Belly dance or oriental dance?
In Arabic, the dance is called “raqs sharqy”, literally meaning “oriental dance”.
Although it was performed, in the pharaoh’s times, as a fertility dance that emphasized the belly, we are almost sure the appellation “Belly Dance” is a western deformation of “Baladi Dance” (dance from the country).
The two pieces costumes, revealing made-up belly-buttons, appeared in Egypt in the Fifties as a response to the occidental expectation.
I have the feeling “Belly Dance” is better perceived than its French translation “Danse du Ventre” which, apart from being reductive (the whole body dances, not only the belly), lacks an artistic connotation.
For instance, you remember there was a fun belly dancer in this couscous restaurant, but you couldn’t say how she danced like, whereas you will make sure to get good tickets for your favorite oriental dancer’s next performance.
Maybe just a vocabulary issue, but in the marketing era, a very important one!