Twerk gyrated further into pop culture focus this week when noted white pop star Miley Cyrus attempted, poorly, to perform it on a televised awards show.
Those who've followed New Orleans Bounce and its "sissy variants" know Miley didn't invent the move--far from it. In Latin America, perreo and dembow have inspired politicians to launch morality crusades. The roots of booty-popping can be traced through the African diaspora. Above, a compilation of music videos that show Mapouka, a contemporary form popular in Cote D'Ivoire that was deemed so provocative, it was banned.
Moving beyond the States to other parts of the African diaspora, in Haiti there is gouye/gouyad, in Colombia the El Mapale, in Cuba the vacunao, and most people are familiar with Jamaican winin’. On to Africa itself: in Senegal we have the ventilateur, in Somalia the niiko, kwassa kwassa in DR Congo (which goes by the same name in Zimbabwe), and the Cameroonian zingué. Not to mention malaya of the Afro-Arab communities in Oman, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
I asked Amy Parness, the co-founder of Sparkle Labs, maker of fantastic educational electronics kits, to write a Medium post about gender and the business of being a maker business person. Her terrific essay calls out the problems with “pink girly engineering kits.” From Medium:
Zero UI is the new term for “invisible interfaces”—what happens in the future when all the clicking and tapping and typing is history: “If you look at the history of computing, starting with the jacquard loom in 1801, humans have always had to interact with machines in a really abstract, complex way.” [Fast Company]
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