’t make them any less cruel.

      • Petunia says:

        All of this negativity based on generality is as bad as the very thing you’re criticizing. Seriously, relax. She’s by no means making light of slavery. Believe it or not, slavery is not the South’s only legacy.

      • fritanga says:

        But it surely is the South’s most loathsome and glaring legacy, isn’t it? The South even fought a long and bloody war to protect its right to continue it.

        And for the record, by parroting Margaret Mitchell’s (and incidentally, Paula Deen’s) candy-coated view of the antebellum South, Lively is doing what Julia Sugarbaker abhorred:

        “You just want to sell the myth………the myth of the Old South. You all know that myth, don’t ya? Happy darkies singing in the field while Miss Scarlet primps around throwing hissy fits. Well that’s an insult. It isn’t the South. It’s an insult to all the people who lived and died here not so very long ago.”

      • Mira says:


        But that doesn’t mean that every time one references anything pertaining to the old South that you also have to bring up slavery. Blake may be callous about America’s slavery atrocities – who knows (I suspect you think so because she is white and blonde) – but that doesn’t mean this particular instance is representative of that. Everyone here is just trying to shoehorn it in.

        Honestly, Gawker is a sensationalist media outlet akin to Hearst yellow journalism and you all fell for it.

      • Geekychick says:

        This is a reply to Petunia and Mira:
        Antebellum belle was a direct product of avery: the existence of slaves made the economy lf southern “nobility”, without them there would be no huge profit, and no mone for those finely cut linen, big hoopls for dresses and all those giant mansions. Southern belles flirted on the front porch and whipped their slaves on the back one. 1/3 of the whites of south had slaves: that is more than 3 million of persons who were treated and thought of as animal. There is no part of Antebellum period specufic to that era that hasn’t been based on the slavery and economical impact it had. And don’t forget-even those whites without slaves still fought in the civil war for the right of the south to own them. Let’s be clear about that. I’m from Europe and even I learned that in school.

      • meh says:

        @Petunia- “slavery is not the South’s only legacy.” Yes, but any legacy from the old south was built on the backs of slaves. The social, cultural, and fashion (?) legacy Blake seems to be describing were only possible because of the immense wealth created by the convenient use of free labor. Ignoring or minimizing that reality is at best ignorant and at worst casually racist.

      • Dena says:

        Ok. I won’t bring up slavey. I’ll just bring up the poor white dirt, cotton, and hemp farmers and their dirty, hungry children and the hard scramble lives they lead. Why fiddle-lee-dee . . .

        It’s hard to excuse her romanticizing a period of American & regional history that was horrible for so many people on so many human levels. She can be a proud southerner (if that’s where she’s from) without mythologizing such a tragic period in history.

    • SofiaS says:

      • Dena says:

        *****forcing people to feel ashamed of their heritage and making them feel like slavery and racism resulted from the individual choices of their ancestors does nothing but fuel resent****

        As stated upthread slavery & racism IS the result of individual choices now as in the past. And by making the claim that slavery has always existed DOES NOT exonerate one’s ancestors from the INDIVIDUAL choices they made or the actions they took (passively or otherwise) to either perpetuate it or gain benefit from that practice–either directly or indirectly. Attempting to place the practice of American slavery in some sort of global (beginning of time) context does not allow Americans to divorce slavery from its history or attempt to lessen the impact it’s had on future generations or even to play some sort of game of cognitive dissonance either. It happened. It was brutal. It was race-based. It was practiced on a massive scale in the south due to many reasons but sustained primarily because of the south’s agrarian nature & it made people rich by fueling the international economy. There r many other factors 2. . .

        But . . . In loving your “heritage,” just as u would with a beloved relative, accept that there r deep and SHAMEFUL events that although they happened in the past they continue to warp, scare & distort. Accept that many people benefited and continue to BENEFIT residually from the actions of that beloved relative BUT now that u know the extent of the situation walk forward into the future as a proud member of your family who refuses to continue perpetuate, enable or excuse those actions & where possible refuses to directly benefit from those actions as well. If that were my heritage that’s how I would try to move beyond that unhealed psychic & regional/national wound that still festers today.

      • Petunia says:

        In response to “meh”. Odd that “reply” is randomly available to comments. Also applicable to , ” starry wonder”. Do you honestly believe that anyone would excuse slavery? Did you read my posts? Are you that rabid that you would interpret anything I posted as a thumbs up for slavery? Oh wait, silly question. Of course you would twist my words to create some ridiculous extremist politically incorrect statement. At this point I’m over trying to rationally debate. Again, slavery is not the south’s only legacy. If you disagree and feel that is all that defines the south than that’s your right. To disregard any culture based on a horrible way of life that took place at the time, in my humble opinion is ignorant. Those of you that insist on the fact that antebellum and old South should only be remembered as a horrific lack of human decency, fine. I challenge you to dig deeper and learn , oh forget it….I guess the fact that wealthy Americans, from all regions that employ illegal immigrants to save money, paying them little as possible, no benefits, knowing they’re in no position to complain, should know never to speak fondly of where they live or their lifetime. Right? Have any of you watched the news lately? The inhumanity of our times is just as dark as it ever was. Guess 50 years from now, some vapid starlet should steer clear of waxing nostalgic about 2014.
        Seems like as long as your discrimination and judgement is specific to white conservatives, gloves are off. Open season. The respect you demand is not expected from you.

    • call_in says:

      I’m originally from Alabama and I just can’t accept that hoop skirts are racist. It’s pretty typical in smaller cities for teenage girls to dress up in traditional Antebellum “belle” dresses and act as hostesses at city functions. My grandmother made my belle dress and I loved wearing it, lace gloves, petticoats, hoop skirt, and all. In my opinion, forcing people to feel ashamed of their heritage and making them feel like slavery and racism resulted from the individual choices of their ancestors does nothing but fuel resent. Furthermore, characterizing the Antebellum south ONLY as a nation of slavery leads to the false conclusion that because the CSA was defeated, so was the institution of slavery. Slavery has existed for thousands of years and continues to thrive in the modern world—attacking the fashion preferences of women in the 1800s as iconography of institutionalized violence not only seems like a stretch, but also has the potential to minimize the humanitarian injustices that are being perpetrated right now against living people who could actually be impacted by this kind of high-profile media attention. As an aside, I wonder if the commenters view the Great Pyramids with the same disgust.

      • spaniard says:

        Nobody really knows what kind of workforce was used to construct pyramids, even Zahi Hawass, who is the most famous and recognised archeologist, says that they were done by skilled workers who where payed. Sorry for the boring explanation but I love ancient Egypt history.

        Maybe it’s better to use another example in that case.

        Regarding Blake and her “editorial”, well I can only think what would have happened if Gwyneth had written something like that. Instead of calling her “naive” or “not that smart” people would have asked her to be shot.

      • Kiddo says:

        She was romanticizing the entire scene of the time, not just hoop skirts.
        Using slaves in historical or modern times shouldn’t be palatable, regardless of the era. But pre-civil war culture, specifically for the rich ladies on southern plantations, was propelled economically by slavery. She’s alluding to the genteel upper-crust of that time period. She’s calling these debutantes of the time period ‘authentic and alluring’. There is no way to envision this particular demographic of society without the context of slavery, especially since she notes it was PRE-CIVIL war.

        Why not give props to current-day southern ladies? Why go THERE?
        Also, there are things that we learn from history that we should have a sense of shame with. This is so that we don’t forget and consequently repeat it.

      • S says:

        @Call_in Driving through Eufala, AL when I was young on my way to Florida for spring break during the historical homes tour was one of my favorite memories as a girl. I loved seeing all the huge homes and the girls dressed up in hoop skirts and lace gloves and hats.

      • Bee says:

        Exactly @kiddo. Embrace the current southern female. As a former one myself, I see it as a lady who knows the horrors of the past and is proud to be a part of making a better future. A forward thinking American with style and grace, embracing decorum and hospitality, but realizing there is nothing romantic about our history. One who watches “Gone With the Wind” 22 times and is bothered each time by the ugliness and remembers that we will not soon be forgiven. One that goes out of her way to be educated by being the first to see movies like “12 Years a Slave” and encourage her friends & family to do the same. Rocking a certain fashion but never ever a rebel flag. Blake Lively reminds me of why it’s so important to think before you speak! Especially when you have such a big audience. Girl sounds so dumb.

      • inthekitchen says:

        @call_in — I’m a little confused by your comment: “…making them feel like slavery and racism resulted from the individual choices of their ancestors”
        …isn’t that EXACTLY why slavery and racism occurred? Because individual people decided to participate? Plenty of southern and northern people chose NOT to participate in the buying and selling of other human beings or in making and abiding by racist laws (written and unwritten)…I don’t think any families were forced to own slaves – it was a choice that individual people made.

        I don’t mean to single you out, but that comment makes no sense to me (perhaps I’m reading it incorrectly). I also think, sure, there are terrible things happening now and before and after American slavery…but that shouldn’t make what happened in this country any less disgusting/tragic/horrific/important to remember and discuss.

        Also, I think they have pretty much proven that slaves (in the sense of American slavery) did not build the pyramids ( The evidence shows the people who built them were treated much more humanely than American slaves were and were organized laborers.

      • Mel M says:

        I can see both side of it. On one hand would these ladies have all of these niceties without slavery? On the other hand this was mans world and no matter how much a women may have wanted out of that life (I’m sure gere were some) she really had no choice. Yes I’m aware there were plenty of women who I’m sure didn’t think twice of owning/using salves but there were also some that thought it was wrong and hated it but there was no way they could’ve done anything about it, they had no rights themselves.

      • MadameJ says:

        @ call-in I had to laugh and cringe at call-in’s post. I’m in Alabama and all you have to do is ask a black person what they think of Alabama’s ‘historical” reenactments and representations of the Antebellum crap. The only reason a woman could wear a belle dress was because she had three slaves fanning her in the southern heat and three more tying those damn hoops around her corseted waist. In fact I will go even further and say that YES the whole hoop skirted nonsense was the epitomy of southern racism among antebellum women. The women who wore them didn’t lift a damn finger for themselves and were proud of it. I will also say that if you don’t feel shame for the practice of slavery in your heritage there is something seriously wrong with you. I for one have no problem characterizing the antebellum south ONLY as a nation of slavery because for a whole lot of slaves that’s exactly what is was. And furthermore, yes the pyramids and a lot of Egyptian history is viewed with disgust because of slavery, ask a Jewish person.

      • HH says:

        @Call_in – “I’m originally from Alabama and I just can’t accept that hoop skirts are racist.” >>>> If that’s the connection you made, then you’re part of the problem. Waxing poetic about the antebellum South is the REAL issue. Southerners seem to reminisce on this time period, while wanting others to “get over” American Slavery. The “greatness” of the South rested on the backs of the slaves. We don’t get to cherry pick the parts of history people remember (at least not today). Slavery was not just a bad thing that happened; it was a conscious choice. A choice that represented the disgusting depths of immorality and evil that are possible within the human soul. 200 years of oppression with Africans being treated as less than human; being sold as property being seen as less than the family pet. Yet, people want to reserve these truths for history books?! EFF THAT.

      • soapyme says:

        “It’s pretty typical in smaller cities for teenage girls to dress up in traditional Antebellum “belle” dresses and act as hostesses at city functions.”

        I.e., it’s typical to be nostalgic for a time when black people were enslaved.

      • MoxyLady007 says:

        Imagine of she had said “hilter’s girlfriend and all those SS officer’s wives had the cutest clothes and were such great home makers and entertainers. Happy nostalgic sigh. WWII nostalgia”.

        Do you see it now? It’s the same.

      • Betty says:

        @Call-in For one thing, the clothes in this spread had nothing to do with the Antebellum period, so why even play up that period at all? Moreover, Preserve praised Southern Belles for being women of “social distinction,” completely ignoring that this happened because of slave labor. The post also mentions the Mason-Dixon line, the line used to delineate slave states from free states. Anyone with a shred of knowledge about U.S. history can’t help but to think of slavery when reading the Preserve post. In addition, slavery existed for thousands of years but not in the white supremacist and generational form that it existed in in the South.

      • call_in says:

        I think it’s just a touchy subject all around. I left my home years ago to live abroad, and for me the image of the “South” that Blake is (not-so-tactfully) trying to conjure is something that, for better or worse, I am a descendent of. Some of the things that I most love and miss about my community (importance of porch-sitting, manners, and friendliness, to name a few) are part of a longstanding tradition of etiquette. Now, the Antebellum period is the entire 100-year timeframe between the Revolutionary and Civil wars. It’s worth mentioning that it took that long for America, as a country, to decide that slavery was wrong enough to be made illegal. I just have a problem with anything traditionally “Southern” being automatically linked with racism or slaveholders. Since any of us alive today had absolutely nothing to do with that issue one way or another, it seems silly for me to have to live with any kind of shame for my heritage. The Nazis are actually a good comparison—how much of dark history is based on personal decisions of individual people and how much is cultural zeitgeist? Should all Germans be held responsible for two world wars and the Holocaust? Clearly not, most weren’t even born at that point! If you have a rosy, clearly-documented history of ancestors who always made the right choices, maybe you wouldn’t understand, but growing up in my situation I always found it better to educate myself and work to be a better person than those who came before me, but not at the expense of ignoring or demonizing my heritage.

      • Petunia says:


      • Kiddo says:

        @call_in, Actually, Germany is very sensitive to the subject of the Holocaust and glorifying anything remotely connected with the Nazi period. They have laws regarding speech, even. Does that mean that they should feel shame for everything from German heritage? No. Should they remember what happened during WWII forever? Yes, they should. You can’t separate and pick and choose history.

        She is talking about the hoop skirt in the south which is a somewhat narrower time frame than what you asserted :

        1846 David Hough, Jr patented the first hoop skirt in the United States (patent US4584). In 1858, IRJ Mann’s patent the first latticework of strings and hoops in the United States (patent US20681).
        In 1858, the American W.S. Thomson greatly facilitated the development of the cage crinoline by developing an eyelet fastener to connect the steel crinoline hoops with the vertical tapes descending from a band around the wearer’s waist. The invention was patented in the United States (patent US21581). The landmark Dred Scott v. Sandford court case of 1857 declared that slaves were not citizens but were property. Slavery issues could not be avoided as the abolition movement grew. Slave riots and rebellions occurred throughout the South, and the federal government had to address the problem on issues of statehood and population.

        So when she conjures up the hoop skirt and the genteel upper-crust, it is within a range of 20 years or less, (I’d argue exactly at that time: 1858) when the south fought to keep ownership of people. Are you responsible for that time period as someone who lives today? Of course not. But the whitewashing of history is never good. We have to accept where we came from, the good, the bad and the ugly.

        Rather than making this about a dreadful time period, why not discuss a long history of manners?

      • Geekychick says:

        @ Call in: about your second reply: german kids have designated books for reading in school: 11 out of 12 are about WWII and the Holocaust. The kids are drilled and drilled about how wrong and awful it was; and yes, german people accepted their guilt as a nation and they will never deny it if you ask them(except if they are neo-nazis). So your comparison doesn’t really stand. I’msorry, but you are a part of the problem, it seems. People can be kind and full of hospitality without referencing Antebellum period, I thought that is a universal human characteristic.

      • Kiddo says:

        Adding: If she would have just said “Southern,” without the other loaded crap, it wouldn’t have been so evocative of something negative.

      • Lapin says:

        Anyone who’s paid close attention in History class would also know Germany as a whole was held accountable for WWI. Treaty of Versailles ring a bell? They paid a massive price for their role in the war, which threw them in a massive recession and inherently lead to WWII.
        After WWII they once again were held accountable, as people were sentenced and imprisoned etc etc. Also modern Germany is well aware of the role their ancestors had in the war, especially those who are directly related to the key figures of the Nazi regime. Shame is a common feeling amongst them. German companies who had historical ties also own up to their role and have done their best to repair their mistakes. Only a handful of German romanticize that era, and guess what, those are usually devout neo-nazi’s.

        Honestly Germany is the worst example one can pick, if you want a country which romanticizes their history and denies any wrongdoing, I’d go for Japan.

      • Veronica says:

        Stop it. It’s not about the hoop skirts or the sweet tea or the goddamn peaches. The problem is the term antebellum and the time period it references. Slavery may not be the South’s only legacy, but it sure as shit is one hell of a blight on our history, and it’s impact is still being felt on our nation more than a century later. Blacks were still living it into the 60s, and they’re still dealing with the legacy of racism today. Race-based slavery was outlawed in 1865.

        Eighteen. Sixty. Five.

        That’s 139 years. If that doesn’t put that in perspective for you, that’s not even the lifetimes of two grandparents put together.

        Part of being white means being aware of your privilege, and that means being aware of your history. That means you don’t get to talk about how great and elegant antebellum women were without acknowledging that those women were participating in and benefitting from the institution of slavery.

        Malicious? No. Tone deaf as all hell? Absolutely.

    • Betty says:

      Except that some people, like mother-in-law, who fit in this category are indeed racist. They haven’t watched 12 Years a Slave because they couldn’t care less about black people and romanticize films such as Gone With the Wind because they continue to believe that black people are beneath them. Ignorance and racism do often go hand in hand.

  2. Kiddo says:

    No one ever seems to learn lessons from the Streisand effect.

    • Sixer says:

      I don’t know about the Streisand effect, I’m reeling from the bleedin’ PURPLE PROSE effect. Jeepers, she’s given me an ‘eadache.

      “ease of a hummingbird relishing a pastoral bloom”

      That’s a Bulwer-Lytton award right there, isn’t it? I hope she never gets a ghost writer and publishes a romantic novel. Cos that would be graduation to a Bad Sex award for sure.

      • Mia4S says:

        ““ease of a hummingbird relishing a pastoral bloom””

        Even worse @Sixer? Read the Lainey story linked below. It looks like some of that drivel was “borrowed”…*cough* plagerised *cough*.

      • Kiddo says:


      • Esmom says:

        Purple prose indeed…trying to read her words makes me stabby. But bad writing aside, she needs someone who can vet her content if she’s not smart enough to know when she might be offensive.

      • Sixer says:

        @Mia “Don’t let alliteration get you into trouble.”

        Too late, too late!

        Oh lordy. My cheeks ache from laughing. It’s not just purple prose; it’s PLAGIARISED purple prose. She can’t even copy in good taste. That is my favourite thing of the day.

      • Katenotkatie says:

        God, the word choice is appalling. I guess if she can’t pay someone to point out her egregious (and plagiarized!) historical ignorance, she can’t pay someone who knows how to use a dictionary.

        Drinking game alert: take a drink from your Lynchburg lemonade/southern-themed cocktail of choice every time Blake misuses an SAT vocabulary word.

      • AlexandriaTheGreat says:

        So much thesaurus abuse.

      • mia girl says:

        Ha! Try saying that five times fast.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        “It’s not just purple prose; it’s PLAGIARISED purple prose.”

        I think she just wanted to improve upon her thing for alliteration.

    • L says:

      Exactly. No one would have read of this story or known anything about it if her lawyer hadn’t made a big deal about it.

  3. Lulu says:

    Historical ignorance is not really an excuse for anything. Just saying

    • MaiGirl says:

      Thank you! In 2014, when you can get information on your phone in milliseconds, there is no excuse for this kind of stupidity and insensitivity. It just proves how privileged some people are that they do not get how offensive this romantic view of slaveowners and plantation life is! And no, it can’t just be about the clothes when the whole write-up is about this southern fiction.

    • Mira says:

      I mean this as a legitimate question.

      When are we NOT oppressing others in some way? The argument that no one should romanticize that time period because of the atrocities applies to well, every time period.

      • bonsai mountain says:

        Yes but only African slaves were chattel, as in dehumanized based on their race, the most obvious marker being the colour of their skin. Only African slaves were not compensated, meaning they had no means of subverting the institutional arrangements that kept them oppressed. And only descendants of those African slaves continue to suffer as a result of this kind of mentality TODAY. That’s why examples of Roman slaves, Egyptian slaves, Holocaust victims and Irish immigrants etc. do not work in comparison. It’s about the unique context.

      • MyCatLoves TV says:

        I had Cherokee ancestors who were forced on a little walk… may have heard of it: The Trail of Tears. When we really stop and think about what it took for any of us to get to be alive at this moment, we should be honored in the courage and strength our ancestors – from wherever they came – proved of themselves. To be ignorant and dishonor those who were abused should never be tolerated. In my humble opinion anyway.

  4. Jasna says:

    Is the group Lady Antebellum also offensive? I’m really asking because I’m not American and I just recently found out about the implications of the word.

    • Stef Leppard says:

      Not necessarily. Blake is specifically referencing the antebellum period before the civil war but “antebellum” just means pre-war and is not an offensive term.

    • Renee says:

      Hi Jasna,


      For the same reasons as noted in the above article. Along similar lines, The Dixie Chicks name could also be considered offensive.

      • Petunia says:

        With enough diligence, I’m certain one can misinterpret/ take offense regarding your average Readers Digest lasagna recipe.

    • QQ says:

      My twitter Timeline is mostly POC and Black people and YES! Any time they get invited to shows/perform they get ROASTED by it …someone actually called it “racist olden times hour” or “string em up” and what shocks me is that Me not being from here i KNOW the implications of that and the stupid rebel flag but they dont?! Oh Ok!!

      Im also 110% glad she is getting called out for this… a Lot of racists and “oh get over it” people rely on silence and romanticizing the Genteel ways of the south to bury that crap up… And they need to know in 2014 it just wont do anymore

    • L says:

      Lady Antebellum claims their name is about the pre-civil war architecture apparently. Which they only started saying after folks got upset about the name.

      So I think they just liked the sound of it, and didn’t think about what it might mean.

      • Yup, Me says:

        I call bullsh!t there, folks.

      • AlexandriaTheGreat says:

        Except the lead singer has the # 14 tattooed on her wrist–which, she says stands for the age difference between her and her sister….BUT….it also stands for the “Fourteen Words”, which is a phrase used predominantly by white nationalists….

      • QQ says:

        Dearest Alexandria and Yup, I see your calls of Bullshit, and The 14 words tatt explanation (this shit is awful!) and comfortably raise my brow a la “you see what I mean about this crap?” while on my perch of calling this gross racist stuff dressed up as tweet/quaint southern pride/ architectural nostalgia about the beauty of the plantations what it is while Strange Fruit plays on the background

      • MaiGirl says:

        That doesn’t even make any sense! Why on earth would you get the age difference between you and a sibling tattooed on your body? Sounds like a very lame explanation. Googling to find out more about these shenanigans.

      • Ginger says:

        QQ…I love your use of Strange Fruit! So appropriate. I didn’t know about the 14 words tattoo or the explanation of it. Thanks for the information. (Most sincerely)

      • lower-case deb says:

        some time ago, when that one song by them got replayed again and again on the radio here in my country (can’t remember the name exactly… something something need you now?) the radio DJ read a trivia about the tattoo: the age difference thing cropped up, and also he said that 14 is the total points you get when you lay down “Antebellum” on normal Scrabble squares.

        i thought the age difference thing made very little to no sense (out of all the things meaningful between siblings….), the Scrabble thing made a bit more sense.

        but this is the first time i heard about the fourteen words thing (it’s not a common knowledge in my country), taken together with the specific time the band name refers to… it makes sense too.

        to be honest, i think the radio and listeners in my country honestly doesn’t know about the Antebellum and significance of the number. but now i know.

      • Sam says:

        I always thought she explained it by saying she was 14 when she decided to pursue music as a career, which is why she has it. Although I do see how when you take that combined with the band’s really iffy name, you could certainly infer something else….

      • QQ says:

        L to piggyback off your point about Lady FunOldRacistTimes and the nonsense Purple-Indigo-Dark navy Thesaurus abuse heavy this Mocktress was trying to make …can we for a second with the ridiculous mental and verbal contortionism that it takes to make this and the whole “southern pride” “confederal flag” stuff pass the sniff test?!? Is almost like being in a room with a white ass elephant and carefully parsing an describing everything you see in the room while the elephant is taking a madsive sh*t but refusing to acknowledge there is an elephant, much less is he white or pooping in this very room LOL

    • littlestar says:

      Weirdly enough, I just wondered the same thing, read your question, and then Lady Antbellum came on the radio!

  5. TaterSkank says:

    Paula Deen is cackling on her butter soaked veranda.

    Martha Stewart is still knitting shanks with Goop’s name on them and was not available for comment.

    • Kiddo says:


    • Abbott says:

      I can’t wait for Reese Witherspoon to finally launch her lifestyle website.

      • Kiddo says:

        Reds, whites and blues, stars and stripes, combined with the magnetic and captivating draw of bourbon and cars, “The American Citizen”.

      • TaterSkank says:

        I think the dudes need to start lifestyle sites.
        Johnny Depp “Scarves. Their romantic history”
        Matthew McConaughey “Fall Bongos and Autumn pot parties! Recipes on pg 2,245”

      • Kiddo says:

        George Clooney, “The Famewhore Wedding edition” “How to pose while making photos appear candid. Invite guests who make your wedding stomach-able: Bill Murray.”

        Kanye West, “Genius!, dog-bite!, sweater ruffle! dentist! bingo! zeppoles!” on How to communicate clearly with your audience.

      • Aussie girl says:

        The American citizen site , launched by, “don’t you know who I am”.

      • lucy2 says:

        The antebellum theme should not be used or romanticized, especially for a vanity project like Preserve clearly is.
        But if an actress was going to go with a whole “Southern charm and style thing”, it would make more sense from Reese, who actually is from the South. Blake was born and raised in Los Angeles, right? I don’t know why, but to me that almost makes it even worse. She has no personal history or connection to it, she’s just flat out adopting it with no regard to the actual history or anything.

    • Jegede says:

      Blake’s parents are from the South.

      I remember it because there was a piece on famous Southerners during election 2012 and they referenced her, Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood, Jonny Depp

      I think her family only moved to LA before she was born

  6. Mia4S says:

    Stupid. Incredibly stupid. That legal letter took it from a minor story on Gawker to no doubt hundreds of click bait stories titled with some variation of “Blake Lively racist?”. Her PR game is not what it once was.

    • Mel M says:

      It seems like it was a knee jerk reaction and now they are probably regretting it.

    • Mia V. says:

      She could’ve taken the criticism with grace, but decided to act like someone who can’t be criticized and it makes her sound even more stupid.

  7. Algernon says:

    Wait, is she selling children made of ginger, or actual red-headed tots?

  8. Godwina says:

    “These women epitomized Southern hospitality with a cultivation of beauty and grace, but even more with a captivating and magnetic sensibility.”

    …plus a whole lot of help from their slaves, who were making those cakes and mint juleps in the kitchen. Seriously, this is the passage that tips it for me. SUPER unaware.

    • Seapharris7 says:

      Come talk to us after you’ve birthed 8 kids with no real medical care or pain meds & can’t have anymore plastic surgery…

      • Petunia says:

        Yeah, because you yourself have been through this. Everything in history, good or bad is responsible for you be able to type your opinions on an entertainment blog. You don’t know suffering on that level anymore than she does.

    • Kiddo says:

      “These women epitomized Southern hospitality with a cultivation of beauty and grace, but even more with a captivating and magnetic sensibility.”

      This sentence is so very empty in spite of all the words.

      • lana86 says:

        lol, that whole piece is unreadable – like a 12year old was copypasting pretty words together trying to write an essay

      • Esmom says:

        Kiddo, I know, seriously.

        lana86, spot on. I was thinking it was on par with much of my high school freshman’s English class’s attempts at being descriptive but it’s worse.

      • Ag says:

        antebellum word salad.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        Exactly, Kiddo.

        “antebellum word salad.”
        So funny, Ag! 😀

      • Petunia says:

        @ geeky hoc, I respectfully disagree that the fashion was a result of slavey. As I wrote down thread, no doubt, slavery was commerce and because of the work of slaves, the cotton, tobacco, rice, etc, thrived. The crops were what brought in the money. Obviously, the absolutely mistreated and taken advantage of slaves were the backbone. It’s certainly a fair argument that a southern belle’s hoop skirt was provided by an underage slave girl , who was repeatedly raped by belle’s husband who became pregnant, and with no medical care, gave birth to a future slave in a cotton field. Plz know I am in no means making light of the atrocity which humans subjected fellow humans to. It was unfortunately, an acceptable way of life. These women knew nothing different like the slaves knew nothing different. Again, without the mistakes of our ancestors, we wouldn’t have a map in which to learn from. All of you that hate on Geirge w. bush, would it be fair decades from now for someone to wax nostalgic about the 90’s culture and be beat up by liberals stating that complimenting anything that happened in the Bush admin, is condoning everything that happened? ( yeah, run on sentence, I know).
        @ geeky chic, respectfully, you’re arguement is that fashion at that time was a result of slavery so it should be dismissed. Are you aware of the sweatshops and deplorable working conditions that produce the clothing cheaply sold to the masses? Does one admiring skinny jeans make them a proponent of child labor?

    • HH says:

      The thought of anyone (who claims to not be racist) attempting to romanticize or gets nostalgic about the Antebellum period of the South is simply perplexing…

      • Petunia says:

        Wow. That’s not what I’d call in open minded , non judge mental generality at all!! The very thing you chastise others for….

    • Sunny says:

      Absolutely. I cringed when I read that sentence. It was the title that got me though, so damn unaware.

    • Petunia says:

      Godwina, do you not see the single narrow minded assumption and judgement in your comment. Unfair- don’t discriminate!

  9. Cali says:

    I agree! The site is a mess. I just keep thinking maybe it’s too arty and snooty for me because I’m too stupid to even navigate the pages!

  10. Louise says:

    I think this is much a do about nothing.

    • Ang says:


    • Courtney says:

      Yup. She gives the impression of being a bit of an air-head, but a harmless one.

    • snowflake says:

      I agree. Liking clothing from a time period, doesn’t mean you support racism.

    • Yup, Me says:

      Would you say the same if her entire editorial was about the style and panache of the Nazi party?

      • Petunia says:

        She’s speaking of clothing and life in an era not a specific, “party”. Bad comparison. Keep reaching..,

      • doofus says:

        “She’s speaking of clothing and life in an era not a specific, “party”.”

        but she IS speaking of a specific “party”, that “party” being white women of the antebellum south who lived on plantations.

        she’s not talking about ALL clothing and ALL life in that era but specifically those of the “Southern Belle”.

    • TaterSkank says:

      It IS a big ado. We can no longer talk about a time in America’s past that said it was okay to abuse and own human beings with such indifference and casual mentions of “hummingbird relishing a pastoral bloom”.
      It’s the blatant cluelessness that is really ugly. I made light of it further up, but it’s not helping by perpetuating the idea that it’s ok to stick your head in the sand.
      Would it have been so hard for Blake and her editors to say “Hey, ya know what? This is offensive and might send the wrong message. Let’s do something else.” ? The fact that it didn’t occur to them is the issue I think.

    • Layday says:

      I think if you want to romanticize a time period that wasn’t so great for a lot of different people, including my ancestors who were slaves you should be prepared for the backlash (what is written goes beyond just just idealizing clothes but an an actual lifestyle). You think it’s much ado about nothing. Great. Awesome. I happen to think she is romanticizing a time period that never really existed except in nostalgic books from people like Margaret Mitchell. I think such romanticization does a disservice to people that were forced to bear the brutality of how things really were back then. I don’t think what she did is ok, whether out of ignorance or not. She should be called out on it. Maybe it will force her to wake up and actually examine the reality of the “antebellum” period. Or at the least force her to reevaluate her southern belle tropes. Who am I kidding, next week her site will probably have an editorial about the enduring mystique of “squaw” living.

      • Petunia says:

        So what is your answer? Should we completely dismiss a period of Tim because you ancestors suffered? Should everyone who simply complied with the ways of society back before we had angry people to call out fouls on a society be penalized and historically viewed as racists? I’m a white Christian female. Guess what?!? I can trace in history that my “ancestors” white Christians, at one time in history, were enslaved. It happened in Ancient Rome. Does Rome owe me something? Should I be pissed if someone appreciates ancient roman fashion? Should I pickett toga parties? Do you get it!?!!

      • starrywonder says:

        No you don’t get it at all even a little bit.

        The Antebellum South pre Civil War perpetuated that notion that times were much better for all concerned when the blacks were in the fields keeping their place and helping their masters about the place. The entire article is freaking tone deaf and plagiarized to boot. This woman is not smart as I said above. To her the south was Gone With the Wind and Rhett and Scarlett being passionate and in love and that pesky Civil War. She’s a moron and I am glad she’s being called out about it on Gawker and other news sites.

        Not too long ago in our history 1960s to be exact a huge portion of our population were treated separate and had to fight for the right to even sit up front on trains and buses. The fact that an actress in Hollywood is going around and saying that a time period when many people in this country would not be able to walk down the same street and look a white woman in the eye without being lynched is so picturesque is revolting. She got married at a plantation for crying out loud so she apparently has little knowledge herself about what that time period was really like for those who were not white.

      • Layday says:

        @ Petunia No I don’t get it . Your ignorant generalizations(equipped with exclamation points) won’t help me get it either. Got it? I made it quite clear that people are entitled to their opinions. Just as you are entitled to your opinion, so am I entitled to mine. You won’t change it sweetie. Reading is fundamental, read the second paragraph. It’s not just about antebellum clothing, but also romanticizing the lifestyle (as many posters have also tried to explain which you conveniently ignore). Also you have made one of the most illogical slippery slope arguments I’ve ever read. So because bad things happened in Rome, it excuses the subsequent bad things that follow. As we became more enlightened, we recognize that some things were just wrong. Period. Obviously the people doing those actions may not have thought so , but we as a more enlightened society do so. The ignorance as an excuse narrative has been used to justify some of the most horrendous things in history and we who study history must recognize this and call it out so that it doesn’t happen again.

        Where did I say don’t want to learn about a time period? Oh I’ve learned plenty about it, from narratives of slaves during that time period to books on Robert Lee. I never had the advantage to sit and only learn the Gone With the Wind narrative. So yes I want people to learn from it but I don’t want people to excuse it. There is a huge difference. Finally this sentence “Should everyone who simply complied with the ways of society back before we had angry people to call out fouls on a society be penalized and historically viewed as racists” is extremely problematic. You sound almost resentful that this is how society exists as you characterize it. While I am happy we live in a society that recognizes that not treating people with basic human rights is wrong, I would hardly relegate those people to simply being angry people calling out foul. it does these people demanding equality a disservice. Some of your statements are remarkably tone death so I will be a lot more polite than you were to me and ask that you dial it back in response. I don’t think anybody owes me anything but respect in how they respond to me. If you can’t do that then please don’t bother.

  11. Jaded says:

    Blake very likely poached a good deal of that article from another one from The Examiner in 2012 – read Lainey’s post on it:

    • qtpi says:

      Yep. Looks lifted from The Examiner to me! Good one Blake.

      So can The Examiner now send her a cease and desist?

    • Mia4S says:

      Whoa! So now the click bait web stories can be titled ” Blake Lively racist? (and a plagerist?)”. This is amateur hour defined! Better hope the kid is cute so she can pimp out the mommy-hood. Or god forbid she might go back to acting full time!

    • FingerBinger says:

      Looks like Blake pulled a Shia.

  12. magpie says:

    Welcome to the internet Blake. Probably thought it’d be so easy to be the “likeable” Goop.

    • lucy2 says:

      Probably never expected people to actually think about what she’s selling and have an opinion on it.

  13. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    Oh for … Is anybody really that naive?

    • FingerBinger says:

      Yes. There are people that romanticize that part of American history.

    • I Choose Me says:

      Sadly yup. I like Blake but she should be called out on her ignorance. The terrible plagiarized writing is another issue. I hope she gets a clue after this and educates herself.

  14. Ag says:

    the gawker piece was witty and spot-on. she should be contrite instead of trying to shut them down.

    and, seriously, i don’t expect an actress to be smart/well-read/educated/aware. BUT, she should have people around her to tell her that this $hit isn’t a good idea, and perhaps even explain to her why it isn’t.

    • Tig says:

      Who knows? Maybe her team did try to convince her of it’s tone-deafness and she ignored them.

      Re the GWTW reference above- it was on the other night- had to watch just to see Clark Gable and Vivian Leigh- two of the most charismatic screen performances ever. And so sad to watch Leslie Howard- he died early in WW II.

    • Brrrrr says:

      She did get married on a former slave plantation so its safe to say she has a fascination with that period. Anyway, what kind of person needs to be told that glamourising a lifestyle that was only possible thanks to the violence of slavery is a bad idea?

      I will not be surprised when as a gesture of “remorse” she does a piece on the fashion choices of the slave women. She’ll probably call it Pinafores on the Plantations because alliteration is just so hip. God I hate this bitch, bring back GOOP.

      • Ag says:

        either someone ignorant or stupid, or someone who doesn’t give a flying rat’s a$$? not sure which one is worse.

      • Sunny says:

        Hahahaha. Everything about your post is awesome. I don’t hate Blake but I do think she is vapid and try-hard(although nice) but I totally would love to see her come up with a stupid response post.

      • Tiffany :) says:

        “Pinafores on the Plantations ”

        I am dying ova here!

  15. Green Is Good says:

    Now Blake’s completely sheltered upbringing and ignorance are on display for the world to see.

  16. DenG says:

    Dang! Sweet teeeeaaaa, drawl and twang. Gather ’round chirruns, and smell the magnolias with your julep in hand. Watch them hoop skirts.

    • Mel M says:


    • Tiffany27 says:

      Lord, it took me forever to figure out what “chirrun” is. Lol.

    • Petunia says:

      This comment is just as narrow minded, ignorant and racist as your opinion of her romantisizing a time period. Is it fair to label and make fun of someone’s heritage? To imply they are ignorant based on their origin? All of you condescending commenters as much as you claim you get it and call me , “sweetie” ( passive aggression- sure you’re not southern?), my point is that all of the outrage and micromanaging of people’s opinions is creating more prejudice. The petty dissection of anyone who may have a somewhat controversial and incongruent opinion compared with your beliefs, is so hypocritical. At one point in history, several things were frowned upon. The upswing is that tolerance is a thing now. Crazily, all of you who get all crazy and up in arms should any implication of offense to your beliefs be made, are strong arming everyone to get on board with what you think or they are ignorant, uneducated,”sweetie”. There’s obviously wrong and right. You are generalizing a heritage based on your opinion. Relax. Just because you’re opinion is backed by pc popularity doesn’t make you right. Your blatant hyppocracy and know it all attitude is why there will always be an issue. Sweetie😍

  17. Delta Juliet says:

    So, do we think Blake actually wrote this? NOT THAT IT WOULD BE AN EXCUSE FOR IGNORANCE, but do we really believe Blake writes like this? Seems like someone else wrote it and she gave the OK.

    • Jayna says:

      Worse yet, I think she does write like that and thinks it’s beautiful prose. She’s such a bore and her site is a bore. It’s going to flop. I don’t think she meant harm, just clueless that all of her waxing and waning over that era of beauty, style, grace, blah, blah it still attaches itself to a time that isn’t pretty in many respects in the Deep South’s history. But she’s more referring to the elegance and manners and style of women, I guess. It’s hard to read her stuff. She spends so much time trying to impress with her artistic way of writing things. LOL

      Her site is just a flowery, pretentious mess, just like the way she wrote this piece, all poetic. I went on her site twice and couldn’t finish looking the second time. Gwyneth is a genius as far as her site, GOOP, compared to Preserve and the way Blake wants to present it. Trying to navigate that site leaves you disinterested and bored.

      • littlestar says:

        Her site is an Etsy knockoff. I think it will likely flop too, because why settle for mediocre when you can just go to the original AND much better site itself to shop for handmade goods?

    • starrywonder says:

      Either way she plagiarized it which makes it worse in my eyes. Her site and horrible purple prose sucks. Her romanticizing the time before the civil war where men were gentlemen and women were delicate flowers of the south makes me roll my eyes.

  18. yael says:

    saying naive shit in unnecessarily flowery language doesn’t make it any prettier.

    seriously. terrible writing.

  19. Marlene says:

    At first she just looked naive, but that stupid lawyer letter makes her look entitled. She made the story bigger.

    And let’s not forget that Ryan and her got married on a plantation.

  20. Nicole says:

    She has an old looking face. How is it possiple?

  21. BlueeJay says:

    Since this poor woman cannot act and has little left in her box of tricks (even less then Kim K) I say she should just take time off and stay out of the press for awhile. With so little in her head and no acting jobs her real self will show though and that will not be well received. She had the fact that she was with Ryan and the whole would ScarJo be jealous thing (that did not play out ScarJo could not have cared less). And she had Gossip Girls that is now done and she has no other acting jobs. Poor thing. How do you stay a celebrity – she is desperate to try.

    • magpie says:

      She has a baby on the way. That will sell some pics.

    • Jegede says:

      What has Scar Jo got to do with this?

      Why in every Blake post you have to reference like Ryan or Blake are obsessing on Scarlett?

      Scarlett is the one that has talked about her marriage and ex-husband in interview after interview Vogue. GQ, Esquire, Marie Claire year in year out more than Ryan ever has

      And lets not forget Scarlett has made some pretty stupid incidiary remarks herself this year

  22. emmie_a says:

    It’s sort of pathetic how much she’s trying to live in a fairy tale world. Nobody actually lives like that and just makes her look faker than she is.

  23. Jamie says:

    I just can’t with anything written on her new site. EVERYTHING is described with the most horrible writing I’ve ever seen. It’s like she’s trying to shove unnecessary adjectives and “tasteful” imagery everywhere. No one talks like that, and it makes her seem stupid rather than tasteful.

  24. Angie says:

    Blake and Ryan had their wedding on the Boone Hall Plantation, just saying….

    I wonder if she also visited the slave quarter on the Boone Plantation, and felt super inspired about writing about “the Allure of Antebellum”. Did she still felt like a “southern belle” at that moment? Or did she just preferred to ignore that part of the plantation and was just like “omg, it’s like in the notebook”. Which by the way, is written by rumored racist nicolas spark, who still think Boone Hall plantation is the ideal place for a romantic movie. So, she is just ignorant and/or dumb.

    But I thought she graduated high school earlier and had good grades. And her father is also a teacher so of course, she know about writing… If she is not that dumb and uneducated (as she claims), she must know at least a little about the pre-Civil War era in the South. And she still think it’s a good idea to romanticize that period?

    Her website is pretentious, she front like she can write (or her team) and all she wants is to learn about things. So, even if she didn’t know anything about that era, she could still research about it. Ignorance doesn’t make it ok.
    Or they just doesn’t care and prefer to ignore the ugly part of that period because after all, what only matters is the clothes and the beauty, grace and hospitality of the white and rich people…. who had slaves.
    And then they go, but it’s just a lifestyle blog, she is cute and blonde, and “harmless” and she bakes cupcakes, so it’s nothing….

    • Angie says:

      “Which by the way, is written by rumored racist nicholas spark, who still think Boone Hall plantation is the ideal place for a romantic movie. ”
      Hum, I re read and I made a mistake. I mean the production choose the house and they used the Boone Hall plantation in the movie. I don’t know if it’s in the book, since I didn’t read it, because I can”t stand him and his “love stories”, ugh.

    • snowflake says:

    • Petunia says:

      Seriously? So, in the south, an abundance of historical homes have been preserved and made into event sites. Oh, wait, pretty sure historical homes in the north are also marketed as event venues. Plantations, let’s be clear, regardless of their past, are often beautiful and absolutely appropriate as a wedding venue. I know, these homes were built in the backs of slaves. Yep, everyone of them cause that’s all us southerners have to offer this world😉

  25. Talie says:

    YES — UI & UX-wise, the site needs serious work.

  26. funcakes says:

    Never in a million years did Blake writer thiaarticle. I believe she has a ghost writer with dream of antebellum but not Blake .
    I think she is straight up trailer and want to come off as goop. She is not the smartest girl but wants to come off as high society.
    Fire that ghost writer and hire one s little more down to earth.

    • Sunny says:

      Although she probably didn’t write that article she probably had to approve it and it appears on her site so she bears some responsibility. The article is beyond tone deaf and stupid so at minimum she should apologize and start thinking more about her site’s content.

  27. snowflake says:

    i think everyone knows about the Civil War and slavery. She’s talking about clothes, ffs! Yes, it’s overblown and gushy, but good lord, she’s writing about fashion! Trying to give her website a southern flair. not a documentary on the civil war. If you’re trying to market something, you try to put a positive spin/slant on it. I live in a city with a mixture of urban professionals and southern rednecks. If I wrote an article about the city, would I talk about the fact that some people ride around with the Confederate flag in the bed of the truck and stare at mixed couples? no i would put a positive spin on the city and the positive aspects. that’s all she’s doing. just b/c she doesn’t mention slavery does not mean she’s not aware of it or in support of it. and yes, her stereotype of the southerners in that time period is inaccurate but that’s not racism.

    • FingerBinger says:

      No one is saying she’s a racist ,just tone deaf in the romanticizing of that era.

    • Stacey says:

      Thank you Snowflake! I was wondering when someone would comment that Blake was writing about fashion…not history in the way that everyone is making an uproar about. Had she wrote that piece and never used the term Antebellum and only talked about Southern Belles and their attire then not one person would be saying that she’s siding with folks who agreed with slavery. We’re talking about Blake Lively here, don’t put too much thought into the words she writes…she certainly doesn’t.

    • nk868 says:

      jesus, i know. quit trolling us. she was talking about the fashion of yesteryear and the current southern charm with a long history – sweet tea, southern hospitality. of course there are horrible things associated with the south but jesus christ you can say something good happened in an era or that you like the fashion of it without condoning slavery or hitler. ffs is right.

    • Geekychick says:

      Would you, huh? I wouldn’t, i’d be looking for another place to live and I’d feel very uncomfortable living there. I certainly wouldn’t whitewash the truth-you live in a pretty racist town it seems.

    • Catriona says:

      She wrote, “The Allure of Antebellum”. There is no denying that the title needs to be changed because it is highly ignorant and offensive. Why not just, “Antebellum Fashion”? Because, really? The “Allure”? Yikes.

  28. Tiffany :) says:

    There are clearly bigger issues at play here…but I have to say, A-line pleated miniskirts and “layering” do NOT evoke the style from the Antebellum south! There is just nothing remotely similar to the shape or textures from that time in her layout.

  29. Grant says:

    WHat also offends me is her apaprent inability to correctly utilize commas as well as her need to be as verbose as possible in these columns. Her phrasing is always so awkward and I’m not sure she really understand what the words that she uses mean.

    • JenniferJustice says:

      I don’t think she writes that stuff herself. She has writers. She gives them ideas/themes and they do the work. She paid somebody to do this, which is ironic and almost kind of funny.

  30. anna says:

    She’s from LA. Her husband is Canadian.
    Her obsession with the South is so weird.

    • Jegede says:

      She was born in LA. But her parents are from the South.

      In fact I think all her brothers and sisters were actually born/raised in the South.
      Blake is the only true LA child in her brood

    • Petunia says:

      So one must originate from an area to appreciate it? Weird…

      • Catriona says:

        She wasn’t saying that, don’t twist her words. She was just pointing out how odd it is of Blake to be so obsessed with the South CONSIDERING she didn’t grow up there and neither did her husband. And it’s a valid point. She didn’t say it was bad, she just said it was weird. RELAX.

  31. Ginger says:

    I just moved to a Mid West/Southern state from the Southwest (Las Vegas) and I’m still trying to get used to a different culture. Thanks for this post CB because I’m learning a lot today. I am confused by Blake’s use of Antebellum romanticism to try and sell clothing? I’m not even sure that’s what’s going on by looking at the Preserve post. Most definitely the narrative used with the pictorial is ridiculous and IMO ignorant. I think sending a lawyer to remove an Internet opinion piece is a rookie move. It’s only going to make things worse.

  32. captain hero says:

    What concerns me is that this wasn’t just some thoughtless tweet, lots of people spent time getting this together. And no one thought it might be inappropriate.
    And to all the people saying, “it’s just fashun, geez!” No, just no. This lifestyle that Preserve is romanticizing could not have existed without slavery. They cannot be separated.

    • Catriona says:

      Yeah, I didn’t know there were still people that are pro-slavery, sheesh. Their usernames should come with an “Ignorance” tag because some of their comments are just absurd and outright, blatantly, well, ignorant. I wish there were Like buttons on the comments section, I would Like it a gazillion times.

  33. Patty says:

    She needs to enroll in some writing classes.

  34. JenniferJustice says:

    While I don’t take offense to band names like the Dixie Chicks or Lady A, I do take offense to glorifying an entire era of women who were proud to prance around in fancy dresses while their servants fanned them, were beaten, sold, traded, killed, opressed, humiliated, medically neglected, and tortured. It was the culture of the times that allowed women to dress so exaggerated and impractical. If they hadn’t had slaves, they would have worn the same dresses worn in the northern states. The dresses, skirts, corsetts, shoes, hats, etc. signified status, ergo “I’m so rich and have slaves to do my work, I can dress like this because I don’t have to do anything but look pretty.”

    I know Blake didn’t mean it that way, but it was dumb. Before I even got to Kaiser’s reference to Gone With the Wind, it was the first thing I thought of. She’s watched that movie and believes that’s really how it was for slaves. And that, I’m sorry, is really dumb.

    The post likening this argument to praising Nazi wives should they have dressed ornately or were good hostesses, really hit the nail on the head. When something that horrible happened, to find anything beautiful or praise-worthy about it, is gross.

  35. Petunia says:

    RELAX!!!!! Are we now unable to appreciate specific traditions in a particular time and location because it’s synonymous with something ugly?!? Slavery doesn’t define the old south. It’s a tragic fact that coincides with that point in time. Saying you appreciate antebellum homes, big front porches and sweet tea by no means deserves the rabid racist police coming in to put her in her place. The south is a beautiful place, rich in lovely traditions that have zero to do with slavery.

    • db says:

      Sorry, but I have to disagree with you. Those traditions weren’t a coincidental with slavery, they existed *because* of slavery. Slavery *was* American capitalism in its infancy.

      that said, I can totally buy that Blake didn’t *mean* anything about slavery by it, just as I am sure the phrase “inherent social distinction” wasn’t meant support the class system…

      • nk868 says:

        so what are we supposed to do db? tear down the homes? pretend it never existed? sometimes the comments here get completely out of control inferring political incorrectness and analogizing it to supporting slavery or racism.

        she’s a silly girl with a silly blog who said she liked fashion, sweet tea, and porches.

        use celebitchy for escapism and celebrity gossip. let’s care this much and get this fired up about what our politicians and world leaders say, not what comes out of the mouth of an out of work actress with a store connected to a blog.

      • db says:

        @nk868 where did I say tear down homes, or pretend it never existed?

        I agree with you, Blake is a silly girl with a silly blog, but American slavery is our country’s original sin, its fatal flaw, and we still live with the after effects now, almost 150 years after the civil war. The day I finally grasped that slavery and the roots of American-style capitalism are the same was day I finally began to understand slavery beyond an historical artifact. That beginning greatly influenced how we conceptualize wages and work and class (‘inherent social distinction”) and … oh I could go on and on but I’ll spare you.

        Blake didn’t mean anything by what she wrote, or put her name to what someone else wrote on behalf. She’s talking about a certain romantic way of dressing, etc. That’s it. And getting “fired up” over her blissfully clueless blog is really just passing time in lively discussion 😉

      • Petunia says:

        Like it o not, what we know as our daily existence, exists because of slavery and every other historical event- good or bad. Because of slavery, we recognize humanity and celebrate human rights. Several races and religions were treated unspeakably and it all led to tolerance of today.
        Slavery was a form of commerce. It was unspeakable but it was part of what made things progress.

      • starrywonder says:

        @Petunia are you seriously saving that slavery was what made things progress in this country? Are you seriously trying to shine a positive light on slavery?

    • allheavens says:


      Slavery is forever and always synonymous with the Antebellum South and all its traditions because the economy of the South during that time was built on slave labor. You cannot divorce the two.

      Those Southern Belles, the galant southern gentlemen i.e., the landed gentry which Blake romanticized existed because they chose to build an economy and reap its benefits through the brutalization and immoral subjugation of a people.

      Four hundred years of slavery, afforded those Southern Belles the niceties of the plantation society, from the silk and cotton gowns with the hoop skirts; the sweet tea served on the verandas; to the hospitality shown to their guest; their leisure and money were afforded them by slaves.

      It’s easy to be gracious and genteel when you don’t have to actually do any of the manual labor required to have a successful plantation and wealth can be amassed rapidly when you don’t have to pay wages.

      So no, people cannot separate their traditions from how they are evolved nor should we be eager to celebrate those traditions when they are built on the bodies of slaves.

    • Falkor says:

      Spoken like a true Antebellum apologist, Petunia.

      • Petunia says:

        0kay, after this, I’m out…@ Layday, just reread your post to me. Baffled that you consider yourself kinder to me in your post than what you perceived as my message to you. I in no form, insulted you or your intelligence. I didn’t stoop to making jabs or present my self as an authority of ,”it”.😊 you know, the, “it” that you, in spite of your claims to be softer than I was to you, are apparently an expert. Without knowing anything about me, your direct and condescending putting me in my place was amazing. The fact that you thought that I singled you out specifically and made any assumption about you speaks volumes. I was making a point that can be defined as a generality. I appreciate your confidence and hope that with age, you realiE that your opinion isn’t nessecarily the right one.

      • Petunia says:

        @falkor. Can you define for me what, exactly an antebellum apologist is? If you’re on board with the antebellum hearts slaves train, which I think you may be…. If you’ve read my posts and that’s your contribution, I appalaud your ability to Access the Internet. Sorry, not sorry. Over defending myself against being called racist. Stop hypocritically categorizing people.

    • Catriona says:

      The title of that piece is wrong. Look up the word Antebellum and you’ll see why it is wrong. She could have just used, “Antebellum Fashions” or whatever, but to make an article titled, “The Allure of Antebellum”? Jesus Christ. That is horribly ignorant. Take note also that this is the same girl who had her wedding at a Southern Plantation known for its mistreatment of slaves, it just looks so bad to be putting out an article so ignorantly titled. And yes, she should definitely rename it.

  36. db says:

    Ugh. Aggressively ignorant.

  37. Petunia says:

    There are several disgustingly in humane blemishes in history. To actually get offended and decide that a historical fashion trend is thumbing up slavery is beyond hysterical. So some or most of those fancy southern belles had everything handed to them and lifted no fingers, it was a time in history. Most of the people we all celebrate and visit this site to read about are ungrateful aholes who don’t lift a finger for themselves and treat their employees and the fans that make them who they are like undesirable human beings.
    These women some not all were born into a life that although not right to us presently, was accepted then. Human rights continue to evolve. At the time, they were simply living within their societal mores.
    It’s part of history. It’s okay to appreciate certain things about an era without being on board with the bad things that took place.
    It’s gross this growing trend of more acceptance actually meaning less acceptance. Good bad and ugly, it’s what brought us here and has taught us tolerance. Only the loudest preaching tolerance really mean that unless you tolerate what they want tolerated, they have no tolerance for you.

    • Dolce crema says:

      That’s an interesting point. When we look at fancy traditional Chinese or Japanese clothing, the almost unpaid masses would not have worn those things while farming the food for the whole nations, but we don’t have to add that as a “however” when speaking of Asian grace,elegance , modesty or whatever words fashion mags may use in a spread with East Asian clothes.

      • Petunia says:

        With all respect, I’m do not see how your statement makes sense at all in reference to what I stated. So, you’re saying that the unpaid masses would not have worn the lovely history notable garments while farming?!? Did you proofread your comment?
        Regardless, I feel in whatever it was you were trying to convey, you missed my point. Pretty sure I never implied the slaves wore the fancy clothing that their labor produced for their masters. So not getting you at all. Again, my answer to the hysterics that think that anything produced in the antebellum era was on the backs of slaves, economics is an interesting study. For all of history humans have been the lowest denominator in the bigger picture that is commerce. Again, it’s deplorable but to act as though it started and ended with blacks, slavery and the south is ridiculous. Commerce trumps human rights to this day. Guess what northerners, slavery was legal up in your parts until it became a war strategy. We should all be disgusted with any form of abuse against another human being. The hysterical and ignorant singling out of the antebellum is simply ignorant.

      • Geekychick says:

        Petunia, where in the Western world was slavery still legal in 19th century? In Europe? No. In Canada? No. So where else in “western” world, besides South USA, was slavery legal that you can call it a thing of the times? Slavery was a thing of the times in antiquity, and even then it wasn’t based on race and you could have possesions, get married, and even earn money to buy yourself out of it. Think about that for a moment.
        And please, as numerous comments pointed out, Antebellum fashion and slavery were not separated, slavery made antebellum fashion possible.
        Oh, and your comment about fashion today and me potentially buying something made in sweatshopes: first, it’s not the same bc I don’t own the sweatshops and there is no profit for me in them. Secondly, I buy most of my clothes second hand because I don’t want to support sweatshops around the world-and When I have the money, I pay local seamstress to do my clothes.

  38. Luciana says:

    On a superficial note, what’s going on with her nose in the first picture?! The whole look (70s/60s vibe) doesn’t suit her at all. Pretty girl. Bad Styling.

    Anyway. I don’t want to infantilize her because she’s a grown ass woman but I think she’s in love with Gone with the wind “aura” (?): Beautiful women in beautiful dresses doing nothing but going to balls and gossiping. She missed the part where people were slaves. This whole mess has proven that she’s nothing but a pretty face. Next time she will think about the scope of “her” words.

  39. nicole says:

    I’m fascinated by Lainey’s comment about a 2012 article from the Examiner with very similar phrasing – e.g. Blake’s “hummingbird relishing a pastor bloom” vs. the 2012 article “hummingbird enjoying a rose bloom”. Historical ignorance and possible plagiarism….uh oh.

  40. Dolce crema says:

    Blake looks so good in that green dress. (I know pics are old)
    Wonder what’s next for preserve (next theme or editors note)
    Was this a master plan to get attention via controversy but controversy that doesn’t make her look like a TERRIBLE person or make her products look bad?

  41. Trashaddict says:

    Oh, Blakie, Blakie. You are not the next Goop, nor would you want to be. Enjoy your pregnancy and your upcoming family, find some QVC project and try to say as little as possible. Because when you offer your opinions it makes us all stabby. If you really want to have a lifestyle website, wait until a few divorces and single parenthood have matured you a little.

  42. KinChicago says:

    It’s hard fora bimbo in the blogosphere

  43. spice@dog says:

    Slavery was prevalent in the colonies and it was in the northern states. Many of our early leaders owned slaves. This is not a justification for slavery, just saying that slavery did not start in the south. The civil war was not only about slavery. I would never want to go back to the time of slavery. It is a horrible institution. I’m a genealogist. Some of my family were slave owners, some were abolitionists. Some set their slaves free. One of my aunts paid passage for her slaves to go to the newly formed Liberia. I am proud to descend from these ladies who worked for the end of slavery, even if it was just the end of slavery for their slaves, especially since women could be considered property, too. Guess what? We’re from Kentucky and Virginia! Please don’t put all of the blame for slavery on the south. But back to the article, Blake Lively did not say the things that Paula Deen said. Paula wants a party with African-Americans dressed in pre-civil war clothing and serving as such. Not to mention her language. Ugh. Read her deposition. Blake is just admiring the fashion and sweet tea (nectar of the gods).

  44. otaku fairy says:

    I don’t think she was promoting or trying to glamorize slavery (or even the gender inequality of that era), and I don’t think it automatically makes her a racist either, but it still was an idiotic thing to do. She’s probably used to the romanticization of the whole southern belle thing in our culture, so slavery and inequality probably didn’t even cross her mind. She should have just apologized and gotten rid of it.

  45. Pepsi Presents...Coke says:

    To paraphrase Selma Bouvier, ‘The older they get, the smarter they ain’t.’ I’m not going to infantilize this woman, she isn’t a baby even if she thinks like one and the ‘ Get out of Jail Free Because You’re Dumb’ card isn’t a dog that’ll hunt with me.

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  47. Petunia says:

    @layday- I couldn’t reply to your message directly. Although I was addressing you in my last post, I’m not quite done. I am highly educated. Is it your opinion that b-c someone’s opinion goes against yours that they are stupid? Your ugly and condescending digs, in my, according to you, entitled opinion, are a lowering of the bar way of discussing differences. I feel that if one is confident and well read( fundamental indeed), they can debate without resorting to emotional insults. I’m curious if you felt satisfied that calling me,”sweetie” helped open my mind and consider your point of view. Just curious…

  48. Petunia says:

    @geekychic….. Wasn’t based on race was one of my points. Good for you buying second hand😄

    • Petunia says:

      Hmmmm…. So guys, now what? I mean, we’ve established that most of you blame the south for slavery and refuse to recognize any cultural significance from the South because if that. Hatred for southern belles in hoop skirts and ice tea? Pretty sure someone tried to throw shade on big porches….( slave built). Least we have manners.