Singularities : Dance in the Age of Performance book cover
1st Edition

Dance in the Age of Performance

ISBN 9781138907713
Published June 27, 2016 by Routledge
204 Pages

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Book Description

How does the production of performance engage with the fundamental issues of our advanced neo-capitalist age?

André Lepecki surveys a decade of experimental choreography to uncover the dual meaning of ‘performance’ in the twenty-first century: not just an aesthetic category, but a mode of political power. He demonstrates the enduring ability of performance to critique and subvert this power, examining this relationship through five ‘singularities’ in contemporary dance: thingness, animality, persistence, darkness, and solidity.

Exploring the works of Mette Ingvartsen, Yvonne Rainer, Ralph Lemon, Jérôme Bel and others, Lepecki uses his concept of ‘singularity’—the resistance of categorization and aesthetic identification—to examine the function of dance and performance in political and artistic debate.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Dance and the age of neoliberal performance

Chapter 1: Moving as Some Thing (or, Some things want to run)

Chapter 2: In the Dark

Chapter 3: Limitrophies of the Human: monstrous nature, thingly life, and the wild animal

Chapter 4: The Body as Archive: will to reenact and the afterlives of dances

Chapter 5: Choreographic Angelology: the dancer as worker of history (or, Remembering is a hard thing)

Chapter 6: Afterthought: Four notes on witnessing performance in the age of neoliberal dis-experience

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André Lepecki is Associate Professor of Performance Studies at the Tisch School of the Arts, NYU and affiliated Professor at Stockholm University of the Arts, UNIARTS.


Singularities is a sparkling work of dance theory that reads like an urgent and prescient call to action.

Sima Belmar - The Drama Review