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Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary Woolf$
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Ann Martin and Kathryn Holland

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780989082624

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: January 2016

DOI: 10.5949/liverpool/9780989082624.001.0001

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Performing Feminism, Transmitting Affect

Performing Feminism, Transmitting Affect

Isadora Duncan, Virginia Woolf, and the Politics of Movement.”

(p.183) Performing Feminism, Transmitting Affect
Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary Woolf

Kimberly Engdahl Coates

Liverpool University Press

This chapter focuses on the dance of Isadora Duncan in relation to the movement and rhythms of Virginia Woolf's fiction, with particular emphasis on conversation and the artists' connections with audiences on a more than linguistic level. Both Duncan and Woolf were attuned to visceral forces and vibrations that exceeded the limitations of their own skin and art. In current theoretical discourse, scholars such as Greg Seigworth and Melissa Gregg refer to these visceral forces as “affect.” Moving between the visceral body and consciousness as well as between bodies and subjects, “affect” precedes representation in art while it also “follows representation in reception.” The rest of this chapter explores the affective current between Duncan's “Art” of dance, as she characterizes it in My Life and other essays, and Woolf's The Waves. It considers the two artists' shared aesthetic of movement and how such movement performs a feminist politics.

Keywords:   dance, Isadora Duncan, movement, rhythm, fiction, affect, The Waves, feminist politics, feminism

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