Raqs al Assaya: Egyptian Women´s Cane Dance

Raks al Assaya: Egyptian Women´s Cane Dance

To show the dancer´s dexterity, balance, charm & highlight her hipwork.

In Raqs al Assaya, although the woman dances with a masculine/macho symbol, in her hands it becomes transformed – feminine, flirtatious: “I can dance with your symbol.  You don’t have a monopoly on it.” By using a cane/ stick that men use as an weapon, she’s also saying: “I take your symbol of aggression, what is a dangerous weapon in your hands, and use it in a totally non-aggressive way, for fun and joy! I beat your sword into a plowshare.” It’s unseemly for a woman in that culture to do any sort of macho, aggressive, or combative moves in public, so she presents an acceptable, feminine alternative of using a “weapon” for fun.

While women’s Raqs al Assaya twits the men’s combatative Tahtiyb, it does not parody it. Parody is a deeper, maybe ruder response and no disrespect is intended.

Still me & yes, another Mme Abla thobe beledi.