The beautiful beast: the subversive power of monsters in the aesthetics of dance and individual expression

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Publication Type thesis
School or College College of Fine Arts
Department Modern Dance
Author Zhan, Li
Title The beautiful beast: the subversive power of monsters in the aesthetics of dance and individual expression
Date 2013-08
Description Monsters have been traditionally regarded as large, aggressive, and ugly creatures that live in our nightmares to terrify us with their abnormal bodies and hideous appearances. They are generally relegated to the realm of evil in our fictions, folklores and mythologies, and used as symbols to describe the darker sides of humanity, the things that most frighten us about ourselves and things we do not understand about the world we live in. This thesis seeks to expand our sociocultural and aesthetic definitions of monsters, and to reframe them as sources of inner strength and individual freedom. The creative potential of these classical creatures in the dance world is limitless, as they have the power to subvert our preconceptions of morality, social boundaries, aesthetics, and personal limitations. For this thesis, I have investigated my own experiences from my dance training in China and the revolution that has taken place in my choreographic creative processes here in the United States; I search for the monsters that surround my life and those that live inside me. As I have sought to redefine the monster as a source of our courage, a protector, and even a hero, I have regarded monstrosity as a potential source of aesthetic inspiration for redefining the possibilities of movement creation and performance potential in dance.
Type Text
Publisher University of Utah
Subject Aesthetics; Dance; Monsters; Performance potential; Possibilities of movements; Subversive power
Dissertation Institution University of Utah
Dissertation Name Master of Fine Arts
Language eng
Rights Management Copyright © Li Zhan 2013
Format Medium application/pdf
Format Extent 872,388 bytes
Identifier etd3/id/2581
ARK ark:/87278/s65j0qdn
Setname ir_etd
Date Created 2013-12-02
Date Modified 2018-04-30
ID 196157
Reference URL
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