Moving Bodies and Social Justice Premieres Five-College Dance Symposia

Posted on January 29, 2021

A new series highlighting the activist nature of movement organized by Ohio Five dance departments features public guest scholar appearances and workshops, begins February 18.

Oberlin College Dance Department is pleased to announce “Moving Bodies and Social Justice,” a new collaboration between the dance departments of The Five Colleges of Ohio. This series of virtual speaker presentations, workshops and pedagogical conversations will take place throughout the spring semester.  Centered around Naomi Bragin’s concept of “kinethics” (which “combines kinetic, kinship, ethics-aesthetics and kinesthetic”) the series invites participants and audience to consider: what are the ethics embedded in our movement practices?

“We want to find a way to be together and breathe together as we commit ourselves to highlighting the importance of inclusion,” commented Ann Cooper Albright, chair of the Oberlin College Dance Department and project leader.  “Our project provides opportunities to explore how systemic racism operates in our own spaces and classes, unpack critical and aesthetic assumptions and recognize the historical injustices in our field. Our interactive workshops with students and faculty will bring together voices and participation from multiple perspectives, disciplines, and fields of study.”

Sponsored by the Ohio Five Collaborative Grant program in conjunction with the Dance Departments of Oberlin, Wooster, Kenyon, Denison, and Ohio Wesleyan University with assistance from Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies and Title 9 programs at Oberlin, the symposia are organized around the topics of Kinethics (February 18th and 26th); Body Positivity: Radical Self Love and Social Transformation (March 18th), and Queer Kinethics (April 15th and 22nd).

Invited artists/scholars will give public presentations on Thursday evenings, followed by faculty discussions about pedagogy and curriculum, as well as student-curated movement and making workshops. Events include:

  • Naomi Macalalad Bragin will present Black Power of Hip Hop Dance: On Kinethic Politics on Thursday, February 18th, 2021 at 7 pm.
  • Mayfield brooks will present A discourse for de-composing dance and choreographing breath on Thursday, February 25th, 2021 at 7 pm.
  • Sydnie L. Mosley and Sharon Udoh will lead a roundtable discussion, Body Positivity: Radical Self-Love and Social Transformation, on Thursday, March 18th, 2021 at 7 pm 
  • Thomas F. DeFrantz will present Making*Queering*Dancing on Thursday, April 15th, 2021 at 7 pm.
  • Jaamil Olawale Kosoko will present The Transgressive Body Workshop on Thursday, April 22nd, 2021 at 7 pm.

ALL EVENTS ABOVE ARE FREE AND OPEN TO THE PUBLIC For more information, including Zoom links for events: