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n South African Journal of Cultural History - Entering the ballroom : a history of ballroom dancing in South Africa to the mid twentieth century

Volume 21, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1018-0745
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Abstract


Baldanse is 'n gewilde tydverdryf in die een-en-twintigste eeu. Hoewel baldanse na die veertiende eeu terugdateer, is die huidige baldanstegniek eers kort voor die Tweede Wêreldoorlog (1939-1945) gestandaardiseer. Baldanse het in die vroeë twintigste eeu 'n bloeitydperk beleef toe meer mense as ooit tevore dit beoefen het. Ook in Suid-Afrika het dié "ingevoerde danse" 'n populêre tydverdryf geword. Hierdie artikel gee 'n kort oorsig oor die vroeë geskiedenis van baldanse in Suid-Afrika van die konloniale tydperk tot en met die eerste helfte van die twintigste eeu. Inleidend word kortliks gekyk na die beperkte aandag wat baldanse in Suid-Afrikaanse literatuur geniet. Die artikel fokus op diegene wat by baldanse in Suid-Afrika betrokke was en die redes waarom hulle so graag wou dans; asook die oorsake wat uitheemse baldanse so 'n gewilde plaaslike aktiwiteit gemaak het. Aandag word ook gegee aan daardie mense wat - as gevolg van klas, danstegniek of die wet - nie toegang tot die formele dansvloer gehad het nie. Die artikel poog om bewys te lewer dat die belangrikheid van baldanse en die gewildheid daarvan rasse- en kulturele skeidings in Suid-Afrika kon oorbrug, in so 'n mate dat dit 'n integrale tydverdryf vir party klasse van verskeie groepe kon word.

Ballroom dancing remains a popular cultural pastime in the twenty first century. Although it originated way back in fourteenth century Europe, the current techniques were standardized only shortly before the Second World War (1939-1945). The early twentieth century became thus the heyday of ballroom with more people participating than ever before. This was also the case in South Africa where these imported dances became a very popular pastime. This article will present an overview of the early history of ballroom in South Africa from the colonial period to the mid twentieth century. By way of introduction it will consider the limited attention given to ballroom dancing in South African literature. It will focus on who was involved in ballroom, why they wanted to dance and what were the various factors that made these foreign dances such a popular local activity. Attention will also be given to those people that did ballroom dancing even though they did not have access to the formal dance floor for reasons related to the law, class or technique. It will show how the social importance and appeal of ballroom dancing transcended the cultural and racial divides in South African society becoming integral to certain classes in various groups.

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/content/culture/21/1/EJC30684
2007-06-01
2016-12-10

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