Well, I just got back from a little party where they had some Arabian dancing going on, and I have to say: their dancing is a helluva lot better than ours. North American dancing is klunky and disjointed. At its best, it’s more gymnastic than sensual. At its worst, it’s utterly ridiculous, and wanders perilously close to the appearance of an epileptic seizure.
I have to wonder if this is a cultural holdover of America’s Puritan roots. The Puritans, after all, thought of dancing as a shortcut to sin. Now look at homegrown American forms of dancing such as line dancing. Was there ever a form of dancing which was less sensual than line dancing? I honestly think dishwashing is more sensual than line dancing. And I don’t think it’s a coincidence that sensual dance forms in America are generally imported or bastardized from other cultural dance forms, such as Latin or Arabian.
The only homegrown American attempt at a sensual dance form I can think of is the Britney Spears "jump around in tight clothes" style, and to compare that to Arabian belly dancing is like comparing a Big Mac to filet mignon.