The idea that we need to pay attention to where things come from is certainly true, but it’s a mantra that can take you only so far: If cultural forces like BA or Roman are necessary to popularize new-to-white-people ingredients, then only part of that dynamic changes. In the attention economy, those who garner attention will always have more sway, and even in 2020, the collective unconscious wants what it wants.
What is it that actually captures attention, then? At least one thing is the subconscious desire to emulate BA’s authority or Roman’s cool. In aspiration, desire matters. But that leaves me with another question, one that stalks my thoughts a lot of the time: What might nonwhite aspiration look like?