Show Summary Details

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD HANDBOOKS ONLINE (www.oxfordhandbooks.com). © Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Handbooks Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 25 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This essay explores what dancers from different cultures can learn through exchanges when they involve concepts of nationalism, performed identities, spiritual practice, and the categories of “art” dance and “cultural” dance. A brief but impactful trip to Ghana by California university dance students and academics provides several scenes where energies, techniques, and ideas emerge. Studying with members the Ghana Dance Ensemble, one of the country’s national dance companies, as well as interacting with the dance department of the University of Ghana, Legon, results in enjoying and questioning embodied knowledge, as well as casting light on several questions: Do Ghanaians have the same freedom to be defined as “artists,” or might they be marginalized as “ancient” rather than “contemporary” people? What can young American university dancers learn about commitment to performance quality and the feeling of having deep roots in tradition? How can each group expand on the habit human beings have of categorizing others as having a “single story,” and how does dance figure in the process?

Keywords: art dance, cultural dance, dance, Ghana, nationalism, performed identities, spiritual practice

Access to the complete content on Oxford Handbooks Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can''t find the answer there, please contact us.