WMW15
Dance, sociality and the transmission of embodied knowledge

Convenors:
Georgiana Gore (University of Clermont Auvergne)
Andree Grau (University of Roehampton)
Chair:
Georgiana Gore & Andrée Grau
Location:
University Place 6.213
Start time:
6 August, 2013 at 9:00
Session slots:
3

Short abstract:

This panel explores how the specificities of dance, in which the corporeal is salient, make it necessary to conceptualise transmission as a special kind of sociality in which experimenting modes of interaction is intrinsic whether for creation or preservation.

Long abstract:

We take as axiomatic that the arts, including dance and the other performing arts, are both reflective of society and generative of new ways of being. They memorialise the past for present or future usage and invent new possibilities. With such potential what kind of cultural continuity do they offer? Is it sufficient to think of the transmission of artistic knowledge, in terms of technique and savoir-faire, or in the case of the performing arts of continuous regeneration, through the re-creation of "works" at each performance? Do the specificities of the performing arts in which the corporeal is a feature, make it necessary to conceptualise these processes as a special kind of sociality and relationality in which experimenting modes of interaction is intrinsic whether for creation or preservation? What happens when the relationship is not just between dancers, but between dancers and spirit being, or between dancers and landscape? What conceptions of knowledge should we mobilise in order to understand these processes better? May the safeguarding of intangible heritage (cf. UNESCO's 2003 Convention) ever be other than a reification and instrumentalisation of culture by the state or parastatal institutions, a politically motivated form of cultural surveillance assuring continuity within the bounds of the normative? This panel welcomes contributions which question any of these issues and respond in the form of theoretically oriented or ethnographically based propositions to help us invent dance worlds to come.