Dance, Somatics and Spiritualities
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More New Books

  1.  Body and Mind in Motion: Dance and Neuroscience in Conversation 
    by Glenna Batson  (Author), Margaret Wilson (Author)
    Western contemporary dance and body-mind education have engaged in a pas de deux for more than four decades. The rich interchange of somatics and dance has altered both fields, but scholarship that substantiates these ideas through the findings of twentieth-century scientific advances has been missing. This book fills that gap and brings to light contemporary discoveries of neuroscience and somatic education as they relate to dance. Drawing from the burgeoning field of “embodiment”—itself an idea at the intersection of the sciences, humanities, arts, and technologies—Body and Mind in Motion highlights the relevance of somatic education within dance education, dance science, and body-mind studies.
    If Joan of Arc Had Cancer: Finding Courage, Faith and Healing from History's Most Inspirational Woman Warrior  
    by Janet Roseman, Ph.D.
    When diagnosed with cancer or another life-threatening illness, all concerned patient, family, friends typically feel frightened and helpless. When Dr. Roseman read the transcript of Joan of Arc s trials, she realized that this beloved heroine had much to offer women patients especially. In addition to her fierce faith, the 14th century teenager faced her incredible challenges with remarkable fortitude, chutzpah, and even humour. Roseman here uses Joan s words and experiences to help readers access their own innate courage and reclaim their personal power. Brief chapters highlight issues, such as Trust, Wounding, and Army of Support, with a quotation from Joan, ways for readers to relate to it, and a guided meditation on the subject. These same issues are then re-imagined as Gateways to Courage through writing, contemplative, and arts-based exercises. Including strategies for optimizing one s healthcare and communications, this wonderfully original resource is as powerful and inspiring.
    "Instead of discovering on our own how to survive when confronted by a life-threatening illness, why not learn from those who have preceded us and made the wisdom of survivor behavior available to us all? Janet Lynn Roseman's book shares that wisdom, which I know from experience, and speaks the truth. Survivors' stories, and the wisdom of the sages, all have common themes. Read Janet's and Joan of Arc's wisdom and let it guide you on your journey through life."-- Dr. Bernie S. Siegel, author of "The Art of Healing" and "Love, Medicine, and Miracles" "As an advocate working in the cancer world after my own diagnosis, which, happily, was twenty years ago, I know very well how important the mind-body connection can be. I yearned for happy, healthy role models when I was dealing with the disease. In that moment, a book like "If Joan of Arc Had Cancer" would have been a wondrous gift to me. Sadly millions of us each year will hear the words 'You have cancer.' This book will make that journey so much easier."-- Ann Fonfa, president (volunteer), The Annie Appleseed Project
    About the Author
    Janet Lynn Roseman, PhD, is a medical educator and teacher. She created the Sidney Project in Spirituality and Medicine and Compassionate Care(TM), a program for physicians to help improve the medical culture. She teaches arts-based workshops for oncology patients and healthcare professionals and lives in Boca Raton, Florida.
    The Dancer’s World, 1920 - 1945 Modern Dancers and their Practices Reconsidered
    The Dancer’s World 1920-1945 focuses on modern dancers as they saw themselves. Over thirty practitioners’ - both artists and educators - writings are considered. They include both the very well known such as Isadora Duncan, Hanya Holm and Mary Wigman and those who are now less well known, such as Diana Jordan and Elizabeth Selden. This presents an original reading of a transatlantic phenomenon. The book has a broad sweeping narrative account whilst providing substantial analysis of dancers’ own writings. It begins with the idea of the dancer, relating it to the present day. An introduction takes the reader back to the period and considers how the voice of the dancer has been lost at the expense of the choreographer. Five chapters describe a narrative arc that encompasses Europe and the USA with a focus between  da choreographers, dance students and scholars alike.
    Author: Michael Huxley is Reader in Dance at De Montfort University, UK. His published research is in early modern dance and dance history and includes recent articles in Dance, Movement and Spiritualities, Discourses in  Dance, Dance and Somatic   Practices and R esearch in Dance Education . He has contributed to eight books, has been Chair of the Editorial Board for Dance Research Journal and was Head of Performing Arts at De Montfort University.
    eBook pub details: ePub | 9781137439222 | May 2015 | £30.00 | $45.00 PDF | 9781137439215 | May 2015 | £30.00 | $45.00 Hardcover | 9781137439208 | May 2015 | £45.00 | $67.50 Publishing peer-reviewed, mid-length research across the Humanities, Social Sciences and Business, within 12 weeks of acceptance.
  4. Dance Was Her Religion: The Sacred Choreography of Isadora Duncan, Ruth St. Denis and Martha Graham
    by Janet Roseman, Ph.D.
    Three dancers who changed the face of Modern Dance and liberated dancers from ballet’s rigidity to glorify the human body as a scared vessel: Isadora Duncan, 1877-1927, Ruth St. Denis, 1879-1968, and Martha Graham, 1894-1991. From youth, each recognized an organic urge for ecstatic human expression. This book explores their pioneering approaches to spiritual choreography and reveals unkown aspects of their lives and work:
    * each insisted upon her vision of dance as prayer
    * each was a mystic
    * each had a profound, personal devotion to the Virgin Mary
    * each choreographed work in her honor
    * each portrayed the Madonna in dance
    * each felt herself to be a priestess of dance
    * each worked to establish a school, where dance was the basis for an enlightened life
    The book contains quotes about and interviews with these women, including rare materials, restoring the understanding of dance as religious expression and placing these women in their rightful places among spiritual philosophers.
    Attending to Movement: Somatic Perspectives on Living in This World 
    by Sarah Whatley (Editor), Natalie Garrett Brown (Editor), Kirsty Alexander (Editor)
    This edited collection draws on the conference, Attending to Movement: Somatic Perspectives on Living in this World, run at C-DaRE, the Centre for Dance Research, Coventry University, 12 - 14 July, 2013. Somatic practitioners, dance artists and scholars from a wide range of subject domains cross discipline borders and investigate the approaches that embodied thinking and action can offer to philosophical and socio-cultural inquiry. The book celebrates and builds upon the work of visionary dance artist, teacher and scholar Gill Clarke (1954 -2011), who championed the value of somatic approaches within and beyond dance education and creative practice. This collection of papers covers the themes of: Somatics in the wider social context Pedagogy/Education Intercultural Dialogues Lived lineages Interplay of practice and writing Partial Contents As my attention is wandering: A score for somatic enquiry - Carolyn Roy Not Without My Body: The Struggle of Dancers and Choreographers in the Middle East - Nadra Assaf Disorganising Principles: Corporeal Fragmentation and the Possibilities for Repair - Jennifer Roche Attending to ethics and aesthetics in dance - Fiona Bannon & Duncan Holt At dusk, the collaborative spills and cycles of L219 - Cath Cullinane, Natalie Garrett Brown, Christian Kipp & Amy Voris The Art of Making Choices: The Feldenkrais Method as a soma-critique - Thomas Kampe Motion Capture and The Dancer: Visuality, Temporality and the Dancing Image - Sarah Whatley The fool's journey and poisonous mushrooms - Adam Benjamin 'The daily round the common task': Embodied Practice and the Dance of the Everyday - Hilary Kneale Re-sourcing the body: embodied presence and self-care in working with others - Penny Collinson Thinking, Reflecting and Contemplating With the Body - Lalitaraja (Joachim Chandler) Mythbusting: Using the Alexander Technique to free yourself from detrimental misconceptions in the performing arts - Jennifer Mackerras & Jane Toms A Moving and Touching Career in Dance and Chiropractic - Duncan Holt Attending to movement: the need to make dance that was different to that which went before - Sara Reed Towards a constructive interaction between somatic education and introspective verbalization - Nicole Harbonnier-Topin & Helen Simard Choreographic Mobilities: Embodied Migratory Acts Across the US-Mexico Border - Juan Manuel Aldape Munoz Readership Designed as a guide and stimulus for: teachers,students and practitioners of dance and somatic practices researchers and academics in these fields.
    Dance, Consumerism, and Spirituality
    Author:  Dr. C. S. Walter
    Over the past few decades, dance has proliferated in movies, television, the Internet, and retail spaces while the inherent spiritual power associated with dance has also been linked with mass consumption. In this book, Walter marries the cultural studies of dance and the religious aspects of dance in an exploration of consumption rituals, including rituals of being persuaded to buy products that include dance. Beyond interpreting bodies in a positivist frame, she shows how people derive mystical awareness and connection through consumption of dance, dance products, and products purposely connected to dance.
    "What if we could dance life? C. S. Walter's book is an introspective, fascinating, and thought-provoking exploration of dance, spirituality, and consumption. Her authorial voice drives readers through a very interesting personal and theoretical journey across literatures in religious studies, anthropology, aesthetics, marketing, and consumer research that puts the book at the center of body, gender, and the lived experience of mysticism." - Diego Rinallo, Associate Professor, Marketing and Consumer Culture, Kedge Business School, France and co-author of Consumption and Spirituality (2012)

    "As a clergyperson deeply interested in today's postmodern spiritualities, I found this to be a very helpful book, particularly in my work with teenagers and young adults. C.S. Walter's mystical womanist perspective provides new insights into the interactions between spirituality, the arts, electronic media, and consumer culture. Her 'theodancecology' shows how we all might all become more fully human." - Rev. Dan Harper, Associate Minister, Religious Education, Unitarian Universalist Church, Palo Alto, USA

    "Social philosopher Cornelius Castoriadis once suggested that 'Being' should be examined through other paradigms than the manifest and object-based, for example through the paradigm of a dream, a poem or a symphony. To me, Walter's book is a daring exploration of a radically different paradigm, namely dance, for understanding Being, and more specifically consumption as a phenomenon. As such, it is a most welcome addition and challenge to established paradigms." - Søren Askegaard, University of Southern Denmark
    About the Author
    C. S. Walter is an independent scholar. She received her PhD in Dance Studies from the University of California, Riverside, USA.

  7. Moving Consciously

    Edited with Essays by Sondra Fraleigh
    New from University of Illinois Press

    Life-changing practices of movement and touch

    The popularity of yoga and Zen meditation has heightened awareness of somatic practices. Individuals develop the conscious embodiment central to somatics work via movement and dance, or through touch from a skilled teacher or therapist often called a somatic bodyworker. Methods of touch and movement foster generative processes of consciousness in order to create a fluid interconnection between sensation, thought, movement, and expression.

    In Moving Consciously, Sondra Fraleigh gathers essays that probe ideas surrounding embodied knowledge and the conscious embodiment of movement and dance. Using a variety of perspectives on movement and dance somatics, Fraleigh and other contributors draw on scholarship and personal practice to participate in a multifaceted investigation of a thriving worldwide phenomenon. Their goal: to present the mental and physical health benefits of experiencing one's inner world through sensory awareness and movement integration.
    A stimulating addition to a burgeoning field, Moving Consciously incorporates concepts from East and West into a timely look at life-changing, intertwined practices that involve dance, movement, performance studies, and education.
    Contributors: Richard Biehl, Robert Bingham, Hillel Braude, Alison East, Sondra Fraleigh, Kelly Ferris Lester, Karin Rugman, Catherine Schaeffer, Jeanne Schul, and Ruth Way.

    "The somatic movement field is growing rapidly, and these authors are well suited to represent its diversity of theories and applications. Through their vast experience, they provide a range of perspectives that demonstrates the full scope of somatic phenomena. A wonderful introduction to the more philosophical strand of somatic inquiry."--Martha Eddy, founding director of Moving for Life 

    "Full of passion, care, and creative spirit, this book brings the depth and scope of somatic movement into view and should be read by all artists, scholars, and students interested in working closely with their embodied dancing selves."--Vida L. Midgelow, author of Reworking the Ballet: Counter-Narratives and Alternative Bodies 

    "I was impressed with the organization, structure, and meticulousness of Moving Consciously. It will be a welcome addition to the growing literature in the field."--Rebecca Nettl-Fiol, author of Dance and the Alexander Technique: Exploring the Missing Link 

    "There is not another publication that so completely addresses the merging of dance, somatics, and phenomenological practice. Beautifully written, well conceived, thought provoking, and reflective. It will become one of the new and long-lasting 'must reads' in the field."--Becky Dyer, School of Film, Dance, and Theatre, Arizona State University
    Sondra Fraleigh is professor emeritus of the Department of Dance at State University of New York College at Brockport. She is the author of Butoh: Metamorphic Dance and Global Alchemy and Dance and the Lived Body: A Descriptive Aesthetics.
  8. Way of the Bushman: Spiritual Teachings and Practices of the Kalahari Ju/'hoansi 

    ​by Bradford Keeney, PhD & Hillary Keeney, PhD​
    Step into the imaginative realm of one of the oldest continuous cultures on Earth, the Kalahari Ju/’hoansi Bushmen. Translated by Beesa Boo, a Bushman, and interspersed with detailed commentary from Bradford and Hillary Keeney, this book presents the core teachings of the Kalahari Bushmen as told by the tribal elders themselves. Decades in the making, it constitutes the first comprehensive work on the world’s oldest tradition of healing and spiritual experience. 

    Told in their own words, these teachings reveal how the Bushmen are able to receive direct transmissions of God’s love in the form of the universal life force, n/om. The individuals who are filled with this force describe it as an awakened, energized feeling of love that inspires a spontaneous and heightened ecstatic awareness that opens mystical perception. Having your heart transfixed by this force enables true healing and spiritual growth to occur. Experiencing the force in your entire being, through a vision of “God’s egg”, awakens deep spiritual wisdom and extraordinary healing gifts. Those who “own the egg” are blessed with the ability to have direct communication with the Divine, a “rope to God,” and can communicate with others for all “ropes” are connected. 

    Conveying the deep love that is the dominant emotion of Bushman spirituality, the book explores tribal legends and teaching tales, the importance of dreams and encounters with animals, the origins of their dances, such as the giraffe dance, and specific rituals and ceremonies, including puberty rites for boys and girls. 

    “As the elder teachers of the Ju’/hoan Bushman (San) people, we hold the most enduring traditional wisdom concerning healing and spiritual experience. This book is a testimony of our ecstatic ways. We happily share our basic teachings about spirituality and healing with those whose hearts are sincerely open.”

  9. Why We Dance: A Philosophy of Bodily Becoming
    by Kimerer LaMothe, PhD
    Dancing is vital to our humanity--not one activity among others humans can choose to do--but integral to the processes by which humans have developed (in the past) and do develop (in every life) their big brains and empathic hearts; their spiritual attunement, healing potential, and ecological awareness. 
    In Why We Dance, LaMothe argues that the practice of dance is integral to these processes because dancing exercises a unique human ability—an ability to notice, recreate, and relational patterns of movement. From this point of view, dancing is not just an activity though which humans express our spirituality. Dancing is the activity through which we humans have become spiritual creatures we are--that is, creatures with the capacity to participate consciously in the rhythms of creation, the rhythms of bodily becoming.
    Kimerer L. LaMothe is a dancer, philosopher, and scholar of religion who lives in upstate New York. She is the award-winning author of five books, includingWhat a Body Knows: Finding Wisdom in Desire, Nietzsche's Dancers, and Between Dancing and Writing: The Practice of Religious Studies.
    “A brilliant, pioneering work. Readers join a rich, deeply informed, erudite conversation and are rewarded with LaMothe’s original insights and vision of the purpose and promise of dance to transform individuals, communities, and the world we create together.”—Miranda Shaw, author of Buddhist Goddesses of India
    “A rare and welcome book. LaMothe offers a view of the world from one who has woven together three experiential bodies of knowledge crucial to gaining insight into the terrible fractures eroding human life. A dancer and a scholar of dance, she is also a mother and a farmer. Her writing has the feel of the kinds of wisdom cultivated in older cultures, through rituals rooted in the ancient patterns of the cosmos. She brings her considerable experience of moving to bear on the basic questions that engage us all: mattering, meaning, connecting, healing, loving, and caring for the earth.”—Don Hanlon Johnson, author of Body, Spirit, and Democracy
    “LaMothe gracefully reminds us that every part of our life is in motion and that when we dance we are healed, renewed, and made whole by the natural movement of our moving nature. This book brings an extraordinary wake up call, an energized jolt reminding us that all professions and practices need to give birth to ‘movement-oriented ways of knowing.’ Why We Dance holds a moving answer that will touch the heart and intellect of all.”—Bradford Keeney and Hillary Keeney, co-editors of Way of the Bushman: Spiritual Teachings and Practices of the Kalahari Ju/’hoansi

    Backstage Economies: Labour and Masculinities in Contemporary European Dance Paperback – Illustrated, 30 Jun 2014
    by Dunja Njaradi (Author)
    Backstage Economies: Labour and Masculinities in Contemporary European Dance investigates gender politics and labour practices in contemporary European dance. By focusing on masculinities and job careers in professional dance, this study looks at the cultural, historical, and material conditions that shape the dancers' experience of 'the everyday' as they travel to work; struggle to secure funding; nurse injuries; and negotiate their gender and work identities. The emphasis on the dancers' everyday experience is designed to critically explore and to challenge the established methodological boundaries of dance studies: the focus shifts away from the scholarly attentions that are more regularly paid to the phenomenology and perception of performance, towards the material conditions of dance production. In general, this book revisits the debates in dance education related to gender politics and the well-being of dancers; and it also traces and discusses some significant shortcomings of the current European dance policies and employment practices.
    About the Author
    Dunja Njaradi (PhD Theatre Studies) is a theatre and dance studies scholar working within several interdisciplinary affiliations: physical theatre, dance anthropology and contemporary dance. Dunja is working closely with selected performers and performing arts communities, including contemporary and folk dancers, mainly in South East Europe. Her research focuses on performance content as well as social, cultural and political concerns such as gender, the body, ethnic, cultural and national identity and the negotiation of tradition. She is associate editor of Journal of Dance, Movement and Spiritualities and a member of the ICTM (International Council for Traditional Music) involved in research and publishing within Music and Dance in South East Europe study group.