Indian Dance Culture Essay Contest

India Essay Contest


India Essay Contest Winners Announced! »

Prize: $500 award
Who: All BU students
Deadline: April 28, 2013

As part of Boston University’s India Initiatives, and to celebrate the BU-India Symposium on May 10, 2013, BU Global Programs announces the India Essay Prize contest for the best student essay submitted by a BU student on an Indian topic. We want to celebrate India through good writing, thus all topics relevant to India—cultural history, scientific achievement, philosophical ideas, or other areas—may be submitted. The Essay Prize is for nonfiction prose and we welcome entries that inform, delight, teach, and highlight an aspect of India in the form of personal or academic essays, research papers, commentary, or biography. Any student enrolled at BU is eligible to enter—undergraduate or graduate, full-time or part-time.

Essays should be less than 1,500 words (3 to 5 pages) and be submitted online per the submission guidelines below. Entries will be judged by a panel of faculty, staff, and/or professional writers.

  • One winner will receive a $500 award
  • The winner will be publicly announced on May 10, 2013 at the BU-India Symposium
  • The winning submission will be featured on the BU Global Programs website

Guidelines for Eligibility and Submission

  1. The deadline for submission is midnight,Sunday, April 28, 2013.
  2. All BU students (undergraduate or graduate; part-time or full time) are eligible.
  3. Entries may be nonfiction prose only, and be less than 1,500 words, typed double-spaced in Arial font.
  4. Add your BU student ID# on the top left corner of the essay (the student’s name should NOT appear anywhere on the essay page itself). Names should appear on the submission form only.
  5. Students may submit multiple entries, each with a new submission form.
  6. Entries written for classes or as part of undergraduate theses are eligible (however, works that have been previously published are not eligible).
  7. The winning essay will be featured on the BU Global Programs website and used for promotion in other media for BU Global Programs. The student will retain copyright.

For further questions and information, please contact Deepti Nijhawan, Director, India initiatives, BU Global Programs at

Please note that the deadline for submitting essays has passed. Thank you for your interest in the BU India Essay Prize contest.

Home » Gift of Song & Dance » Overview of Pow Wow Tradition

Overview of Pow Wow Tradition

For many First Nations people across North America, the Pow Wow has become an expression of First Nations identity. For First Nations people in Saskatchewan, it is also a statement of our ability to survive as a people. The Pow Wow in Saskatchewan is an ancient tradition. Pow Wow dancing conveys important traditional teachings. One teaching is that dancers dance not only for themselves but also for all First Nations people. They dance for the sick, the Elderly and those who cannot dance.


In the early years, many First Nations people continued to attend these ceremonial dances despite threats from government. Prior to World War 1, First Nations people were only allowed to dress up in their traditional outfits for exhibitions and parades. Special permission had to be granted by the federal government to allow these demonstrations. But these events did play a role in retaining the Pow Wow tradition in the prairies. It wasn’t until 1951, with further changes to the Indian Act, that the Pow Wow could be held without interference. The Pow Wow tradition in Saskatchewan had a tremendous resurgence since the 1960’s. The Plains Cree refer to the Pow Wow as pwatsimowin or “the Dakota Dance”. Saskatchewan First Nations people have adopted the modern Pow Wow into their way of life. Important influences for Saskatchewan Pow Wows were the growth of major celebrations hosted by Native American reservations in the United States.


Contemporary Pow Wows are either traditional or competition Pow Wows. Traditional Pow Wows are often held in local communities and lack the dancing and drum group competitions. In the past, communities would pick their best dancers or singers to compete for desired objects such as blankets, horses or dance regalia. Today, dancers and singers compete for cash prizes. Some dancers earn their living from these competitions and from the making of Pow Wow regalia. Some competition dancers stay in shape through exercise regimens and diligent practice.


One important aspect of Pow Wows is the honouring of our First Nations Veterans. Veterans are asked to carry flags in the Grand Entry, to retrieve dropped Eagle feathers and to provide prayers throughout the event. The honouring of our Veterans is a reflection of the First Nations place of their service. The Veterans’ willingness to give their lives in the service of others merits our highest respect. This honouring of the Veterans is also reflective of the warrior tradition of First Nations. (Cultural Teachings: First Nations Protocols and Methodologies pp 25-6).

0 thoughts on “Indian Dance Culture Essay Contest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *