Chinese 'dama' dance to bad tune

Updated: 2014-04-30 07:33

(China Daily)

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A photograph showing a group of Chinese "dama" (literally, "big mamas") doing a square dance in front of the Louvre in Paris has sparked a heated online debate. Many netizens say the photograph has been doctored to show Chinese people in poor light, even though the person who posted it online swears that it is authentic, says an article in Beijing Morning Post. Excerpts:

The term "Chinese dama" was first used by The Wall Street Journal at the beginning of 2013 to describe middle-aged, middle-class Chinese women who, according to the paper, were a prime force influencing the global gold market. Now, Chinese dama have apparently become a group of ridicule by performing and trying to promote the neighborhood square dance on a bigger stage, or in other words, trying to spread a problem to other parts of the world.

Chinese dama's craze for the square dance can be attributed to their overall social environment and their experiences. Social transition sees the co-existence of all kinds of mentalities. Therefore, one should not be surprised to see the prevalence of fickle and aggressive behaviors in society today.

Although it is not easy to either beautify or tarnish the image of a certain group. But if it is true that some middle-aged, middle-class Chinese women performed the square dance in front of the Louvre, then they have indeed given the group dance form with Chinese characteristics a bad name.

Square dancing could have become an example of the collective aspect of Chinese culture, but now it seems that the over-enthusiasm of a group of Chinese dama has dealt it a fatal blow, at least on the international stage. Perhaps overenthusiastic square dancers should take a step back on their own, instead of waiting for government regulation telling them to do so, and allow the dance form to become popular overseas in the normal way.

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(China Daily 04/30/2014 page9)