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Finding The Pocket

Finding The Pocket

Chapter:
(p.37) 1 Finding The Pocket
Source:
American Allegory
Author(s):
Black Hawk Hancock
Publisher:
University of Chicago Press
DOI:10.7208/chicago/9780226043241.003.0004

Through an exposition of learning how to dance, this chapter dramatizes the bridge between the dance as a cultural category and the processes of embodiment and inculcation of dance as practice. It demonstrates how even the most “natural” expressions are undergirded by bodily labor. By dissecting four major components of the Lindy Hop (choreography, leading and following, improvisation, and style) the chapter illuminates the centrality of performance in relation to cultural embodiment and racial identities. It concludes by discussing those moments of mastery in which the dance becomes seamless and transparent, to the point of seeming instinctual to the outside observer as well as to the dancers themselves.

Keywords:   dance, dancing, Lindy Hop, cultural embodiment, racial identity

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