Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Dance in History and Society 2

LEVEL 01 - Year 1 in Modular Undergraduate Course


DEPARTMENT Dance Studies

DESCRIPTION This study-unit locates dance study both in its history and society in selected periods from the 20th and 21st centuries, and interrogates some of the relationships between dance making and dance analysis.

Continuation of development of Study Skills:

- Identification of Key concepts, development of a glossary of terms;
- Analysis of academic writing; videos of dance works using processes of description, analysis, interpretation and evaluation;
- Taking part in and leading discussions/seminars;
- Presenting verbally using a range visual/aural aids.

An overview of theoretical approaches in the study of dance and an introduction to two approaches to be studied in Level 1 – i.e. Dance Analysis and Dance History

Dance Analysis:

- Methods of analysing dance;
- Application of methods of analysis to gain understanding of concepts and principles underpinning dance choreography and performance;
- Recording and presenting analysis of dance.

Dance History:

- Study of specific history as a means of gaining understanding of the traditions, conventions and changes that inform contemporary dance practice;
- The essential differences between modern dance, contemporary dance and post-modern dance, with special reference to notions of expressionism, modernism and abstraction.

Dance and Society:

- Study of historical ideas in their socio-cultural context, with particular reference to dance development in USA and Western Europe.

Study-unit Aims

- Demonstrate understanding of and apply fundamental dance analysis processes.

The study-unit intends to:

- Develop the tools to critically describe and analyse dance;
- Aid articulation of an historical account of contemporary dance practice;
- Develop understanding of dance analysis, dance history and dance in socio-cultural context as different methodologies for constructing dance knowledge;
- Develop understanding about dance in logical written and oral form demonstrating evidence of application of appropriate study skills.

Learning Outcomes

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Demonstrate understanding of and apply selected dance analysis processes in essay form;
- Demonstrate more sophisticated tools to critically describe and analyse dance;
- Articulate an historical account of European contemporary dance practice;
- Understand dance analysis, dance history and dance in socio-cultural context as different methodologies for constructing dance knowledge;
- Communicate understanding about dance in logical written and oral form both personally and in group, demonstrating evidence of application of appropriate study skills.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Engage in describing, theorising, interpreting and evaluating performance texts and performance events from a range of critical perspectives;
- Read the performance possibilities implied by a script, score and other textual or documentary sources;
- Commence information retrieval skills, involving the ability to gather, sift, synthesise and organise material independently and critically evaluate its significance;
- Demonstrate study skills, interrogation of published works, analysis of dance works on video, and critically describe these works.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings

Indicative Bibliography:

- Adshead, Janet. (ed) 1988. Dance Analysis: Theory and Practice (London: Dance Books).
- Banes, Sally. 1988. Terpsichore in Sneakers: Post-Modern Dance, sec. ed. (Wesleyan University Press).
- Banes, Sally 1994. Writing Dancing in the Age of Postmodernism (Wesleyan University Press).
- Carter, Alexandra and Janet O'Shea (eds) 2010. The Routledge Dance Studies Reader, sec. ed. (Routledge).
- Carter, Alexandra. 2004. Rethinking Dance History: a Reader (London: Routledge).
- Cohen, Selma Jeanne and Katy Matheson. 1992. Dance as a Theatre Art, sec. ed. (London: Dance Books).
- Foster, Susan Leigh. 1986. Reading Dancing; Bodies and Subjects in Contemporary American Dance (University of California).
- Jordan, Stephanie. 1992. Striding Out – Aspects of Contemporary and New Dance in Britain (London: Dance Books).
- Jowitt, Deborah. 1988. Time and the Dancing Image (Los Angeles: University of California Press).
- Mackrell, Judith. 1992. Out of Line: The Story of British New Dance (London: Dance Books).
- Morris, Gay. 1996. Moving Words, Rewriting Dance (London & NY: Routledge).
- Morris, Gay. 2006. A Game for Dancers: Performing Modernism in the Postwar Years 1945-1960 (Middletown, Connecticut: Wesleyan University Press).
- Preston-Dunlop, Valerie. 1998. Looking at Dances – a Choreological Perspective on Choreography (London: Verve Publishing).

ADDITIONAL NOTES Pre-requisite Study-unit: DCS1005

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture, Independent Study & Tutorial

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Essay SEM2 Yes 100%
Important - Due to the COVID19 Pandemic the information regarding the method of assessment indicated above may have been changed. Further details have been provided by your F/I/C/S.

LECTURER/S Margherita Borg
Deborah Williams

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The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2019/0, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.