Munjulika Tarah’s article explores the connection between dance activities, morality, and social context in Bangladesh society. Bangladeshi women often must give up their dancing careers after marriage due to objections from in-law relatives. The objections are sourced in the profound context of historical events where women dancers were often associated with sexually available women with low social status. However, there are no records of Bangladeshi dancing techniques from the earlier period, meaning that the dance knowledge was distributed exclusively through training. Therefore, even though dancers earned the privilege of learning dance techniques, women dancers in Bangladesh nowadays face the problem of being accused of low moralities.
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Further findings suggest that due to the pressure of social context from the separation of Bangladesh from Pakistan, Bangladeshi dance training were limited to the middle-class public and required classical dance training. In my understanding, the article provides a good representation of dancing as a form of social phenomenon. Moreover, it illustrates how political context could influence the development of dance techniques, training availability and the overall public’s attitude towards dancers. On the other hand, the film about Malavika Sarukkai offered insight into the spiritual aspects of dancing. Sarukkai explains how dancing has a meditative character and allows her to feel the divine presence.
Dancing in Devadasis culture was purposed to celebrate gods and presented an act of service to people to gods. Therefore, besides its deep spiritual context, dancing for Sarukkai formed a physical form of connection with gods. It appears that while most of the viewers’ attention in this type of traditional dance focuses on the dancer’s hands, there also are many complicated elements of footwork techniques that can only be mastered through complete devotion on both physical and mental levels. In my understanding, the film represents how spiritual context and connection could become a foundation for mastering dance as a form of art used to deliver stories through different movements and techniques. Lastly, both materials described technique as movement principles achieved through training. However, the article perceived dancing as a professional career limited by the social climate and morality aspects. At the same time, the film suggested that dance is a form of art that could identify an individual as a person and provide a spiritual connection with God.