UCSD The Cultural Power of Food and Dance Discussion

  • For our video discussion this week, I want us to watch two videos centered on two of what I believe are the biggest parts of someone’s culture: food and dance. The first video is a short film (PBS Short Film Festival) called “Sweetheart Dancers” focusing on “Sean and Adrian, a Two-Spirit couple determined to rewrite the rules of Native American culture through their participation in the “Sweetheart Dance.” This celebratory contest is held at powwows across the country primarily for men and women couples, until now” (PBS). The second video for this discussion this week is from PBS as well, this time a part of the Say It Loud series. This video focuses on Soul Food: “As our culture evolves so does our food. What was once eaten out of necessity has become celebratory, all the while being the topic of constant debate. Evelyn & Hallease explore the new and inventive ways our generation is honoring and preserving our culinary past while staying conscious of our dietary future” (PBS). After watching the following the two videos, please answer the following questions:
    1. Think about your own cultural touchstones. What sort of dance or food traditions do you participate in as part of your culture? (You can focus on the culture of just your family unit/what your family does or more as culture as part of a larger group.)
    2. What is your favorite part of your culture for you? (This can be about food, dance, language, holidays, clothing, hairstyles, etc.)
    3. What was your biggest takeaway or AHA moment from “Sweetheart Dancers”?
    4. What was your biggest takeaway or AHA moment from “Should We Keep Eating Soul Food?”
    5. How has watching these two videos changed your views or ideas about culture and cultural borders? Do you now think differently about how food and dance impacts someone’s culture?

    “Sweetheart Dancers”

  • “Should We Keep Eating Soul Food?”

  • Requirements:
    • Your initial response should be 150-300 words per question.

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