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date: 30 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter considers the competitive form of hip-hop dance in terms of aesthetic judgments and the social structure of taste. It discusses how breaking battles are judged, particularly in relation to the rise of international breaking competitions in a global context. The competitive aesthetic of hip-hop dance is explored via interviews with dancers, judges, and promoters at a number of high-profile international events. The chapter considers the complex interactions of tastes, reputations, organizations, and economics that structure the judging process. Finally, the place of competition within art forms is considered, as well as the ways in which such competition can shape an art form’s development.

Keywords: hip-hop, dance, aesthetic, taste, competition, breaking, social construction

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