In the American-Middle Eastern dance community, the dance is about looking for and finding authentic femininity. Female participants frequently complain that before beginning American-Middle Eastern dance, there was a lack of femininity in their lives. Halimeda, a professional dancer in Florida for over twenty years, comments: "[The dance required a] confidence level in your own femininity that was certainly something that was lacking in the rest of my life. I am a computer programmer [and] I worked almost totally with men... at the naval air station.... Here was something that was feminine and strong."
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