In this article I explore dance’s potential to serve as a form of trauma testimony. I first define trauma and testimony and consider how literature, the favored medium of testimony in trauma studies, offers ways to think about dance as a means of bearing witness. I further suggest that dance as a vehicle of expression provides as yet under-explored possibilities for testimony because its embodied character offers new forms of affective witnessing in our troubled geopolitical moment. Specifically, I study Richard Move’s Lamentation Variation, commissioned by the Martha Graham Dance Company in 2007, and ask how the piece reworks the traumatic dimensions of falling that have so prolifically characterized memories of 9/11.
Bibliographical noteThis is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Dance Chronicle, on 12/12/2019, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/01472526.2019.1673111
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- Lamentation Variations
- Martha Graham Dance Company
- Richard Move
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Visual Arts and Performing Arts