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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Managing culture: discipline, artistry, and alternative education in Ghana's State dance ensembles
Author:Schauert, Paul
Year:2013
Periodical:Africa Today (ISSN 1527-1978)
Volume:60
Issue:3
Pages:3-33
Language:English
Geographic term:Ghana
Subjects:dance
artists
national culture
protest
Link:https://muse.jhu.edu/journals/africa_today/v060/60.3.schauert.pdf
Abstract:Contributing to discourses on cultural nationalism, the postcolonial African State, and national dance, this article explores the politics of 'managing' culture in West Africa by showing how members of Ghana's two State dance ensembles mediate the surrounding disciplinary machinery to create possibilities for 'self-improvement'. Initially, this discussion elucidates the processes by which national performers become 'soldiers of culture' as their bodies and characters are trained and retrained with rigorous militaristic precision. Subsequently, it highlights performers' artistry, examining how they tactically circumvent, or dance in between, this disciplinary apparatus, harnessing State institutions for personal ends. While taking advantage of the ensembles' alternative education to develop artistic, social, and entrepreneurial skills, performers are also shown to ironically use these troupes as platforms to reproach their State/employer. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [Journal abstract]
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