All discussions of tarot on this blog are specifically anti-supremacist. As a person of European descent, I reject the narrative that tarot is a purely European phenomenon or that it should be used only by “white” people. I understand that some of my ancestors, specifically those from places like Alsace and the Rhenish Palatinate, may have used these decks for game play and I am interested in what the imagery of those decks has to say about the world in which my ancestors lived. But I reject any claim that tarot is only authentic to those descended from Europeans, or that tarot decks need to feature Europeans to be legitimate.
The four-suited card deck was not invented by Europeans. It was co-created over several centuries by people across East and Central Asia, the Middle East, and northern Africa before arriving in Europe in the 1300s. The specific contribution of Europeans is the 22-card trionfi, or trumps, now often known as the Major Arcana. In discussions of historical and present-day tarots, there is no room for Euro-centric purism. As a card game and as a tool of divination, tarot is by the people and of the people; it continues to change and be enriched as it encounters new cultures. And that is as it should be.
Those of us who are of European descent have to be vigilant to make sure that our culture is not mis-appropriated by those who would distort our history and our sacred tools in order to build white supremacist and white nationalist narratives. That is why from March 2021 going forward, discussions of historical tarot decks, like Tarot de Marseille and the Visconti-Sforza deck, will link to this statement.