Dance and Movement


Researching dance and movement offers unique opportunities to understand the world as lived and the relationships between people in unique sociocultural contexts. Framed within various philosophical perspectives and within a qualitative research paradigm, embodied, lived dance experiences provide knowledge and understanding. Relevant methodologies that engage in research on movement are discussed, with specific focus on dance research. Identifying key perspectives for dance research from anthropology and ethnography, phenomenology, feminist research and creative practice as research, points to methodologies and methods that align with these perspectives. Drawing on qualitative perspectives and methodologies, specific methods discussed include participant observation, field notes, interviews, collective discussions and focus groups, phenomenological description (using bracketing and variation), and experiential methods (somatic inquiry and improvisation). Also discussed is dance research and 21st-century feminist perspectives, particularly the feminist method of in-depth interviewing. The entry also outlines issues facing the dancing researcher in terms of reflexivity, intersubjectivity, and ethical research design. Furthermore, how unique methodologies and creative methods that have arisen from dancer’s embodied ways of knowing serve to expand knowledge is considered. Specific methods discussed from the methodology of creative practice as research are dance making, creative journaling, and dancing the research.

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