Dance: Rituals of Experience (Paperback)

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Dance: Rituals of Experience By Jamake Highwater Cover Image


This book presents a powerful view of the history of dance, contrasting its role in Western civilization with its significance in other cultures. Highwater--a renowned critic, author, and lecturer on art, theater, music, and dance--links the history of dance to cultural forces as diverse as Karl Marx and Elvis Presley. Beginning with the original, ritualistic, and primal forms of dance, he traces its decline into empty ceremonial forms while all along insisting that dance is a fundamental life impulse made visible in motion--a spontaneous transformation of experience into metaphoric meaning. Considering the historical and creative context from which dance emerged, Highwater goes on to point out the specific contributions and cultural influences of such 20th-century dance giants as Isadora Duncan, Twyla Tharp, Robert Wilson, George Balanchine, Martha Graham, Alwin Nikolais, Erick Hawkins, Jose Limon, Merce Cunningham, Meredith Monk, and Garth Fagan. Also examined are many newer artists, such as Bebe Miller and the Urban Bush Women.

About the Author

Jamake Highwater is the author of over twenty books, including the award-winning Myth and Sexuality and The Primal Mind. He has written for The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Vogue, Esquire, and The Christian Science Monitor, and has been a lecturer at Columbia University and New York University.
Product Details
ISBN: 9780195112054
ISBN-10: 0195112059
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
Publication Date: December 12th, 1996
Pages: 228
Language: English