DanceUnit5 - Dance and Politics Image of a Bugaku dancer on...

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Dance and Politics      Image of a Bugaku dancer on Miyajima Island, Japan. mboogiedown. Image. 27 October 2002. Flickr. 3 January 2011. Itsukushima Shrine on the sacred island of Miyajima, which is famous for its floating torii, or spiritual gate. Unit 5 Learning Objectives: 1. Students will develop an understanding of the role of dance in politics, particularly in royal courts. 2. Students will learn how dance and movement was and still is used as political propaganda. 3. Students will learn the elements of political rites and rituals and their impact on societies that practice them. 4. Students will develop an appreciation of dance as a means of organizing, controlling and influencing society. How is Dance Political? 5.    Military procession in India. Painting. Date unknown. Web. 14 March 2011. www.britishbattles.com.   6. The Power of Dance and Spectacle Dances and performative spectacles have been used to reinforce the power of leaders and nations throughout human history. Indeed, another name for this section of the course could be "dances of political reinforcement," since through careful consideration of structure, form and aesthetic, various political agendas have been and can be communicated. 7. Dance presented as entertainment of the aristocracy as well as dances created for powerful kings and emperors and their courts are almost as old as dance with religious intent. In some cultures, leaders may be both religious and
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political leaders, making it difficult to separate religious and court dances. Within the dances created for royal courts, the aesthetics of order, symmetry and control of body were paramount. The body was seen as a powerful symbol of proper behavior. Dancers were to exemplify for the general populous the ways in which a person should maintain composure, present dignity and conduct oneself in public and private domains. 8. It is important to consider why dance is an integral part of the political and royal courts around the world. Ruling classes across the world have sought ways in which to define and describe their power. Dance and performative spectacles and displays are very vivid and captivating ways in which to assert one’s power to rule. In addition, dance, like all the arts, seeks patrons. The noble courts were once the most logical refuge for artists who wished to produce and survive. Artists encountered, however, that the leaders and members of the courts could be fickle. Throughout the centuries, many artists have found themselves subjected to political pressure, either to conform their aesthetic to the ruling order or to make work that specifically upheld the values and goals of the ruling regime. 9. There are many ways in which dances within political realms are similar. Royal courts and political entities are often organized by rank, and establish settings in which everyone knows his or her own place in the ruling order. Events begin with a processional to introduce participants according to their rank. There is
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DanceUnit5 - Dance and Politics Image of a Bugaku dancer on...

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