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date: 23 November 2017

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter explores African American social dance structures of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, in which improvisation operates as a crucial methodology and ideology. It demonstrates the unimpeachable centrality of the physical practice of improvisation and shows that “creating while doing,” or consistently asking questions while moving, becomes foundational to the emergence of a black social self in communion with others.

Keywords: African American social dance, identity formation, corporeal orature

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