Dancing is forbidden, heathen, barbaric.

Through the years, various people have banned dancing, or at least advocated doing so. Here are a few examples.

> Fad dances banned at Brigham Young U (1966)

> Twisting banned in Bufffalo (1962)

v Adventist students sanctioned for attending dance (2001)

(This is a fair use excerpt of an AP news wire.)

COLLEGE PLACE, Wash. (AP) -- A Seventh-day Adventist school's discipline of nearly 50 students who attended an off-campus party that included dancing has touched off a dispute between students and administrators.

Members of the Walla Walla College student senate have proposed revising the student handbook to strike the word "dances" from a list of "places of entertainment" to avoid.

School administrators say dancing is on a list of "unacceptable behaviors" the church wants its students to avoid and that sanctions will stand for students who attended the party in December.

They were among about 250 students who attended a Dec. 9 gathering at a private home in College Place. There, they socialized, sipped soft drinks and listened to music. Some danced.

Students Shauna Turner and Vanessa Zunke were among those who attended the party, where the hosts screened the music in advance for overt sexual or profane content.

Turner, Zunke and others disagreed with the school's claim that the dancing and music were inappropriate.

"We're Adventists," Zunke said with a laugh. "None of us can dance."

Word of the punishments spread across campus, touching off protests over alleged contradictions in the college's actions. Editorials, letters and stories filled the Jan. 11 issue of The Collegian, WWC's newspaper.

Jen Ellis, a Collegian editor who attended the party but wasn't disciplined, wrote: "God gave us the abilities to feel, to move and to be moved. Who are we to make still the rhythm inherently within us? ... Who are we to say which movements are OK and which are not?"

Several students wanted to know how the party differed from the annual barn dance the college hosts each fall. That event features contra dancing, similar in style to square dancing.

"To me, there's a big difference," president Thomas said. The barn dance is "a school-approved activity. We know the kind of music that's going to be played there ... we know the environment."

"The students' opinion is, `They're not going to stop us, so they might as well take it out of the handbook,"' Associated Students President Peter Smith said. "The faculty's opinion is, `It's in the handbook, and it's not going to change."'


This file is part of the FAQ list for the newsgroup rec.arts.dance. The FAQ list is being maintained by Victor Eijkhout (victor at eijkhout dot net, talk about vanity), who appreciates being sent additions or corrections on the material in this collection. Copyright 1994-2001 lies with the maintainer and the contributors of various parts.

Listen up: Victor did not write most of this stuff; he just collected it. So don't send him any dance questions.

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Last modified on: 2001, Tuesday February 6.