‘Racist’ Chevy ad pulled for ‘Land of Fu Manchu’ jingle

Chevy ad: ‘racist’

An ad for the Chevrolet Trax has been pulled from every market where it is running after complaints that the ad was racist towards Chinese people and culture.

The jingle in the ad, which was made in Canada but has also appeared in European markets and online, refers to China as “the land of Fu Manchu” where people say “ching-ching chop suey”.

The ad has prompted debate about General Motors on Chinese social network Weibo.

Fu Manchu is a fictional criminal character created by a British author that is often regarded as discriminatory towards Chinese people.

The song in the ad is called Booty Swing by Austrian musician Parov Stelar, but is based on the 1930’s song Oriental Swing by Lil Armstrong – which also refers to Japanese geishas who want to “swing it like Amelicans”

The lyrics in the ad run as follows:

Now, in the land of Fu Manchu, the girls all now do the Suzie-Q,

Clap their hands in the centre of the floor, saying ‘ching-ching, chop suey, swing some more’

A spokeswoman General Motors, which sold 2.8m vehicles in China last year, told the South China Morning Post yesterday: “Once the issue was called to our attention, GM immediately removed the offensive content from the commercial.”

“As the goal of advertising is to engage an audience and draw their attention to a featured product and it is never our intention to offend the audience, we made a decision to edit the advertisement.”


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