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dancing and ways of the powwow

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  • dancing and ways of the powwow

    I feel a great cultural event is the pow wow. The word pow wow was first an

    Algonquin word. It was first pronounced Pau-wau in Algonquin lanuage. Pau-Wau first

    meant a gathering of spiritual leaders. I was told that the Europeans misunderstood the

    word and went around calling all the gatherings of the Native American Indian people

    and their ceremonies Pow Wows. Today a Pow Wow is a cultural event, which is held in

    many different places. The two biggest places they are held are at Universities and at fair


    A pow wow today is where many people gather together. The Native American

    Indians may dance, sing, drum, sell or maybe just come to enjoy the event. A pow wow

    is suppose to be a fun and enjoyable event for anyone to go to. During an intertribal song

    anyone can dance even if someone is not Native American Indian or in regalia. Someone

    should never call what a Native American Indian wears a costume. The reason I say that

    is because many days and even years went into making their regalia. On an estimate I

    would say that when someone is done making their regalia it is worth around 500 through

    1,000 dallars. This is why someone should not call regalia a costume. Someone in the

    public should also not try to touch someone’s regalia without asking the person before

    hand. If someone wants wanted to take a picture they should always remember to ask

    before the picture is taken. In my hunka family they believe when someone takes their

    picture they are also taking part of their spirit away. A hunka family is an adopted


    The drum is the heart of the Pow Wow. Without the drum there would be no Pow

    Wow. Usually there is many drums at a pow wow about 4 or more. There has to be four

    men that sit on each drum, so each direction is covered. The four directions are West,

    East, South and North. Every drum usually takes turns playing. I have been to a couple

    of Pow Wows where all the drums actually played together, but usually the public will

    see them play all separate. Men are suppose to be the only drummers, because when the

    drum is being played it is honoring the woman. However, some woman are going against

    this custume and playing the drum anyways. Women usually sing behind their husband,

    brother or maybe even some other relative. In the old days woman were suppose to stand

    behind the men and be a look out for anything that might come up behind them that

    might harm any of them. Most woman are suppose to wear a shawl around their

    shoulders when they sing. A shawl is about 6 yards of material and has fringes at the

    ends. The fringes are put on by hand; this usually takes about two days non-stop to

    finish. The men dress in whatever they feel comfortable in. When some one is around

    the drum they should not curse. They should also be clean of alcohol and drugs. The

    drum as soon as it is made has a spirit in the heart of it. We call this spirit the grandfather


    At pow wows some people dance to celebrate thanks to the Creator. Another

    reason some people dance is to honor those that have fought for are freedom in the

    United States of America. The overall reason is for fun or at a competition pow wow for

    money to see who is the best at a certain dance. There are three basic dances that men
    usually dance. The first dance is called men’s traditional dance. This is the oldest type

    of dance for men. Their regalia are usually made of cotton cloth or hide. The traditional

    men usually wear a roach and also a bustle. The rest of the regalia are usually unique to

    the person. The second type of dance is the grass dance. These dancers use to be the first

    dancers at pow wows to dance to stomp on the grass to make the grass flat for the rest of

    the dancers. Their regalia’s are usually very colorful and bright, which is made up of alot

    of fringe. The third type of dance is the men’s fancy dance. This is the newest type of

    dance that the men have done. Their regalia is usually made of bright colors and two

    bustles. One of these bustles is worn around the neck and the other is worn in the back.

    There are also three different types of dances for the woman. The first is woman’s

    traditional dance. Their regalia are made either of cotton cloth or hide. When these

    woman dance their feet never leave the ground completely, which shows their closeness

    to mother earth. The second type of dancing is the Woman’s Jingle Dress. An Ojibwa

    woman had a dream many years ago to make the dress to help heal people. The dress is

    made of cloth and 365 cones. A woman must have a dance and go through a ceremony to

    wear this dress. Each day a cone is put on the dress and a prayer was said with each cone

    that is on the dress. When a jingle dress dancer dances it is said that the prayers are

    released and sent to the Great Spirit to be heard. The third type of dancing for woman is

    the Woman’s Fancy Shawl. These women usually wear a shawl, high cut moccasins, and

    a bright colored rosette on their back. I was told that these woman and their shawls

    represent the transition from a cocoon to a butterfly.

  • #2
    I don't know where you got your info but some of that is crap.


    • #3
      Originally posted by kat hater
      I don't know where you got your info but some of that is crap.

      Alright hater give an example of info that is crap


      • #4
        Originally posted by straightdancerinaz
        Here's some for ya....

        " A shawl is about 6 yards of material and has fringes at the ends. The fringes are put on by hand; this usually takes about two days non-stop to finish."

        I dunno about you but, I think 6 yards of material for a shawl is a bit much. Heck....that thing would go clean around EVERY lady at the drum, and I figure it might take about two day of non-stop tying to fringe that sucker!!!

        I didn't even read that! Holeh! she must be a BIG woman!


        • #5
          What the heck??????

          What's that thread doing in here?:Sleeping :Thinking :JawDrop


          • #6
            Could this be the reason why?

            Heyadancer, maybe they're trying to make it in the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest dance shawl. :D


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