Pole Dancing Becoming Popular Workout Among Chinese Women

August 7, 2008

The article, printed on July 25, reported about a rising health trend in Beijing - pole dancing. The person who started the craze is Luo Lan, a Yichun native who first saw pole dancing when vacationing in Paris. Lan learned that pole dancing has been a popular way for women in America to burn calories. So she opened the Lolan Pole Dancing School, which offers women a watered down version of a traditionally sexually charged act. Although the sex aspect of pole dancing isn't accentuated at her school, Lan said that women who attend class still gain a sense of self-confidence and are able to express one's sexuality, both benefits can be difficult to achieve as a woman in China. The article ended with a quote from Jiang Li, a 23-year-old student and pole dancing enthusiast.

"A lot of people expect Chinese women to be subdued and faithful, that
we should marry and take care of kids at an early age," she said. "But
I don't think that way — I want to be independent. I've been studying
traditional Chinese dance for many years, but this is totally
different. I feel in control when I do this. If I learn this well, I
feel I can be a superstar. I want to be a superstar."




The NY Times even had a video version of the story. I mean, that's what I heard. Ahem...http://video.on.nytimes.com/?fr_story=2dfdb6a4d2601b7d345aba1304bb43f09b78f299
Not sure what this has to do with Asian Americans...
Well, I thought the article touched upon some misconceptions of the Asian female- that they are demure and conservative. I also thinks its relevant in the sense that an American trend is transferring to another society such as China. I apologize for it not provoking any sense of thought or curiosity on your behalf. People can be offended or put off or take this story as a joke but those exact reactions also raise interesting ideas regarding sexuality as it relates to gender, race and even age. Wow, the more I get into the layers of this article the more I can pick it a part with various view points. Plus, I really don't see how reading something having to do with any country in Asia doesn't peak some interest to Asian Americans, but again maybe that's just my opinion.
Certainly there are layers, as you are able to bring them up in your comments, but as it stands, your original post basically says "I read this article in another publication. It was about pole dancing in China" with little of your own commentary. Reporting someone else's news is not that interesting.
Lala, I never thought that this particular post would prompt me to share my thoughts regarding the validity of not only my post but blogs and blogging in general, so I'm actually pleasantly surprised. First of all, the reason I didn't editorialize this post was because it isn't meant to be an op-ed piece on this news story. I also felt the article itself is news worthy because of the mere fact that it shows a trend that is going against the norms of the Asian woman stereotype. I believe the writer framed the story with that angle as well so there was no need for me to reiterate that point.Further more, I normally don't inject my posts with opinion initially (unless that's the particular purpose of that entry) because I feel it could ostracize readers and even discourage them from participate in the commenting. And that's no fun.I also didn't "report" a story that has already been written because it's obvious that I credited the publication (in fact I linked it), summarized the story (not plagiarized) and added quotes (with attributions). What I did do is share this particular news story to a new audience. And I believe that single action is the basis of blogs and blogging. As a an avid blog reader, I feel the purpose of blogs is that it is a marketplace of ideas, innovations, and cultural happenings in the global society that is the Internet. When something is blogged about, it brings that idea to the forefront and it sparks an exchange among readers. This being said, the fact that we are having a discourse over this blog entry satisfies the purpose of blogging- making this post effective.Finally, I believe that the idea of sharing "someone else's news" is a what makes blogging a force to be reckon with. Traditional media is floundering in a constant evolution of online news gathering. Sharing anything that originated with "someone else" is not only interesting it's the point. So that being said, let's agree to disagree.
i think pole dancing is also a huge thing here in the u.s. amongst asian/asian american women, right? actually, pretty much with the general female population, i feel like pole dancing has become a popular and fun work out. i know that there are gyms and studios out there that solely focuses on that. even though people have reported back saying that their muscles felt stronger, and more tone, i don't think i'd try it. falling on my face in front of a class doesn't seem that appealing to me haha.
Asiana, Yes, I can see you credited the publication and linked to it. I'm not using the word "report" to mean that you went out and gathered the news, but to mean that you brought attention to another publication's story.I guess we do disagree quite a bit. As an avid blog reader, I don't find it all that interesting when a blogger simply shares someone else's news. Sure, often blogs will have a whole list of links to other blogs and media, like "hey, look at all this interesting stuff, check it out." And that's fine. But when you devote one blog entry to one article, without editorial, I'm sorry, but it's boring. I read Hyphen because I want to see smart commentary, not links. I'd really like to support you guys, especially with you being all community-driven and such, but I think I'll go read racialicious instead.
Lala, I'm sorry for not fulfilling your specific need as an avid blogger but thank you for lending me your eyes and time that it took read my post and comments there after. Also, it seems that you were unhappy in the past with other posts on the blog (Asian Americans Not Always Top Achievers) but you tend to return and give us a read through. So I'm guessing I will capture your clicks in the future, I mean you have to see if my posts get any "smarter" then make it apparent if remain below par. Right?
I check in every once in a while (depending on how much time I have to procrastinate at work) but the quality of posts are inconsistent. I will admit to being like an Asian parent in that I will criticize more than praise, but that's only because, like an asian parent, I'd like to see success. Hyphen has so much potential, but isn't there yet.
I totally get what you're saying, Lala. And like an Asian child, I may seem rebellious and sassy but deep down I want to make my parent proud. Your criticism and our exchange was enlightening and as a writer I honestly take criticism to heart. In the future, I will definitely remember your suggestions on improving my posts. Mahalo!
Asiana and Lala, I stopped in to read about the article in the NY Times about pole dancing, but I found your exchange to be very entertaining as well! With that said, I thought I'd share an article with you both that I read earlier today...it's about how pole dancing is being considered for the Olympics. Check it out!http://www.petermanseye.com/interesting-times/sports/338-poles-apartCheers!