The definition of Asian American dance is as contested as the definition of “Asian American.” The term encompasses not only a range of national origins but also a dazzling variety of theoretical frameworks, disciplinary methods, and genres—from traditional to postmodern to hip hop.
The contributors to this volume address such topics as the role of the 1960s Asian American Movement in creating Japanese American taiko groups, and the experience of internment during World War II influencing butoh dance in Canada. Essays about artists such as Jay Hirabayashi, Alvin Tolentino, Shen Wei, Kun-Yang Lin, Yasuko Yokoshi, Eiko & Koma, Sam Kim, Roko Kawai, and Denise Uyehara look closely at the politics of how Asian aesthetics are set into motion and marketed. The volume includes first-person narratives, interviews, ethnography, cultural studies, performance studies, and comparative ethnic studies.
“A methodologically diverse and eclectic approach to Asian American dance studies, where dance is both method and content. These essays illuminate the ways that dance shapes, troubles, and pushes against the contours of what counts as Asian American cultural production.”—Priya Srinivasan, author of Sweating Saris
“Confirms the vibrant and diverse presence of contemporary Asian American dance on the stage and in the world. This fresh new scholarship inspires us all to consider the strategies and achievements of generations of artists and researchers working at the intersection of Asian American studies and dance studies. An absolute must for anyone concerned with the future of dance scholarship.”—Thomas F. DeFrantz, editor of Dancing Many Drums