Silent Dancing term paper | essay on Silent Dancing

17/10/2006 · This is proven in Judith Ortiz Cofer's essay "Silent Dancing"

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For when I tried to assess my capabilities, I realized that I had almost none. In order to achieve the life I wanted, I had been dealt, it seemed to me, the worst possible hand. I could not become a prizefighter—many of us tried but very few succeeded. I could not sing. I could not dance. I had been well conditioned by the world in which I grew up, so I did not yet dare take the idea of becoming a writer seriously. The only other possibility seemed to involve my becoming one of the sordid people on the Avenue, who were not really as sordid as I then imagined but who frightened me terribly, both because I did not want to live that life and because of what they made me feel. Everything inflamed me, and that was bad enough, but I myself had also become a source of fire and temptation. I had been far too well raised, alas, to suppose that any of the extremely explicit overtures made to me that summer, sometimes by boys and girls but also, more alarmingly, by older men and women, had anything to do with my attractiveness. On the contrary, since the Harlem idea of seduction is, to put it mildly, blunt, whatever these people saw in me merely confirmed my sense of my depravity.

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Cofer wrote Silent Dancing as a result of a device which put together images and subjects from similar themes in an entire creative essay where in some cases, she retell or recast the same stories.

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The song "Mooning" may have been inspired by The Mello-Kings’ "Tonight, Tonight" or The Skyliners’ "Since I Don’t Have You," and though the other songs in proclaim a new worldview of sex and love, this one also trashes the old worldview, reducing the tepid romance of the 30s and 40s to silly anachronism. It contrasts love today (1959) with love yesterday (their parents’), the physical versus the romantic, the play between the old definition of as an over-sentimentalizing of young love, and the new definition of as the act of baring one’s ass. Like "Summer Nights," this is a song about the difference between chaste love and carnal love, the love Sandra Dee falls into versus the more real, more carnal love of naked, sweaty bodies. But this song goes further, into wickedly funny social satire; "Summer Nights" is about two kids, but "Mooning" is about the whole generation.

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