Event Title

The Promotion of Body Positivity in Ballet

Location

CSU 201

Start Date

11-4-2017 10:00 AM

End Date

11-4-2017 11:00 AM

Student's Major

Theatre and Dance

Student's College

Arts and Humanities

Mentor's Name

Julie Kerr-Berry

Mentor's Department

Theatre and Dance

Mentor's College

Arts and Humanities

Description

The ideal female Western ballet body is an image that persists as the norm of what a ballerina should look like. This ideal includes a slender woman with long legs and arms, a small head, little to no bust line, and a short torso. It is an image that continues to be synonymous with success and beauty as a ballet dancer. Social and historical research indicated that this long held belief and damaging ideal pervades the way past, and present ballet dancers view themselves, their bodies, as well as their performance in other dance forms such as modern and jazz dance. This paper will focus on Western ballet relative to the impact the ideal ballet body has on its participants and on dance in general. This ideal is still very much a part of today's ballet and concert dance culture in the west. In addition, this paper will also offer that positive influences do exist that challenge the persistent falsities spread by this ideal and argue that more education needs to be presented to teachers and students alike to stop the dangerous implications of this ideal. As a result, such education could support much needed body positivity in the realm of ballet and in the overall Western concert dance world.

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Apr 11th, 10:00 AM Apr 11th, 11:00 AM

The Promotion of Body Positivity in Ballet

CSU 201

The ideal female Western ballet body is an image that persists as the norm of what a ballerina should look like. This ideal includes a slender woman with long legs and arms, a small head, little to no bust line, and a short torso. It is an image that continues to be synonymous with success and beauty as a ballet dancer. Social and historical research indicated that this long held belief and damaging ideal pervades the way past, and present ballet dancers view themselves, their bodies, as well as their performance in other dance forms such as modern and jazz dance. This paper will focus on Western ballet relative to the impact the ideal ballet body has on its participants and on dance in general. This ideal is still very much a part of today's ballet and concert dance culture in the west. In addition, this paper will also offer that positive influences do exist that challenge the persistent falsities spread by this ideal and argue that more education needs to be presented to teachers and students alike to stop the dangerous implications of this ideal. As a result, such education could support much needed body positivity in the realm of ballet and in the overall Western concert dance world.

Recommended Citation

Achen, Claire. "The Promotion of Body Positivity in Ballet." Undergraduate Research Symposium, Mankato, MN, April 11, 2017.
http://cornerstone.lib.mnsu.edu/urs/2017/oral-session-01/1