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New book on contemporary Indian dance

By Samantha Mehra

Palgrave Macmillan recently published Contemporary Indian Dance: New Creative Choreography in India and the Diaspora, written by scholar Ketu H. Katrak, a professor in the Department of Drama at the University of California, Irvine (UCI). The book, which includes over thirty images, explores both the historical and contemporary practices of Indian classical dance, and the ways in which concepts of globalization and diaspora have influenced artists in India and in other locations such as Toronto, London, Chennai and Los Angeles. The book also unravels the “multilayered language” of dance that emerges when forms such as martial arts, yoga, modern and postmodern dance intersect, employing the themes of ethnicity, sexuality and gender to further the analysis. Katrak is the founding chair of UCI’s Department of Asian American studies, and is also author of Politics and the Female Body: Postcolonial Women Writers, Wole Soyinka and Modern Tragedy.

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