Indian Dance Culture Essay

Topics: India, Tamil Nadu, South India Pages: 3 (797 words) Published: May 9, 2013
Erik WilsonIndian Culture Paper
Ms. Saliche

The Art of Indian Dance: Bharatanatyam

“Dance is the hidden language of the soul.” Dance is something way more than just fist-pumping at some party. Dance has deep meaning; it is an art form that can range from the simplest of steps to the most intricate set of moves. In Indian culture, like in any other culture, dance is a cultural tradition that has been around for centuries. In this paper, I will discuss the several ideas behind the Indian dance, Bharatanatyam, as well as its importance in Indian society.

The Indian culture has eight traditional dances that can all be traced back to different parts of the country. The eight traditional dances include Bharatanatyam, Kathak, Kathakali, Kuchipudi, Manipuri, Mohiniyattam, Odissi, and Satriya. Bharatanatyam is celebrated as the Indian National dance. “Well I love watching all types of Indian dance. Bharatanatyam is the classical dance that I do. It’s a really old dance style originating from South India in the state of Tamil Nadu.” Bharatanatyam, being as hard as it is to pronounce has a long meaning in the native language of South India, Tamil. The dance formed centuries ago in the state of Tamil Nadu but can date back to Hindu temple dances thousands of years ago. “Bha means expression, Ra means music, ta mean rhythm, and Natyam means dance.” If you put it all together, Bharatanatyam means the expression of music through music and dance. Today, Bharatanatyam has spread far beyond India but is still not well known to Americans.

No matter where you go in the world, you will always see dancing. Dancing has blended into societies and holds a spot in any culture. For example, in America, one traditional dance is the Waltz. Over time, dances change based on the changes in society. Bharatanatyam was very popular throughout India but slowly declined in North India after British rule. Bharatanatyam had negative connotation and “by the...

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