Dana Mills
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‘The body says what words cannot’
Martha Graham, dance and politics

This chapter discusses the seminal work of Martha Graham through a political lens. The chapter examines the complex relationship Graham had to formal politics of her life (which was almost parallel to the 20th century). The chapter then focuses on Graham’s involvement in State Department funded tours to the so-called Third World. The chapter discusses Graham’s choreographic intervention in two of her key works. The chapter concludes in discussing moments of subversion within those State Funded tours.

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Dance and politics

Moving beyond boundaries


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