Racism in Dance Culture

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Racism as defined by Encyclopedia Britannica as “the ideology that humans are divided into separate entities called races and that some races are innately superior to others” is one of the world’s major issues and we cannot deny the fact that it still persists in the modern world. Many people are not aware of how much racism still exists in today’s society. Some people thinks of it is a way of life. Others think of it it as an offensive expression that shows closed-mindedness. Racism comes from different ethnicity, cultural morals, beliefs, and the physical appearances. Another issue that is related to racism are stereotypes involved in various racial slurs. Stereotypes are known as a generally held fixed concept or idea over a definite person, group, or thing. “A standardized mental picture that is held in common by members of a group and that represents an oversimplified opinion and prejudiced attitude.” Stereotyping puts people in a negative image, and then racism comes into play. It agitates the people affected by these generalized concepts. Racism is so ubiquitous that it has became part of today’s culture and became invisible yet many people experience it still. It is everywhere, it can be seen in the media and in one’s own community. Since the issue of racism has been going for centuries, various films were made to bring awareness to people. It is reflected in these films and other art forms as well especially in dance. Racial stereotypes were created for certain dance styles such as ballet is for white people and that hip-hop is for black people only. Using sources from dance studies and other scholarly articles, this essay will prove that racism is strongly presented and portrayed through both white protagonists in th...

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...someone suited for a certain dance styles such as ballet, cheerleading, and hip-hop. The difference between black and white causes issues over ideal dance styles thus, creating certain stereotypes. People make expectations on the dancing body based on the individual’s skin colour. This is clearly depicted through Sara and Britney’s character. When they moved in to a predominantly black neighbourhood, they were expected to dance certain styles of ballet and cheerleading. The racial casting and interracial partnerships have been extensive and ubiquitous for decades. Yet stereotyped and sometimes repulsive notion of race remain alive across the dance form. Instead of referring to performances as black or white, people should focus on the individual’s unique style and grace. People should think of dance technique as something separate from the dancers and their colour.
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