Cultural appropriation is a sociological concept which views the adoption or use of elements of one culture by members of a different culture as a largely negative phenomenon. Generally, an assumption that the culture being borrowed from is also being oppressed by the culture doing the borrowing is prerequisite to the concept. This view of cultural borrowing is controversial, both in academic circles, and in general society. According to proponents of the concept of cultural appropriation, such cultural borrowings are problematic for a variety of reasons, ranging from group identity, and questions of cultural oppression, to claims of intellectual property rights.According to proponents of the theory, cultural appropriation differs from acculturation or assimilation in that the ""appropriation"" or ""misappropriation"" refers to the adoption of these cultural elements in a colonial manner: elements are copied from a minority culture by members of the dominant culture, and these elements are used outside of their original cultural context - sometimes even against the expressed, stated wishes of representatives of the originating culture. Often, in the process, the original meaning of these cultural elements is distorted; such uses can be viewed as disrespectful by members of the originating culture, or even as a form of desecration. Cultural elements, which may have deep meaning to the original culture, can be reduced to ""exotic"" fashion by those from the dominant culture. When this is done, the imitator, ""who does not experience that oppression is able to 'play,' temporarily, an 'exotic' other, without experiencing any of the daily discriminations faced by other cultures.""In North America, concepts of cultural appropriation are particularly prominent in Native American studies, and in studies of Black (American) culture. It is also current in certain circles of fashion criticism.