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Decolonizing the StageTheatrical Syncretism and Post-Colonial Drama$
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Christopher B. Balme

Print publication date: 1999

Print ISBN-13: 9780198184447

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198184447.001.0001

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Dance and Body Language

Dance and Body Language

(p.201) Chapter Six Dance and Body Language
Decolonizing the Stage

Christopher B. Balme

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals primarily with dance and movement. It focuses on the different aspects of the kinetic body, the body in motion, particularly the textual aspects of dance. The kinetic art of syncretic theatre is by no means exclusively danced art. There are numerous other forms of body language and kinetic expression which are culturally coded and incorporated into theatrical texts. This chapter analyses other forms of kinetic communication such as gesture and sign language and discusses the crucial importance of non-verbal performance devices. Examples are drawn from South African township theatre, from Aboriginal drama, from a play by Asif Currimbhoy, The Dumb Dancer, and from Wole Soyinka's play Death and the King's Horseman.

Keywords:   dance, kinetic art, body language, gesture, sign language, township theatre, Aboriginal drama, Asif Currimbhoy, The Dumb Dancer, Wole Soyinka

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