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Issues at SIs: Racism at SIs?


catherinewinnie

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catherinewinnie

Have you seen racism in your summer intensive? like racism to international students? like african, asians, etc?

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catherinewinnie, have you felt what you considered racism in your own experiences at summer intensives?

 

My copy of Random House Webster's Dictionary defines racism: noun 1.a belief that one's own race is superior. 2. a policy or practise based upon racism.

 

And if you have felt this can you expound upon what you mean? Or if you are just asking to feel the "pulse" across the spectrum of members here?

 

Do you mean your thread's questions more along the lines of - Has anyone perceived that the policies or practises at any summer intensives exemplified racsim as in that either the director, a teacher and/or fellow students showed prejudices against or for a particular student due to his or her race? It's important to remember that it can be a "for" or "against" kind of prejudice that some people might hold, too.

 

P.S. I have edited your thread's title because when you titled it "Racism to International Students" and then asked your questions in your post, I think - and please correct me if I misunderstood you - by using the term "international students" that it implies students who do not come from the country in which the SI is being held, as opposed to students who might be of different ethnic or racial backgrounds than the majority of students at the summer intensives, no matter where the SIs are being held.

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Momof3darlings

Catherinewinnie--you may actually have more parents post right now than students since most students are away at SI's and only posting sporadically.

 

As the mother of a minority dancer, I can say that she has not experienced any racism directly at any SI she has attended. (and she at her 7th SI). The only issues she has had were ones from people who had limited exposure to minorities before attending an SI and thus the faux pas that might occur when someone encounters their first AA classically trained dancer. I don't consider those small things racist, but rather lack of exposure in their home area.

vj

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catherinewinnie

I actually mean some distrimination to dancers of other race. Like playing tricks on them, not talking to them, bullying, etc. Sorry for the confusion.

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Momof3darlings

Catherinewinnie-sorry for the confusion. No, I have not seen any of the issues you speak about. I think the only problem I've heard of was dancers not knowing how to communicate with dancers from another country who spoke no English, yet wanting to include them in some things her group was doing.

 

I certainly hope you are not experiencing any of the things you speak of. But if you are, I hope you or the dancer in question will go to the chaperones or SI teachers for help.

 

vj

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Mel Johnson

My own definition of racism includes malice and the ability to wield power over those discriminated against. And discrimination takes two forms, fair and unfair. Fair discrimination takes the form of short dancers being down front in class and the taller ones in back. Unfair discrimination takes all sorts of odd forms, and is the product of plain old bigotry, which is contemptible. Fortunately, consciousness against bigotry is rising, and the practitioners thereof are subject to "social control" which is not a mere Political Correctness, but actual action by peers to correct the unacceptable behavior. I see this phenomenon growing, and most of the time, it's a good call by the peer group. I see this as a hopeful sign. :D

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There are a couple of girls from Japan at my DD's SI. Far from being discriminated against, it sounds as though the group is including them in everything -- even though they don't speak English. They are teaching the other girls Japanese (all the standards, like "Hello" and "Goodbye" and "belch" and "fart" :D ) and learning American customs.

 

catherinewinnie, are you concerned about something that is happening at your SI?

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catherinewinnie

no, I am not experiencing this, but I am quite concerned about this. Because my friend, is the only chinese in her intensive. So she is scared and worried or not having friends, etc, esp that she is a chinese, maybe the americans won't want to be with her, etc. So I am just asking whether you have seen these things happened. She will be going this Sat, s I wish her luck and have very good relationships with her mates.

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Victoria Leigh

I can only speak for our program, but we have a lot of students from other countries, including Japan, China, Italy, France, etc. I have found that our students are very friendly with them, and they try to learn a bit of their language as well as helping them learn English. I do hope that your friend speaks a little bit of the language that is used where she is going, since she is going alone. It can be a bit difficult at first if the student does not understand anything that is going on. But if she is outgoing and friendly, and tries to speak the language, I'm sure she will be fine. Like Treefrog said, the other students will welcome her and will want to learn about her country and her language. :D

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  • 2 weeks later...
balletrocs2

Catherinewinnie: Just to reassure you . . at my daughter's SI last week the most fun evening of all was one spent playing "Uno" (a card game) in the room of two Japanese dancers who speak very, very little English. My daughter says "they are VERY good Uno players!" So . . the dancers find ways to enjoy each other's company that don't require the same language. Also, my daughter is happy being partnered with an Italian boy who doesn't speak English. And she has enjoyed hearing the girls in the room next to hers singing in Italian some evenings. This diversity has been a wonderful thing for a girl from small town USA. I have heard nothing whatsoever about bullying or such . . quite the opposite, everyone seems to WANT to be with the international students and to learn from each other. :shrug:

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  • Momof3darlings changed the title to Issues at SIs: Racism at SIs?

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