Talk:Belly dance

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The selection of photos on this page is not very good or representative, and most of the photos are of unknown dancers. The page would benefit from more pictures that actually illustrate the text by showing notable dancers of different styles and from different regions, and different costuming styles. Oddparticle (talk) 09:52, 1 March 2013 (UTC)

History and Origins section[edit]

I deleted this section and incorporated its last paragraph into the introduction. This section consisted of non-cited evidence and wild and erroneous speculation from the sections author. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:42, 3 March 2012 (UTC)

Costume section[edit]

add images of costumes BellyDances (talk) 11:10, 12 June 2011 (UTC)

Deleted submissions?[edit]

I recently added some relevant information on this articles health section but it's been removed twice now. The first time I understand why as I included links to the website and I can see how you might think it was spamming, so I removed the link and just left the RELEVANT information but again it's been deleted and I checked why to find this reason:

"Please stop adding inappropriate external links to Wikipedia. It is considered spamming and Wikipedia is not a vehicle for advertising or promotion. Because Wikipedia uses nofollow tags, additions of links to Wikipedia will not alter search engine rankings. If you continue spamming, you may be blocked from editing Wikipedia. OhNoitsJamie Talk 15:08, 20 June 2011 (UTC)"

Firstly, I'm not trying to spam the article or get extra hits to the website. The information I am adding is from a health and fitness professional who specialises in Belly Dance teaching. She has written a scientific paper on the health benefits of Belly dance in regards to motor skills in adults. This paper is in the process of being submitted to the appropriate organisations. Any information pointing back to the website is relevant as the belly dance instructor is the person involved. I do not understand why you keep removing it like it's some sort of disease or something, I thought the whole poit of Wikipedia is to inform people of the relevant information regarding articles and subjects, which is exactly why I added the information.

There are a lot of belly dancers out there teaching with no actual teacher training or health and fitness training and so this is why Lindsey Marie Silver chose to do the research, to inform and make it safe for anyone interested.

This is the text I included:

"Belly dancer, Lindsey Marie Silver, has looked to clarify some claims of the health given benefits of belly dance and published a scientific research paper titled, "Does Bellydance Improve Motor Skills In Adult Females"

I think it's important that this information is included to show that the research has been done instead of just empty claims all over the place that other dancers put on their websites, which as a result misinforms and could be dangerous. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:41, 21 June 2011 (UTC)


Hi everyone! I see my edits of the article's introduction have been reverted, but I find the current intro is not clear, and quite repetitious, considering raqs sharqi and raqs baladi are much better explained in the body of the article, and in their own respective articles, which are not even linked to in the current lead. The explanations are not well connected to the rest of the lead anyway, they just seem dropped at the end of the lead without any perspective.

Besides, the distinction with the tsiftetelli is not clear. The Arabic and Turkish dances are of very different origins. Tsiftetelli is not a mere translation of "raqs sharqi" or "raqs baladi", it's a different dance, even though it looks the same for people in the Western world. It's like saying that "Gheimeh" is another word for "Irish stew"; it doesn't make sense. Therefore I think the lead should start right away with the explanation that "belly dance" is a 19th century expression, because as you can see, "belly dance" means nothing close to "raqs sharqi", and the first lines are rather destabilising concerning that point. And also repetitive, considering the first line says it's a "Western-coined word", and the second paragraph repeats that idea.

Also, the wide array of nicknames such as "Middle Eastern dance" or "Arabic dance", besides being very unprecise, and even erroneous when stating later on that "tsiftetelli" is a mere synonym, are not even real and distinctive names of these dances (anyone can call a dance from the Middle East a "Middle Eastern dance", so there is no need to say it comes from the Middle East AND that it is sometimes called "Middle Eastern dance"), and therefore should not appear in the intro, in my opinion. The goal of this article should be to teach the reader that the word "belly dance" is just a Western substitute and not the real name of these dances. If we encourage them to say "Middle Eastern dance" or "Arabic dance", which are very approximate names, then they wouldn't have learned anything, and this article would be pointless, since each dance already has (or should have) its own article. These expressions should be a matter of redirects and should not besmirch the lead.

Honestly, I think the current intro is something of a cockblock lol at least that's the impression I had when I read it for the first time. I'd like to hear your opinions. Bye! Bryan P. C. C. (talk) 21:06, 14 October 2011 (UTC)

Under the Costumes heading, a word has been edited out. Perhaps it's the word Egypt? UserHoople365 03:37, 22 October 2011 (UTC)

Inconsistent Capitalisation[edit]

I've noticed throughout the article 'raqs sharqi' and 'Raqs Sharqi' are both used (two and three time respectively). Is there a proper form for this word? Yurell (talk) 00:16, 16 November 2011 (UTC)

No mention of India?[edit]

You know before islam, this was a land of ancient Hindus and Aryans. And there are many people who will tell you that belly dancing originated from a form of ancient India. And here, there is no mention at all! Not even as a possiblity! Wow. Another example of how wikipedia is so fair! (talk) 22:01, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

Find a reliable source for that and you can include it. OhNoitsJamie Talk 22:07, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

No belly dance did not originate from Ancient India. It's really a wonder how ever since belly dancing became more popular in the West, everyone wants to claim the origin. Before it became popular, we all knew it originated in the Arabic World. I suggest people stop trying to change history and diminish our culture. India has it's own dance just like every country, but the fact remains belly dancing was and always will be of Ancient Arabic origin. ProfessionalScholar (talk) 00:42, 31 July 2012 (UTC)

Tsifteteli is not a belly dance[edit]

I'm sorry, this article originally included Greek tsifteteli (τσιφτετέλι) as a "belly dance". Yeah, no it's not. Tsifteteli is just a dance that anyone can dance, to certain Middle East-influenced music. It's not a formal belly dance by a woman in costume, and you don't even move your hips much. Yes, it was obviously influenced a bit by Arab belly dancing (and the word was quite obviously borrowed from the Tukish Çiftetelli), but it's not a belly all. I'm removing the reference to Greece/Cyprus and tsifteteli. Skyduster (talk) 07:09, 17 March 2012 (UTC)

Exactly. They posted on here that belly dance originated in Greece. I removed it and someone just undid my edit, so I had to remove again. Why are people allowed to post false information on here? People are trying to diminish the Arabic culture but imposing Greek roots? Never was Greece a part of belly dancing, and certainly never had tombs with belly dance positions. The person linked a false source that did not even contain the information. Mesopotamia has always been known for the beginning of belly dancing, which IS of ARABIC origin. ProfessionalScholar (talk) 00:35, 31 July 2012 (UTC) ProfessionalScholar

History of UK Belly Dance[edit]

I added this section, which is more detailed because the previous post was a bit light on detail, inconsistent with facts and figures and ended with some form of publicity for a Belly Dance retail outlet in Leicester. I am a professional researcher in the field and my post represents snippets of some of my research, not the full body of my work. Reading through it, I might have to delete some of it because students regualarly source Wikipedia for essay and plagarism is very likely to occur.

I find it frustrating that you can add your research and thoughts on a subject here and not place yourself as a professional researcher in the resources for students to properly cite published and unpublished material. This is a weakness of the Wikipedia formula. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 10:27, 11 July 2012 (UTC)

I've added a few tags to guide where this part of the article could be made stronger. Could the author please expand on it? If you know of sources, please cite them. Maszanchi (talk) 14:40, 10 February 2013 (UTC)

I largely rewrote this section (with references where possible), as most of it had been removed. Oddparticle (talk) 10:28, 19 February 2013 (UTC)

Article needs a history section and more it's on current status in Middle East.[edit]

The article needs a history section on how belly dance came to be, if known. It also needs more info on the past and current status of belly dance in Islamic Middle Eastern countries outside of Egypt, Lebanon, and Turkey. Was it and is it still practiced anywhere else in the Middle East other then those countries? If so, I assume either there are either severe restrictions on how it's performed or it's done only in private in other more conservative Muslim countries, right? --Cab88 (talk) 11:16, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

Find a book that covers belly dance history, or several books. Keti Sharif's Bellydance: A Guide To Middle Eastern Dance, Its Music, Its Culture And Costume has a brief history section, going back to 5,000 years ago. Shawna Helland writes about belly dance history in a chapter called "The Belly Dance: Ancient Ritual to Cabaret Performance" in the larger book, Moving History/Dancing Cultures: A Dance History Reader. Binksternet (talk) 15:34, 9 November 2012 (UTC)

The article Raqs sharqi does talk about the dance's current status in the arabic world. Perhaps another argument for a merge? Maszanchi (talk) 23:30, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

I hve created a new top-level heading 'Belly dance in the Middle East' above the sections on Egypt and Turkey, and added a couple of new sections on the history and social context of bellydance in the Middle East to this. The history section is very brief at the moment. It's probably a bit Egypt-centric at the moment as that's what I know most about and what my sources mostly talk about (I don't have either of the books Binksternet mentioned, & am mostly referring to Karin van Nieuwkerk's 'A Trade Like Any Other', Morocco's book 'You Asked Aunt Rocky', Josephine Wise's 'JWAAD Book of Bellydance' and a couple of others). I also am not aware of bellydance as such being practised much in other regions of the Middle East outside of Egypt, the Levant and Turkey - other areas have their own distinct social dances which are probably outside the scope of this article, though could be referred to if pages exist for them. The book 'Grandmother's Secrets' does refer to belly dancing at women's social events in Baghdad, but Iraqi dance is usually quite different from bellydance so I'd rather leave it out for now Oddparticle (talk) 23:08, 3 March 2013 (UTC)

Merger proposal[edit]

I propose we merge this page with Raqs sharqi. Aren't the two things the same? Maszanchi (talk) 23:24, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

  • Merge. Same thing. Binksternet (talk) 19:57, 17 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Yes, different terms for the same thing. I believe that Oriental Dance should also redirect here. At present it redirects to the page on Middle Eastern dance, which doesn't currently contain very much information, but it's usually used as a synonym for Raqs Sharqi.Oddparticle (talk) 11:16, 18 February 2013 (UTC)

From discussions with the community there seems to be some disagreement on whether to merge or not. There are pages for American Tribal Style and Tsifteteli, so maybe there is a place for having Raqs sharqi too. There are pages distinguishing French from Russian Ballet, so there is precedent.Maszanchi (talk) 22:14, 4 March 2013 (UTC)

Published sources[edit]

Recently I heard a complaint that "belly dance is not a collegiate study." Actually, the topic has been the focus of both popular and scholarly study. The person who chooses to rework this article will want to find a balance which is supported by the books and articles which have been written about the subject, including telling the reader about any contradictions that are found. Below is a list of some of the published works that can be used. Obviously there are more. Binksternet (talk) 03:10, 17 November 2014 (UTC)