Wigman’s witches: Reformism, Orientalism, Nazism

Kolb, Alexandra (2016) Wigman’s witches: Reformism, Orientalism, Nazism. Dance Research Journal, 48 (2) . pp. 26-43. ISSN 0149-7677 (doi:10.1017/S014976771600019X)

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This paper investigates the three versions of Mary Wigman’s Hexentanz (Witch Dance) in the context of the different political regimes which they spanned. The changing cultural milieus shaped – through Wigman’s imagination if not necessarily consciously – the works’ forms and iconographies. The witch figure relates to pre-industrial, pre-Christian Germanic identity and sparked considerable interest among völkisch and indeed Nazi groups. Wigman’s dances present a kaleidoscope of different treatments of the witch motif, encompassing (variously) the life reform movement, an intercultural fusion with oriental performance traditions, and a strand of paganism which also influenced National Socialism. They converge, however, around a unifying critique of modernity.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Media and Performing Arts > Performing Arts > Dance group
Item ID: 20071
Notes on copyright: This article has been published in a revised form in Dance Research Journal http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S014976771600019X. This version is free to view and download for private research and study only. Not for re-distribution, re-sale or use in derivative works. © Congress on Research in Dance 2016.
Depositing User: Alexandra Kolb
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2016 13:03
Last Modified: 01 Jun 2019 05:14
URI: https://eprints.mdx.ac.uk/id/eprint/20071

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