“If you can breathe, you can dance”: fine lines contemporary dance for mature bodies in Melbourne, Australia

Jane Southcott, Dawn Joseph

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    5 Citations (Scopus)


    Older women ballet and contemporary dancers resist the pervasive stereotypes of the dancing body as young, graceful, and athletic. They embody and enact a generative habitus, resisting cultural socialization that would deny them voice, visibility, and validation. This study explores the understandings of a group of older women dancers who are members of the Fine Lines contemporary dance ensemble for mature bodies, Melbourne, Australia. The data for this phenomenological study were gathered in 2017 and employ Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis as an analytic strategy. Our findings are reported under three overarching themes: Dance as a Community, Older Women Dancing, and Learning: Choreography and Improvisation.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)591-610
    Number of pages20
    JournalJournal of Women & Aging
    Issue number6
    Publication statusPublished - 2020


    • Aging bodies
    • aging women dancers
    • improvisation and choreography
    • learning

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