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090038 UE Dancing Greekness (2020S)

5.00 ECTS (2.00 SWS), SPL 9 - Altertumswissenschaften
Continuous assessment of course work

Registration/Deregistration

Note: The time of your registration within the registration period has no effect on the allocation of places (no first come, first served).

Details

max. 25 participants
Language: English

Lecturers

Classes (iCal) - next class is marked with N

IMPORTANT: Due to the Coronavirus-related measures, classes are not taking place with physical presence in the University. The course is continuing normally through e-learning. Please check your emails and Moodle for more information. If you are registered for the class but not received email updates please write to anna.leon@univie.ac.at.

Monday 09.03. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 16.03. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 23.03. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 30.03. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 20.04. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 27.04. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 04.05. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 11.05. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 18.05. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 25.05. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 08.06. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 15.06. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 22.06. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45
Monday 29.06. 13:15 - 14:45 Seminarraum Augasse, UZA Augasse 2-6, 5.Stock Kern B SR5.45

Information

Aims, contents and method of the course

This course will examine notions of 'Greekness' present in modern dance in Greece in the first decades of
the 20th century. In a period during which the country was marked by territorial shifts - including the
annexation of regions with important minority groups - as well as military defeat, population exchange and
refugee arrivals, modern dance artists participated in the creation and dissemination of a 'Greek' - both
ethnic and national - identity. They privileged topics and formats related to ancient Greek drama - notably
through the contemporaneisation of the choral form - but also integrated elements of traditional dancing,
suggesting an artistic and cultural continuity between ancient and early 20th century Greece. The choice of
performance venues, often associated with antiquity (e.g. Delphi, Olympia, Odeon of Herodes Atticus) or
with nature, fostered an anchoring of Greek identity in territory through the praxis of dance; similarly,
costumes and accessories (e.g. tunics) layered dancing bodies with markers of 'Greekness'. Dance artists
also regularly collaborated with the institutions of the state - even under the Metaxas dictatorship - and
represented Greece in official delegations abroad. At the same time, while early 20th century modern dance
in Greece dissociated itself from 'foreign' genres such as ballet and cabaret dance, Greek artists drew
elements of technique, educational methods and intermedia approaches from European somatic and
choreographic practices, most notably Eurhythmics and German/Austrian modern dance. Moreover, non-
Greek Western performers - such as Isadora Duncan - contributed to the imaginary of a 'Greek' dance. In
this way, dance became a territory in which Greekness could on the one hand be staged, embodied and
performed, and on the other hand nourished from diverse but selective extra-national sources. This territory
was starkly gendered - dancers being in their great majority women - and class-bound - primarily directed
to urban and affluent audiences and practitioners. The course will examine these issues by studying the work
of Greek artists in Greece (e.g. Koula Pratsika and the first generation of her students) and abroad (e.g.
Vassos Kanellos), as well as non-Greek practitioners active within the country (e.g. Eva Palmer-Sikelianos,
Isadora Duncan). By providing an introduction to early modern Greek dance history through video and
image material, primary textual sources (newspaper reviews, brochures, programmes) and secondary dancehistorical
texts, the course aims to present the study of dance as an integral part of understanding processes
of identity formation and embodiment in early 20th century Greece.

By the end of the semester, the students should:
- be acquainted with the main figures of early 20th century modern dance in Greece and with their
work;
- be able to relate their analyses of dance works with broader cultural, social and political aspects of
Greek history and with the historical construction of the notion of ‘Greekness’ in particular;
- be able to differentiate their analyses of dance from a perspective of gender and class;
- have acquired basic methodological tools for the analysis of dances as cultural artifacts.

Assessment and permitted materials

The class will combine discursive (texts by artists, newspaper reviews, programmes), theoretical and
practical (video/image) sources. The students will work both individually (presentation, essay) and as a
group (collective discussion, peer-to-peer feedback, collective preparation of a discourse map relating to
Greekness as present in dance-related sources). Their evaluation will be based on:
- presence and active participation in discussions in class;
- one oral presentation;
- one end-of-term essay.

Minimum requirements and assessment criteria

The class will be held in English, so good understanding of written and spoken English is necessary.
Knowledge of Greek is not a pre-requisite but those students comfortable with working in Greek will be
given optional reading in Greek. Basic knowledge of early 20th century Greek history would be helpful.

Examination topics

Reading list

In English
Duncan, Isadora (1988 [1928]): My Life, London: Sphere Books.
Glytzouris, Antonis (2010): Resurrecting Ancient Bodies: The Tragic Chorus in Prometheus Bound and
Suppliant Women at the Delphic Festivals in 1927 and 1930, in The International Journal of the
History of Sport 27:12, pp. 2090-2120.
Palmer-Sikelianou, Eva (1993): Upward Panic. The Autobiography of Eva Palmer Sikelianos, Chur:
Harwood.
Tsintziloni, Steriani (2015): National Heterotopia, Nature and Dance. Performing Outdoor in Interwar
Greece, in Parabasis 13/1, pp. 39-52.
Tsintziloni, Steriani (2015): Koula Pratsika and her Dance School. Embracing Gender, Class and the Nation
in the Formative Years of Contemporary Dance Education in Greece, in Research in Dance
Education 16/3, pp. 276-290.

Association in the course directory

Last modified: Mo 07.09.2020 15:20