Postmodernism in dance: Dance, discourse, democracy

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

1 Scopus citations


Art fights reification by making the petrified world speak, sing, perhaps dance. Forgetting past suffering and past joy alleviates life under a repressive reality principle. Clear definitions of “modernism�? and “postmodernism�? are imperative here, because there is at the present time a confusion of interpretations: a situation in which the existence of essentially conflicting conceptions is further problematized by inadequate definitions, the same terms denoting different historical phases, and failures to recognize the points of difference. This chapter introduces the critical discourse on dance through the interpretation of Balanchine’s choreographic innovations, which was basically the theory of modernism that brilliantly articulated in the essays of Clement Greenberg and Michael Fried. Beautiful and edifying reconciliations-between art and life, science and culture, individual and society, democracy and class hierarchies, happiness and utilitarian rationality, war and peace-cannot take place only within the time and space of the performance, without tacitly legitimating the existence of unreconciled life.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPostmodernism
Subtitle of host publicationPhilosophy and the Arts
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages27
ISBN (Electronic)9781351621601
ISBN (Print)0415901944, 9781138080836
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)


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