Feminism, Pop-Culture | Posted by Saskia G on 07/21/2015

What Misty Copeland’s Success Reveals About Race In The Arts

Misty Copeland in an Under Armour commercial

Misty Copeland in an Under Armour commercial

Misty Copeland made history on June 30th when she was promoted within the  American Ballet Theatre, becoming the first African American ballerina to reach the rank of Principal Dancer after being the second-ever black soloist in the traditionally white ballet company. Considering that almost all principal ballerinas around the world have historically been white, Copeland’s promotion is an immense achievement in an artistic tradition that still largely favors pale skin and extremely thin bodies.

Copeland rose to fame amid circumstances that, for elite ballet, seem at odds with her success. She took her first ballet class at her local Boys & Girls Club at 13-years-old — a relatively late start — and lived with her single mother and siblings in relative poverty …

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Feminism | Posted by Julia B on 04/14/2014

Not “Crazy,” Just Dedicated

When girls are young, Cinderella tells them “dreams really do come true.” As we get older, that philosophy changes and we learn that life isn’t actually a fairytale. You have to work hard in order to achieve something great, and even then it doesn’t always happen.  For me, ballet started as a fairytale and transformed into a whole lot of hard work. And I love it.

Like any professional-in-training, I spend about 20 hours per week training for what I dream of doing: becoming a professional ballet dancer. I don’t know if I’ll succeed (because the ballet world is extremely, extremely competitive), but either way I want to be able to say that I worked as hard as I possibly could.

People have said that I “have no life” outside …

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Feminism | Posted by Nellie B on 08/10/2009

A Feminist Goes to the Ballet


Ballet: The Epitome of feminine Grace?

Ballet: The Epitome of "feminine" Grace?

Ballet, as fine arts and sources of entertainment go, is not exactly what one might call a feminist pastime.  Though it is ridiculous trying to mandate whether something is “feminist” or not, ballet definitely deserves to be critiqued through a feminist lens. 

Don’t get me wrong– I love ballet.  I’ve been watching performances for years. I danced starting at age four, until I quit when I decided that I didn’t want to seriously jeopardize my feet by going en pointe during my teens.  So, a recent performance of several short dances by a local theatre troupe reminded me of the complexities of ballet.

The pros: while ballet is often ridiculed for being girly, feminine or, of course, “sissy,” the strength and discipline involved in …

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