Carving and making space through dance – Older people using dance to experience their ageing body and challenge ageist discourse

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Drawing on qualitative data from a study of older adults' participation in a contemporary dance group, this paper asks what can be gained from new materialist concepts of the older body, and how they can expand cultural gerontological thinking about embodiment. This paper examines the connections between the older body, movement, thoughts, words and spaces, arguing that dance demonstrates that there is a spatial dimension to embodiment. In drawing from models of materiality emerging in gerontology, this paper provides insights about the experience of age, questioning fundamental categorizations promoted in Western culture, and re-thinks agency in relation to the body and space. Emphasising the importance of the material world in the production of the social has important implications in terms of understanding the experience of ageing within an ageist society.

Original languageEnglish
Article number101225
Pages (from-to)1-8
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Aging Studies
Early online date4 Apr 2024
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2024

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