La Onda Chicana


By: Tlakatekatl

(Full disclosure; I have been a danzante[1] and immersed in Mexikayotl for almost fifteen years)

So, apparently there is a hullabaloo over a fitness group out in California, Ollin Ixtli, which is using “traditional” Aztec dance steps (Danza Azteca)[2] as a way to distinguish itself from all the other dance-your-way-to-fitness programs that have sprung up in recent years. The main criticism I gathered from reading the comments on the group’s YouTube videos is that the Danza is being misrepresented and abused for profit—the Danza’s sacredness is being defiled! My immediate reaction was, “So what else is new?”

Native culture has been continuously appropriated by the profit vultures since Europeans stumbled onto America. Why should Danza not suffer the same fate? But this controversy offers a great opportunity for me to bring up some points that I plan to elaborate further in future posts…

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About Kurly Tlapoyawa (1010 Articles)

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