White people can’t … dance?

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  • #3667

    Kenneth26453
    Participant

    Why is it that such a seemingly large percentage of black people can dance very well?
    Original Code R627. Click here to see responses from the original archives. Click “to respond” below to reply.

    User Detail :  

    Name : Kenneth26453, Gender : M, City : San Diego, State : CA Country : United States, 
    #29800

    Stacey27922
    Participant

    As a teacher, I have been asked this question by many brave (white) children. My thought is that music and dancing are an important part of black (as well as Latino) culture.

    Often, when a child is old enough to stand up, parents will take them by the hands and bounce them up and down to the music – “dancing” with them. When I was a young girl, many girls spent countless hours creating slap-pap rhymes, jump-rope rhythms and original dances in groups. It is accepted and encouraged in black society. Growing up, we all watched and danced along with Soul Train, cranked up the music while washing the car and even danced with the hose. Boys are encouraged to dance with girls from a young age as well. There isn’t the stigma of “growing up too fast” when dancing in public, and some dances between boys and girls ages 10-13 can be downright “grown up.” I have not seen the emphasis on music and dancing in white society. There seem to be more cultural inhibitions related to dancing. Thus, kids in white families typically get less practice. Since practice is what makes perfect, it only makes sense that the kids who practice the most and in the most varied of settings would end up looking like the best dancers. I always recommend that, to improve dancing, kids go into their rooms alone with a radio, and dance with themselves in the mirror. Keep what looks cool, ditch the odd-looking moves. And watch Soul Train!

    User Detail :  

    Name : Stacey27922, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : Black/African American, Religion : Christian, Age : 32, City : NY, State : NY Country : United States, Occupation : Publishing, Education level : 4 Years of College, Social class : Upper middle class, 
    #42715

    Nelson A.
    Participant

    Wanna see white people who really ‘got the moves’ dancing like crazy? Then come to Venezuela or other Latin American countries. No matter what skin color (white, brown or black), Hispanics see dancing all around us since we are born. So good dancing definetely has to do with your upbringing, not your skin. This proves that style and grace are unique to no race.

    User Detail :  

    Name : Nelson A., Gender : M, Race : White/Caucasian, Religion : Catholic, Age : 30, City : Caracas, State : NA Country : Venezuela, Occupation : Lawyer/Business, Education level : Over 4 Years of College, Social class : Middle class, 
    #43964

    John-B
    Participant

    Stacey pretty much covered it, but another way to ask the question is, why do middle class white guys dance so badly, so often? And the answer to that is, in part, that white guys are often raised with the expectation that they won’t be ‘girly’, and being ‘girly’ includes moving your hips plus just about any movement that isn’t hard and linear. Since dancing is athletic, and practically any athletic activity demands moving your center, if you can’t move your hips — and if you’re conditioned to make most of your movements as straight jabs out from the body — you’re always off balance, your feet don’t pick up when they need to, and your arms fly around, or in shor t you dance like a goon. I was lucky enough to have my mother force me into ballroom dance classes when I was about 13; after most classes my thighs and butt would ache because those muscles werent’ used to moving. But it actually drastically improved me in all my sports (tennis and wrestling, mostly), and it was nice to be able to ask a girl ‘Do you want to dance?’ without thinking to myself ‘…. while I jerk around like a spaz in front of you!’

    User Detail :  

    Name : John-B, Gender : M, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : White/Caucasian, Religion : Atheist, Age : 42, City : rural, State : CO Country : United States, Occupation : professor, Education level : Over 4 Years of College, Social class : Upper middle class, 
    #38967

    K-W26906
    Participant

    Short and sweet. Rhythm is large part of African-American culture. Rhythm is essential to dance. AFrican-Americans, in general, are good and comfortable with dancing. I win no prizes, but I can waltz, foxtrot, jerk, virginia reel, hustle, minuet, square dance, jitterbug and what ever else you show me. Once you get comfortable with your body, get flexible, get INTERNAL rhtythm… ya’ got it made! GO FOR IT!

    User Detail :  

    Name : K-W26906, Gender : M, Race : Black/African American, Religion : Christian, Age : 31, City : Indy, State : IN Country : United States, Education level : 4 Years of College, 
    #30388

    Sherman
    Member

    To the person who supposedly quoted fred astaire as saying that black people are actually terrible Dancers, He should remember that Fred Astaire got most of his moves from a black man. Mister BO Jangles was responisble most of the moves that Fred Astaire and many others like him used. other dance forms like the Tango were developed at a time when blacks weren’t allowed into the dance studios to learn them. Now im not saying that blacks are superior but dancing and singing and making jokes have always been the way for blacks to cope with the harsh realities of life it was a coping mechanism that allowed us to deal with slavery and racism. the harder life got, the more blacks used dance and music and comedy to deal with life and we still use these gifts today.

    User Detail :  

    Name : Sherman, Gender : M, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : Black/African American, Religion : Christian, Age : 34, City : Richmond, State : CA Country : United States, Occupation : Contractor, Education level : Technical School, Social class : Middle class, 
    #15603

    Chaka
    Participant

    Generally speaking Black people have more rythym and ‘soul’ than whites. I dont see why anyone would be bewildered or offended by this generalization. Its just a cultural difference. No one will argue that more asians are skilled in karate than others. WHY, because its apart of their culture. Now I will admit, with the popularity of Black Music(and culture) taking over the US (and the world for that matter) there are a few more white people who can ‘get down’ than there used to be. But its usually a direct influence of Black music and people. Why do you think the most popular musical icons are BLACK or Black byproducts (i.e. Elvis). It doesnt mean anything spectacular but its just the way it is. If you still doubt it conduct this experiment: Rent a huge ballroom. Gather whites (from different areas and ages) put them on one side, gather Blacks (from different areas and ages)put them on another, and pump up the music(something with a steady beat), and see for yourself. Which side will me dancing rythymically to the beat and which side will look like they are having a seizure.

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    Name : Chaka, City : detroit, State : MI Country : United States, 
    #16199

    Christina32069
    Participant

    If you consider dry-humping to be dancing…

    User Detail :  

    Name : Christina32069, Gender : F, Sexual Orientation : Straight, Race : White/Caucasian, Religion : Christian, Age : 22, City : Long Beach, State : CA Country : United States, Education level : 2 Years of College, Social class : Middle class, 
    #32384

    pauldavies
    Member

    To tell the truth, young black males seem to stand on the walls in clubs talking with their boys and watching the females dance. Then there are the black males who have a drive for theater and excel at dancing. Some blacks can dance, others can’t and refuse to. It could be out of fear of embarassment or whatever, but all blacks aren’t the same. Maybe the majority that you see in a particular media will project a stereotype about all black people. Sometimes you hear black people (and I’m one of them) bragging about what they are good at, ie. “Of course I know how to cook. I’m black, ain’t I?”, or “All black girls can braid hair” or “All my people know how to play basketball.” It stems from us trying to gain recognition for the things we do well trying to advance the African-American race. Many people think all Caucasians are happy or that all Asians are dynamite with math. But I’m black, and I’ve never been able to dance.

    User Detail :  

    Name : pauldavies, Gender : M, Race : Black/African American, Religion : Baptist, Age : 25, City : Asbury Park, State : NJ Country : United States, Social class : Lower class, 
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