DA:NCE Newsletter – September 2021
CESE Summit: Healthy or Harmful: National Experts Talk About Children’s Dance
by Mary BawdenThe NCOSE (National Center on Sexual Exploitation) CESE (Coalition to End Sexual Exploitation) Conference gives sight to the public health issue of pornography. Cultural blindness shifts as you hear, see, and understand experts from many academic fields articulate destructive outcomes affecting a pornified culture.
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Guest Blogger:
Lina Nealon

A Pedophile’s Dream: Exactly a year ago, well into a pandemic that unleashed a spike in child sex abuse, Netflix released the film Cuties. The storyline centered on an 11-year-old Senegalese girl living in France who, like all preteens, struggles in defining her own identity while desperately seeking acceptance from her peers; in this case, a group of rebellious girls aspiring to win a dance competition.

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It’s Time to Volunteer for DA:NCE

The calls and emails have been consistent. And repeated. We’ve been getting more and more volunteer interest from YOU so we decided to get organized and get ready.  We’ve worked diligently with expert Mikhaela Gray-Beerman to create a volunteer website with a personalized approach. Before I mention any more details, let me remind you about the seasoned reasons that affect the internal call to volunteer.

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Volunteer with DA:NCE
Healthy Dance Studio

One of the goals of the DA:NCE is to highlight organizations we feel embody healthy dance. We are pleased to present: In HIS Steps, located in Pensacola, FL.

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Guest Blogger:
Keenan Kangas

Navigating Hyper-sexualization and Abuse Through the Male Gaze: There are very few experiences in this life that stimulate the mind, body, and soul in the way that dancing does. Dance has the unique ability to speak in a way that words cannot, and impact us on a deeper emotional and spiritual level. Anyone who has ever felt the unparalleled, visceral feeling of completely losing themselves in the movement, knows firsthand just how freeing the art can be.

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DA:NCE Happenings…
Here’s a list of a few of the things we’ve got going on:

Our Share Your DA:NCE Story campaign continues, and we’d love to include your voice! If you took dance lessons as a child and had a negative experience, we need to hear from you. Your first-hand account allows us to expose the damaging effects of childhood hypersexualized dance and open the eyes of parents, dance teachers, and studio owners through education and awareness.

To participate, visit danceawareness.com/shareyourdancestory. You are welcome to share your name or remain anonymous. Share your story and help us project children in dance!

Forums and Conferences:

  • VAT Forum(Voices Against Trafficking): Sep 29
  • IADMS (International Association for Dance and Medical Science) Conference  at Denver, CO Oct 20-24
  • Internet Sense First: 3rd International Summit: Nov 12-15 

~ Mary

Click the button below to Donate to Dance Awareness: No Child Exploited to help end child exploitation through dance. DA:NCE is a program of Soul to Sole Choreography, a Section 501(c)(3) organization, EIN 20-0370145. Contributions are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.
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Start a Local Petition

Educate and inform your local dance studio to stop adult, sexual choreography, lyrics and costumes for children under 12.

At an early age, young children are often being taught how to approach relationships and how to approach intimacy in the wrong way. The art of dance should not be used to divert young girls from healthy sexual development. We need to carefully evaluate the cultural choices that entice young children to be viewed as adults. We need to produce healthy boundaries in dance so little girls are protected relationally. Then, when they experience the beauty of dance, they can move as young children, not as adults.

You can make a difference by starting a petition in your own community. Your signature, and those of other concerned adults, can raise awareness and give a voice to end the sexualization of young girls through choreography and costumes in your own community!

Our Step by Step Guide to Educate Dance Studios provides helpful tips you can use when collecting signatures and also outlines best practices for presenting the signatures collected to your local dance studio owner or teacher. And if you are ready to dive right in, download the local dance petition signature collection sheets and start collecting signatures. Your efforts will no doubt make a big difference in protecting young dancers in your community!

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