Provincializing Dance Studies

the third year of a five year initiative of the Dance Studies Association, curated by Susan Leigh Foster

"Provincializing Dance Studies” works to provoke reflection and discussion around the relationship of locality to the various epistemological frameworks being deployed to study dance. A focus on these histories works to undo the US-centric methods and approaches that lay at the foundation of Society of Dance History Scholars and the Congress on Research in Dance, DSA’s predecessors. It also serves to acknowledge and celebrate the diversity of methodological approaches that the field has developed.

Both 2022 conversations will be livestreamed from Vancouver, accessible to both in-person and virtual conference attendees.

PDS 2022

Daystar/Rosalie Jones (Pembina ‘Little Shell’ Chippewa) specializes in “native modern dance” as seen through the perspective of ancestry, cultural values and a lifetime of experience in North American Indigenous dance and music. She is recognized as a “pioneer” in the field, being mentored by Mexican American choreographer Jose Limon. In 1980, Rosalie Jones founded Daystar: Contemporary Dance Drama of Indian America, now considered to be the first native (Indigenous) modern dance company in the USA. Thirty choreographic works include Wolf: A Transformation (Anishinaabe) andthe scripted dance-dramas Legacy of the Dream and No Home But The Heart. Recent published writing includes “Dancing the Four Directions: The Spirit of Intuition” (Intellect Journals, 2017) which she wrote in collaboration with Elder Edna Manitowabi. In April, 2016, Jones received the First Annual Lifetime Achievement Award in Performing Arts from the Institute of American Indian Arts, “in honor of her lifetime of creativity, inspiring others and service to the field”.

Lisa Doolittle is a dance artist, educator and scholar in Canada and internationally, Doolittle collaborates in arts-based community initiatives around global health promotion, refugee and immigrant communities, and people with disabilities. Her scholarly publications, original productions, and documentary film use the critical lens of Dance Studies to explore performance as a catalyst for change. She is Professor Emerita, Drama, at the University of Lethbridge in Canada. 

Prof. Xu Rui is a dance scholar and stage writer. Currently the Vice-President of Beijing Dance Academy (BDA), he is also Vice-Chair of the China Musical Association and the Beijing Art Critics Association.  Working in both areas of art research and creation, Xu is a founding co-director of the ArtsCross/DansCross Performance Research project since 2009.

Urmimala Sarkar Munsi is an Associate Professor at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and her specialization is in Critical Dance Studies, Visual Anthropology & Ethnographic research. She is a dancer/choreographer trained at the Uday Shankar India Culture Centre. Her current work is on changing landscapes of dance in India, embodied survival processes for survivors of gender-based violence & trafficking, and Performance of local /global/ national identity and citizenship in times of crisis in democracy. Sarkar Munsi is currently the President of World Dance Alliance Asia Pacific, and a Member of the Board of Directors of Kolkata Sanved - an NGO which uses Dance and Dance Movement Therapy for the psycho-social rehabilitation. She works as the Regional representative for India at the International Council for Traditional Music (ICTM), UNESCO since 2017. Her recent books are"Uday Shankar and his Transcultural Experimentations: Dancing Modernity"  (Palgrave: 2022) and Alice Boner’s work on Uday Shankar (Reitberg Musem, 2021). Her essay “Towards a Pedagogic Analysis of Dance and Movement Therapy” in The Routledge Companion to Applied Performance, (Routledge, 2021) and “Being Rama: Playing a God in the Changing Times” in Performing the Ramayana Tradition: Enactments, Interpretations, and Arguments, (OUP, 2020) came out of her research related toa multi-university project “Crisis of Democracy” in 2018 – 2019 funded by the Global Humanities Institute’s  Consortium of Humanities Centers and Institutes (CHCI), supported by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. 

Previous Years

2021: Funmi Adewole (Lecturer in Dance, DeMontfort University), Thomas F. DeFrantz (Professor of Performance Studies and Theater, Northwestern University), Yanique Hume (University of the West Indies), and Jeleel Ojuade (University of Ilorin, Nigeria)

2020: Thomas F DeFrantz (Professor of Performance Studies and Theater, Northwestern University), Lena Hammergren (Stockholm University), Ya-ping Chen (Taipai National Univeristy of the Arts), Urimala Sarkar (Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Dehli), and Susana Tambutti (University of Buenos Aires)