The viral nature of internet memes have made the very genre of it a meme in of itself. To add to the long list of things already in circulation, ranging from the interesting to the asinine, comes the new Harlem Shake. Not the original version from the streets of Harlem with their precise movements synchronized to intricate beats but the newer one, lacking the rhythm and coordination usually associated with the grace of dance. These 30 second clips took the internet by storm and within a week 4000 videos were uploaded, a tribute at the altar terrible dancing.
Unlike other dance crazes that have gone viral, however, this one has caused a bit of an uproar. Why the discontent? Charges of cultural appropriation, voyeurism, and a consistent continuation of a legacy of cultural theft, among others, were what ignited the blogosphere.
But of course, we have Melissa Harris-Perry to explain what is going on in popular culture, and she comes in swinging with her take on the matter. Below is her 5 minute retort.