Twerking

Not a twerking fan? Neither is The Tab’s Emile Yusupoff.

Appropriation Miley Cyrus Race Twerk Twerking

Until recently, I didn’t know what ‘twerking’ was. I had encountered it in The Hive and Potterow before, but was unaware that I was witnessing dancing, rather than random spasms.

Sadly, thanks to celebrity-cretin Miley Cyrus, I’m now fully aware of this appalling practise.

Twerking involves wobbling your buttocks whilst squatting in the ‘having a shit in the woods’ stance. Psychotic facial expressions are mandatory, retarded arm flailing is optional.

Miley was slated for doing a particularly ghastly twerk at MTV’s Music Video Awards. More recently, she has kidnapped a midget to force into being her twerking sidekick (seriously).

A cautionary tale…

Twerking Miley looks like something from Pan’s Labyrinth, but, hopefully, she is highlighting how dreadful twerking is, causing it to die out soon.

However, a debate about culture and race has somehow been started. Because of its origins in hip-hop culture, twerking has been tagged as a black custom. When white imbeciles try it, they’re ‘appropriating’ a minority culture’s practises, stripping them of their independent character.

This is a bizarre narrative. Culture never stays fixed, nor can it be stopped from influencing diverse groups. If you oppose ‘appropriation’, then you have to reject many rappers and jazz musicians, all rock music, pasta (twice over) and tikka-masala.

Admittedly, some douche-bags probably are that consistent. However, in reality, every single tradition has roots in multiple cultures.

Labelling something as belonging to ‘black culture’ is ridiculous, not to mention offensive. Tarnishing an entire ethnicity with something as vile as twerking should qualify as hate crime.

‘Black culture’ doesn’t exist any more than ‘brown culture’ does. Cultures are not fixed monolithic blocks, they are myriad evolving cells with ambiguous boundaries. In a multicultural environment any lines between groups are further blurred.

Most importantly, ‘culture’ is never responsible for an idea or practise, individuals are. Your background does not determine what you like. It is utterly irrelevant where you were born or what colour you are.

It is worrying that anyone with a shred of intelligence or self-respect would do a twerk. The thought of students smart enough to get into Edinburgh doing something so demented is soul crushing. This is true regardless of colour.

When anyone twerks, they look absurd and disturbing. Good music is good no matter who’s playing it, and twerking is horrible no matter who’s doing it. Race is irrelevant.