By Barbara Ehrenreich

"Fascinating . . . An admirably lucid, level-headed background of outbreaks of pleasure from Dionysus to the thankful Dead."--Terry Eagleton, The Nation

Widely praised as "impressive" (The Washington submit ebook World), "ambitious" (The Wall road Journal), and "alluring" (The l. a. Times), Dancing within the Streets explores a human impulse that has been so successfully suppressed that we lack even a time period for it: the need for collective pleasure, traditionally expressed in revels of feasting, costuming, and dancing.

Drawing on a wealth of historical past and anthropology, Barbara Ehrenreich uncovers the origins of communal social gathering in human biology and tradition. From the earliest orgiastic Mesopotamian rites to the medieval perform of Christianity as a "danced religion" and the transgressive freedoms of carnival, she demonstrates that mass festivities have lengthy been relevant to the Western culture. In fresh centuries, this festive culture has been repressed, cruelly and infrequently bloodily. yet as Ehrenreich argues during this unique, exhilarating, and eventually confident publication, the celebratory impulse is just too deeply ingrained in human nature ever to be thoroughly extinguished.

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An experience of musical-movement transpires. Classical Indian music traditions with a rich inventory of bols, solketttus, tirmanams, varnum, and padam lyrics are used Introduction 21 along with creative musical arrangements that may include classical piano, jazz saxophone, opera, folk songs, and so on. I link another foundational principle in Indian aesthetics, namely the integral connection between mind and body to what I see as rasa’s integrated emotional-cum-thoughtful response in Contemporary Indian Dance.

Social reformist movements colluded with British Victorian colonizers to eradicate traditional dance, judged to be “disreputable,” along with the anti-nautch (dance) campaign of the 1920s and 1930s, and simultaneous, albeit paradoxical attempts to “revive” traditional dance by upper-caste Brahmins and Indian nationalists into “purified” classical forms (sadir to bharatanatyam, nautch to kathak). I discuss early pioneers – Uday Shankar’s “Creative Dance” in Europe (1930s), and Chandralekha’s creative choreography from the 1980s until her recent death in 2006.

Bollywood dance offers dancers more immediate access, requiring little more than youth and fit bodies that can execute the speedy, simultaneous shaking of limbs, hips, neck, and head in ever-skimpier costumes. The film medium of contemporary Bollywood encourages this, as it moves toward quick edits, fast-paced cuts, and glamorous sets as studios compete to entertain and titillate their commercial audiences. ”13 Historically, this led to complications in unexpected ways. Sarkar Munsi 8 Introduction points out that creative artists who did not fit into the strict binary of classical or folk found themselves outcast from the nationalist-inspired recuperation of “ancient” dance traditions that dominated the arts in postindependence India.

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