‘I want to tell them how I feel and how black people feel’
Gumboot dance in South Africa
in Dance and politics

This chapter discusses Gumboots dance in South Africa. Gold miners were not allowed to speak and developed a highly elaborate system of signification using their bodies and gumboots. That system was developed into a unique style of dance. The chapter discusses the development of Gumboot dance and its choreographic characteristics. It then focuses on the use of Gumboots dance within the Hungry Earth, a pivotal play within the history of Apartheid in South Africa. The chapter discusses the dialectic of subversion and cultural appropriation within this example

Dance and politics

Moving beyond boundaries


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