The Physical Consequence to Knowing, A Speculative Report
Working on this text in this particular context (my first experience of peer review proper) I thought on many an occasion about conversations I've had over the years with dancers who were scared of publishing their writing. Your impressions and reflections came back to me and calmed my racing heart. I can't say I've ever been as scared, ashamed in anticipation, or worried I'd make a fool out of myself as I have this time around.
Alas, I've stuck to my own advice and persisted, insisting on the fact that dancers writing is more important than possible perceived foolishness (it's just a foot in the door), and that every feedback (the intentional and the unintentional feedback) is nothing other than an invitation to respond, to negotiate, to, in Haraway's terms, "become-with".
This text is an evidence of what is and is not (yet) possible, of what is and is not (yet) realistic, of what is and is not (yet) clear, of what is and is not (yet) real. This text is an observation, is a meditation, is a speculation. It is an ode to dancing. Like a photograph, it captures something of something that's developing, something of something that's learning, something of something that's living. It is a document of hope and a call to hoping that we'll figure out a way
and learn how to live
All this said, I didn't have a chance yet to read any of the other published texts. I can only imagine the wealth of evidence captured by the publication. It is an honour to have been invited to contribute and an honour to have been allowed to stay until the very end.
Dancers, this is for you.
i love you. end of list.
here's a sample:
"[...] most people who teach theory to dancers in my experience are professional academics who do not necessarily know what it’s like to be spending the majority of your scheduled time in the dance studio engaging in heavy physical labour. Most people who teach theory to dancers are people who’ve, in the process of studying theory, studied reading and writing, much in the same way dancers have, in the process of studying dancing, studied dancing: without having to explain what it takes to engage in the act of reading or dancing over an extended period of time, without having to make the practice interesting or accessible to someone who doesn’t already have the interest or the access. The practice of reading, as is the practice of dancing, is so discovered to be assumed to be self-evident and is discovered to be assumed to be something a student has already accomplished, so to speak, for how else did they manage to qualify to enter a BA program in the first place? For example. I wonder, however, if the tables were turned, would we expect students of philosophy to be able to dance in the way we expect students of dance to be able to read?"