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  • for southern cloth dancers

    One question for you southern cloth ladies: when doing a round dance do you still bow during the honor beats? And why? And what about during straight intertribal songs or during grand entry?

  • #2
    when i was a young girl, you always saw the southern women during a round dance bow their heads on honor beats, it is not something I see in our area very much now. I have taught my daughter to do this because it was the way i was taught.. people have even asked why we do this before. I have also noticed that very few women turn towards the drum for honor beats during intertribal but always during exhibition or contest, i dont know why this has stopped in our area but it is a commen thing. hope this was helpful:)
    "finding your best friend in life and love is glorious"


    • #3
      Thanks NDNKidz, that's what I have noticed as well. We don't see too many southern cloth dancers up here in the Pacific Northwest, and I have also seen that very few of them "bow" when dancing straight intertribals or grand entry.

      Anyone else?


      • #4
        For the past few years, i have not seen anyone bow for grand entry, or on round dance
        Well will wonders never cease.....


        • #5
          tsk tsk tsk ...I have seen dancers bowing during the honor beats, but I notice more women raise their fans.
          Instead of telling God how big your storm is, tell your storm how big your God is!


          • #6

            Those would be northern style cloth dancers. Southern cloth don't raise their fans, they bow.


            • #7
              interesting. I'm going Kiowa, but I'm in Georgia....that's what I've seen here.

              Good to know.
              Instead of telling God how big your storm is, tell your storm how big your God is!


              • #8
                Those would be northern style cloth dancers. Southern cloth don't raise their fans, they bow.

                In Oklahoma - some Southern Cloth dancers do in fact raise their fans. I have a niece that does this when in buckskin or cloth. This was something that her grandmother did and has been passed to her. My daughter was also told to do this, but does not.

                My late father-in-law told me that this was taken as a blessing, to be done in each of the four directions. My daughter does not raise her fan as she doesn't feel that she is of an age to do so.
                There are several dancers, both cloth and buckskin, young and old, in Oklahoma that do this.

                Just thought I would relay this info.......


                • #9
                  I've not seen many women bowing during round dancing. I was also taught no bowing during grand entry and specials. I have also noticed more and more that women arnt bowing during the intertribals either, I guess its a case of go with the flow. I was also taught to bow during trot songs, anyone else taught that way?


                  • #10
                    Mom does still bow and turn to the drum as well as my wife and our daughters. I too have noticed that many of the women are no longer doing this honoring the song and drum. My wife and I have discussed this with some of our elder family and friends. They,the elders, have often said this is laziness or just lack of caring, or simply not being taught. I for one appreciate seeing this move. I also have seen these same women raise their fans parallel to the ground in a waving motion. I have only seen this in OK or by OKies.

                    Maybe this can be revived along with some other ways that seem to be dying away with each generation.


                    • #11
                      Thanks everyone for the great comments! Very interesting!

                      Luvstraightdancers - I haven't ever seen a southern cloth dancer raise their fan. Is this a specific tribe's tradition? Do they not bow at all, or do they raise their fan while bowing? Thanks for the info!

                      Cherosage - Thanks for your comments as well. Do you know the reason for raising the fan?


                      • #12
                        Let me try to word this delicately.
                        While slightly raising the fan in a respectful and graceful manner, is northern in tradition, please do not become confused with some of the fan waving you see now. Some women have taken to holding the fan straight up over the head flailing their arms about as if they are swatting giant prehistoric flies. This is not the "northern way". It is usually done by women in various groups and organizations as you can usually tell their affliation as to what group, by all of them making the same gestures and movements. They are usually the ones that do the 49 step during rounddances and the Billy Jack salute (with or without a fan) at various and spontaneous honorings. ;) :p
                        "We see it as a desecration not only of a mountain but of our way of life. This is a genocidal issue to us. If they kill this mountain, they kill our way of life." ~Debra White Plume


                        • #13
                          raising fan

                          When I danced Kiowa for awhile. they taught to raise the fan but not over your head. Plus the 49 step as 'the real round dance step' and the which arm for the shawl, etc. from a women that was Souix, CHerokee, Creek, Seminole, etc. Now that she has been down here you cannot correct them because a "real" elder taught them this.


                          • #14
                            Just driving by again.

                            I believe this is an honor to the song by a bow and a slight raising of the fan. These women that do this are not flailling their arms nor their fan. The fan is almost horizontal to the ground with a slight waving motion, almost that of a water wave motion. Their steps and bodie movements are graceful and smooth. You can see Kiowas, Osages, Comanches, Quapaws, Shawnees, Cherokees, Choctaws,etc... making this move. I'm not sure where this style came from but I know it is old. This style had almost passed away but has made a slight comeback to our area.

                            I have probably muddied the waters again. However here it is.


                            • #15
                              Hey Beth

                              I understand about the "elder" telling everyone the "correct" way to do things. I think we ran into her before she was from so many tribes and we told our kids not to listen to her because she was just making up stuff from what she had seen. Sort of like watching a movie without the sound and making up a story to go along.
                              In fact, there were so many Indian experts practicing their arts out that way we had to move back home to Oklahoma. We have many friends from that way who we asked why they didn't do things the proper way and they were told that they couldn't do this and couldn't do that because they weren't given permission. We asked who's permission they needed?
                              I understand following one's tribal ways or clan ways, but just dressing a certain way because you're not allowed to dress like "real" indians really turned us off powwows out in Florida. That and all the "Indian" experts. One woman once claimed that she knew more about Indians than Indians themselves. Too bad she didn't know what it was like to be one. She was one who told various people how they could dress and how they couldn't.
                              I'll be quiet now, I guess my issues with the Florida powwow circus are really showing up.


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