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date: 04 July 2020

Abstract and Keywords

The Internet and the representation and dissemination of videos posted on YouTube has greatly impacted the evolution of screendance, especially as related to popular dance—dance broadly recognized as performed by the “populace” in codified forms such as hip hop, in fads like the Macarena, or styles unique to individuals. Such videos reflect how issues of social justice and equity are addressed in the new digital environment. This chapter discusses two case studies, Where the Hell is Matt? and The Legion of Extraordinary Dancers (LXD), which illuminate how YouTube has successfully provided a platform for exposure to certain marginalized citizens and movement forms like urban dance. But tensions exist and questions abound in relation to their innovative aesthetics, rhizomatic spread, and democratizing and social justice potentials. Can everyday users of YouTube foster a more egalitarian society, especially as capitalist for-profit forces and commercial impulses exert more pressures on the Internet? The response to these questions remains complex and incomplete.

Keywords: popular dance, YouTube, screendance, hip hop, Internet, rhizomatic, urban dance, social justice

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