Debates Forum

Debates Forum

  1. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 19:21
    Stephanie Kurlow, an Australian girl (age 14), has received a scholarship
    to help her realize her dream of becoming a professional ballerina.
    In 2010 her parents (Australian father, Russian mother) converted to Islam
    and their children followed suit. That's when Stephanie stopped dancing.
    But she eventually found a way to make her love of dancing compatible
    with her religious faith. She will dance, but only if she's allowed to wear hijab.

    Stephanie Kurlow faces prejudice on more than one front.
    On one hand, some conservative Muslims have denounced her for wishing
    to dance (accompanied by secular music) in public (before men).
    On the other hand, some ballet 'purists' have objected to her wishing
    to dance while not wearing what other ballerinas would wear and some
    Islamophobes apparently oppose a pious Muslim being ballerina at all.

    Stephanie Kurlow knows there never has been a ballerina in hijab before.
    She has said (BBC interview) that her mother has encouraged not to
    believe that something must be impossible because it's never been done.
    With the support of her family and many friends, Stephanie Kurlow hopes to be a
    pioneer and inspire other Muslim young women to break free of traditional stereotypes.

    So how appropriate would it be for a Muslim ballerina to perform in hijab?
    Should Stephanie Kurlow be encouraged or discouraged from pursuing her dream?
  2. Germany
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    30 Mar '16 21:07
    Dancing - serious business.
  3. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 21:162 edits
    Originally posted by KazetNagorra
    Dancing - serious business.
    'Serious business' indeed. Ballet stars are perceived as heroes in some cultures (e.g. Russian).
    Becoming a professional ballet dancer requires a high level of dedication and early intensive training.
    Even if you don't appreciate the art form, you should attempt to respect the efforts of its performers.
    But KazetNagorra presumably finds it more easy and relaxing to sneer.
  4. Subscribersonhouse
    Fast and Curious
    slatington, pa, usa
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    30 Mar '16 21:50
    Originally posted by Duchess64
    'Serious business' indeed. Ballet stars are perceived as heroes in some cultures (e.g. Russian).
    Becoming a professional ballet dancer requires a high level of dedication and early intensive training.
    Even if you don't appreciate the art form, you should attempt to respect the efforts of its performers.
    But KazetNagorra presumably finds it more easy and relaxing to sneer.
    Do you always find negatives in what people say? Of course dancing is a serious business, especially for the performers and we love to see those dancers, 3 of our granddaughters are taking dance, we will see how far they progress.
  5. Cape Town
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    30 Mar '16 21:54
    Originally posted by Duchess64
    So how appropriate would it be for a Muslim ballerina to perform in hijab?
    Should Stephanie Kurlow be encouraged or discouraged from pursuing her dream?
    I have no objections to her dancing in a hijab. I wonder if the rest of her attire must also be less revealing. Again, I have no objections.
    Whether she should be encouraged or discouraged however depends on her situation. She is more than likely to face strong opposition and may struggle to make a living out of it. If she is rich enough not to need to make a living out of it then she should pursue it as long as she enjoys it.
    This is not much different from the struggles that black or 'ugly' girls face in the same industry. If anything I think she has more chance of succeeding as a ballerina than an overweight girl would.

    There are black ballerinas that have broken the stereotype, and even a ballerina who dances with a prosthetic leg (but probably not as a career).
  6. Joined
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    30 Mar '16 21:59
    Why would you wear a hijab ?
    What would you think if a western ballerina wore a ski mask ?
  7. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 22:051 edit
    Originally posted by sonhouse
    Do you always find negatives in what people say? Of course dancing is a serious
    business, especially for the performers and we love to see those dancers, 3 of our
    granddaughters are taking dance, we will see how far they progress.
    If I recall correctly, KazetNagorra has severely put down some cultural artifacts
    (e.g. the film 'The Sound of Music' ) that he does not appreciate. So I interpreted his
    post as sarcastic, regarding dancing as a frivolous hobby rather than 'serious business'.
  8. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 22:153 edits
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    I have no objections to her dancing in a hijab. I wonder if the rest of her attire must also be less revealing. Again, I have no objections.
    Whether she should be encouraged or discouraged however depends on her situation. She is more than likely to face strong opposition and may struggle to make a living out of it. If she is rich enough not to need to m ...[text shortened]... tereotype, and even a ballerina who dances with a prosthetic leg (but probably not as a career).
    "I wonder if the rest of her attire must be less revealing."
    --Twhitehead

    Yes. In a BBC interview, Stephanie Kurlow claimed that Western ballerinas wore much
    less revealing attire a few centuries ago, and that's what she prefers to wear today.
    It's easy to find internet photos of Stephanie Kurlow dancing or posing in her preferred attire.

    My reservation about this is that if she's *uniquely attired* while dancing in a corps de ballet,
    the audience's eyes are going to be drawn more toward her (in contrast with the other normally
    attired ballerinas) more on account of what she's wearing rather than how she's dancing.
    It's a distraction (though perhaps tolerable) to have one ballerina singled out for her
    appearance than for her exceptional performance or talent.

    One of my implied points is that many Westerners like to criticize Muslims for not giving
    enough freedom and opportunities for women. Now here's a Muslim young woman who
    hopes to break away from a stereotype and inspire other Muslim young women to do the same.
    She's already facing opposition from conservative Muslims. And she's already facing
    prejudice from some Westerners who don't understand her struggle to reconcile her
    love of dance with her religious faith.
  9. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 22:384 edits
    Originally posted by phil3000
    Why would you wear a hijab ?
    What would you think if a western ballerina wore a ski mask ?
    To the extent that Australia is a Western society, Stephanie Kurlow is an aspiring Western ballerina.
    She was born in and has grown up in a Western society. She will be trained in a Western society.
    She hopes to perform (mostly) in Western societies. To my ear, in a BBC interview, she
    sounded like an Australian teenage girl, through she's probably more single-minded than most.

    So why does the Islamophobic Phil3000 apparently regard Stephanie Kurlow as a non-Westerner?
    Several years ago, she converted to Islam. Phil3000 apparently regards being a Muslim
    and being a Westerner as contradictory.
  10. Joined
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    30 Mar '16 22:41
    It sounds like a person who has been indoctrinated into the libtard self righteous pity.

    When you perform you wear the costume that you are told to wear.

    If she runs into a person who allows her to wear what she wants to wear, then great. People can choose to pay money to see her dance or not. If she does not, then her only moral recourse is to put on her own performance.
  11. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 22:571 edit
    Originally posted by Eladar
    It sounds like a person who has been indoctrinated into the libtard self righteous pity.
    When you perform you wear the costume that you are told to wear.

    If she runs into a person who allows her to wear what she wants to wear, then great. People can choose to pay money to see her dance or not. If she does not, then her only moral recourse is to put on her own performance.
    I believe that an issue is whether wearing hijab is a 'reasonable accomodation' in the workplace
    of a religious difference. (Under US law, employers are required to offer 'reasonable
    accomodations' to qualified employees with disabilities unless doing so would pose
    an undue hardship.) If hijab would prevent her from executing a key move that other ballerinas
    were expected to do, then her employer would seem to have the right to ask her to remove it
    if she still expected to be treated like the other employees. But if she could complete
    a full performance satisfactorily in hijab, then the issue becomes an aesthetic one.
  12. Joined
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    30 Mar '16 23:03
    Originally posted by Duchess64
    I believe that an issue is whether wearing hijab is a 'reasonable accomodation' in the workplace
    of a religious difference. (Under US law, employers are required to offer 'reasonable
    accomodations' to qualified employees with disabilities unless doing so would pose
    an undue hardship.) If hijab would prevent her from executing a key move that other ba ...[text shortened]... complete
    a full performance satisfactorily in hijab, then the issue becomes an aesthetic one.
    Yeah well you can believe what you want.

    I wonder if you ever questioned Orthodox Jews should be able to dance in their garb? How about Amish?

    There are plenty of people who wear stuff for religious reasons, but for some reason on Muslims are given a second thought.
  13. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 23:281 edit
    Originally posted by Eladar
    Yeah well you can believe what you want.
    I wonder if you ever questioned Orthodox Jews should be able to dance in their garb? How about Amish?
    There are plenty of people who wear stuff for religious reasons, but for some reason on Muslims are given a second thought.
    Eladar keeps showing his lack of comprehension of what I write and the issues involved.

    First of all, I have *not unconditionally* supported Stephanie Kurlow's 'right' to perform as
    a professional ballerina in hijab. Indeed, I have brought up the issue of having one ballerina
    singled out for her attire rather than for performance. The issue, it seems to me, is whether
    attire (including hijab) should be considered *incidental or aesthetically essential* to ballet.
    And I suspect that there would be a range of well-considered views on that issue.

    If Stephanie Kurlow aspired to become a fashion model and she refused to wear some
    revealing attire because it conflicted with her religious faith, then that obviously would
    be considered essential, not merely incidental, to her job performance, disqualifying her.
    But do people attend the ballet for the dancing or just to watch ballerinas in revealing attire?

    Let's suppose that an employer banned one's employees (who must work in public) from
    wearing headgear. An Orthodox Jewish employee objected on the grounds that his
    wearing a kippah was only incidental, but not essential, to the performance of his work.
    Some people may dislike watching him working while wearing a kippah, but if his job
    performance was otherwise satisfactory, then he should be allowed to keep wearing it.
  14. Joined
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    30 Mar '16 23:30
    Originally posted by Duchess64
    Eladar keeps showing his lack of comprehension of what I write and the issues involved.

    First of all, I have *not unconditionally* supported Stephanie Kurlow's 'right' to perform as
    a professional ballerina in hijab. Indeed, I have brought up the issue of having one ballerina
    singled out for her attire rather than for performance. The issue, it seem ...[text shortened]... f his job
    performance was otherwise satisfactory, then he should be allowed to keep wearing it.
    Reading comprehension? In never said you did, I just pointed out how you don't care about the others.
  15. Zugzwang
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    30 Mar '16 23:423 edits
    Originally posted by Eladar
    Reading comprehension? In never said you did, I just pointed out how you don't care about the others.
    I see no reason to comment upon another false, or at least unfounded, claim by Eladar.
    Can Eladar cite any evidence to support his cocksure claim (or implication) that Muslims are granted special
    privileged treatment for their religious beliefs that have *not* been granted to members of other religions?

    In a prison, if Muslims are allowed to have a diet that excludes pork, would Eladar claim
    that Jews are denied to have a diet that excludes pork? I suspect that Eladar would rail
    against giving 'special treatment' to Muslims while ignoring that it's also given to Jews.

    '
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