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date: 21 November 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Little is said about the process of loss and grieving as both corporeal and as a performative process. This chapter presents loss in a way that leads beyond the confines of discursive labels, diagnosis, and narrow views of human suffering, to an understanding of loss and grief as a performative, mutually entangled process between self, other, and the person ‘lost’. Building on previous research establishing links between psychotherapeutic and performance processes dealing with loss, this chapter explores the complexity of loss and grief as a corporeal process (biological, kinaesthetic, non-human) and discursive (psychological, sociopolitical) construction of bodies in motion. Drawing from personal experience of loss and dance-based research projects, the chapter suggests a possible corporeal reclaiming after loss: the dead can be in us, the living, and this (im)possible performative can contribute to feelings of wellbeing and transformation by providing a creative ongoing relationship with the person who has died.

Keywords: loss, corporeal, material-discursive, performative, dance movement psychotherapy, choreography, screendance

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