Issue #08: What the body can do. Dance and Ethics.

Issue #08: Dance and Ethics.

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March 2015

According to Felix Guattari, ethics and aesthetics go hand in hand. Why ethics? Because individually, and together, we are responsible for the future. Why aesthetics? Because everything, even tradition, has to be continually reinvented.

To what extent then is the aesthetic domain affected by ethical concerns? If dance is an interactive, relational practice of innovation, then it will by its very nature be subject to ethical forces and concerns. Ethical notions of responsibility need not be posed in terms of dogmatic morality (rules and responsibilities) but may be thought corporeally, in terms of force, fluctuation, power, and affect. In short, the ethical is already implicated within the domain of dance simply because we dance. It is found in the tactile flow of information, from one body to another. It is implicated in the choice to empower one kind of dance, one domain, one body type over another.

In that sense, ethics is always political.

This issue of the Dancehouse Diary investigates the notion of ethics within and in relation to the moving body, in all its permutations and combinations. It looks at issues of training, innovation, relations between bodies, including the body politic, or muse upon the ethical dimensions of making art or the moral conventions of what is conveyed with art.