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Volume Editors: Jacque Lynn Foltyn and Laura Petican
For the contributors to In Fashion: Culture, Commerce, Craft, and Identity being “in fashion” is about self-presentation; defining how fashion is presented in the visual, written, and performing arts; and about design, craft, manufacturing, packaging, marketing and archives. The book’s international cast of authors engage “in” fashion from various disciplinary, professional, and creative perspectives; i.e., anthropology, archaeology, art history, cultural studies, design, environmental studies, fashion studies, history, international relations, literature, marketing, philosophy, sociology, technology, and theatre.

In Fashion has five sections:
• Fashioning Representations: Texts, Images, and Performances;
• Fashionable: Shopping, Luxury, and Vintage;
• Fashion’s Materials: Craft, Industry, and Innovation;
• Museum Worthy: Fashion and the Archive;
• Fashioning Cultural Identities: Case Studies.
Artful Works and Dialogue about Art as Experience
Volume Editors: Patricia L. Maarhuis and A.G. Rud
Imagining Dewey features productive (re)interpretations of 21st century experience using the lens of John Dewey’s Art as Experience, through the doubled task of putting an array of international philosophers, educators, and artists-researchers in transactional dialogue and on equal footing in an academic text. This book is a pragmatic attempt to encourage application of aesthetic learning and living, ekphrasic interpretation, critical art, and agonist pluralism.

There are two foci: (a) Deweyan philosophy and educational themes with (b) analysis and examples of how educators, artists, and researchers envision and enact artful meaning making. This structure meets the needs of university and high school audiences, who are accustomed to learning about challenging ideas through multimedia and aesthetic experience.

Contributors are: James M. Albrecht, Adam I. Attwood, John Baldacchino, Carolyn L. Berenato, M. Cristina Di Gregori, Holly Fairbank, Jim Garrison, Amanda Gulla, Bethany Henning, Jessica Heybach, David L. Hildebrand, Ellyn Lyle, Livio Mattarollo, Christy McConnell Moroye, María-Isabel Moreno-Montoro, María Martínez Morales, Stephen M. Noonan, Louise G. Phillips, Scott L. Pratt, Joaquin Roldan, Leopoldo Rueda, Tadd Ruetenik, Leísa Sasso, Bruce Uhrmacher, David Vessey, Ricardo Marín Viadel, Sean Wiebe, Li Xu and Martha Patricia Espíritu Zavalza.
Volume Editor: Catherine F. Botha
In African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics, Catherine F. Botha brings together original research on the body in African cultures, specifically interrogating the possibilities of the contribution of a somaesthetic approach in the context of colonization, decolonization, and globalization in Africa.

The innovative contributions that consider the somaesthetic dimensions of experience in the context of Africa (centred broadly around the themes of politics, feminisms, and cultures) reflect a diversity of perspectives and positions. The book is a first of its kind in gathering together novel and focused analyses of the body as conceived of from an African perspective.

Abstract

In this introductory chapter to the collection, Catherine Botha explores the major themes that are covered in the volume, and links them to the idea of an African somaesthetics as provocation. She explores how the work of one contemporary South African artist, Nandipha Mntambo, and specifically her Europa (2012) can be read as a somaesthetic commentary on the way in which bodies are subject to the male, white gaze in the context of the colonial past and present.

In: African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics
In: African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics

Abstract

The purpose of this chapter is to study the film “Black Panther” as a contribution to the black aesthetic tradition and as a form of somaesthetic exploration. Our argument is that the film uses somatic aesthetics, and particularly somaesthetics, to provide a counter-hegemonic depiction of Black bodies and to explore the lived experiences of Black bodies in motion. We begin with three commitments that are central to the argument: that there is a Black aesthetic tradition, that somatic aesthetics is a coherent and internally complex field of inquiry within that tradition, and that the idea of Africa often gets mobilized as a resource for African American racial(izing) projects. From that theoretical basis, we provide our reading of the film’s experiential argument, beginning with the film’s counter-hegemonic representation of black beauty and movement, and then using Fred Moten’s description of intermodal transfer to present a racial-kinaesthetic reading of a pivotal set of scenes from the film. In particular, we emphasize the important role that the embodied kinaesthetic experiences of black women play in these scenes and throughout the film. We conclude that “Black Panther” presents an innovative, if imperfect, attempt to navigate the somatic aesthetic problem-space in the Black aesthetic tradition.

In: African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics
In: African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics
In: African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics

Abstract

This chapter reflects on the persistent and blatant exclusions within the sphere of art and culture in South Africa by examining the recent cultural activism (2014) of the Tokolos Stencil Collective. It analyses the latter’s specific activist means such as the deployment of human excreta, obscene language and imagery, and a highly partisan posture. The latter are interpreted against the background of the struggles waged by South Africa’s black poor, as well as on-going, decolonial student protests. An unrelenting drive toward desublimation and anti-conformism is further identified as one of Tokolos’s key activist procedures and is contrasted to more playful and sophisticated, yet more harmless modes of cultural contestation in contemporary South Africa. The chapter argues, finally, that Tokolos’s activism can be productively conceived within Dave Beech’s and John Roberts’s theorisation of the philistine, albeit after discounting some of the latter’s contextual limitations and conceptual biases. Tokolos’s popular, philistine brand of cultural politics is found to be highly effective in calling out South Africa’s cultural and art institutions for their complicity in maintaining social, cultural and spatial divisions.

In: African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics
Author: Lliane Loots

Abstract

Taking an ethnographic turn, this chapter does not offer any definitive contemporary solutions towards decolonising dance practice in South African (and Africa) but offers instead, as the title suggests, ruminations on an embodied and personal dance journey that reflects on two distinct pedagogical arenas; the first is a need to re-evaluate and assess the viability of chosen dance training methods (or what we might call technique) and with this, secondly, the cognate teaching practices. Potentially what I journey into proposing is an attempt to create a critical dance pedagogy that does not always look at Western/Northern based models as the only viable – often defined as universal – training methods. I go back to Ngûgî wa Thiong’o (1981) and his call to mitigate the effects of the cultural bomb and think about what this means for dance practice.

In: African Somaesthetics: Cultures, Feminisms, Politics