Patricia Cumbie joins the Me Too movement with her memoir that juxtaposes belly dancing and sexual assault recovery by taking the reader into the living room, bedroom, and dance class and placing each body part, each private and public story under the lens. The result is a nexus of many contemporary concerns—campus sexual assault, working class families, female identity, and artistic expression.
The Shape of a Hundred Hips offers an insider’s perspective into the world of belly dancing that is perceived as outwardly fascinating, but rarely understood. The text goes beyond the glitz factor of belly dance to challenge assumptions people may have about it as suggestive or exotic. It promotes the idea that people can gain insight and take greater control of their lives through intentional movement and artistic connection.