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The Geographies of Young People’s Experiences of Participation in Dance

KINDELL, EMMA,JENNY (2018) The Geographies of Young People’s Experiences of Participation in Dance. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.



Dance is a popular activity for children and young people in the UK. However, children and young people’s participation in dance has yet to receive attention within work on both children’s geographies and the geographies of dance. This thesis addresses this gap in the literature by exploring the geographies of young people’s experiences of participation in dance. It provides a geographical account of young people’s motivations for, and experiences of, participation in dance classes, rehearsals, exams and performances at a dance school, a secondary school and a dance group for young people with Down’s syndrome and their siblings in the UK. The research was conducted with young people aged 10-25. It used a multi-methodological qualitative approach, drawing on participant observation, autoethnography, semi-structured interviews and video reflection interviews, in order to investigate young people’s lived and embodied experiences of participation in dance within these three settings. The thesis highlights the multiple and complex ways in which dance is understood, experienced and situated within young people’s everyday lives. First, the thesis examines the space of dance within young people’s everyday lives and imagined futures. Second, the thesis demonstrates how young people’s motivations for and experiences of participation in dance are informed by their knowledges and understandings of their bodies. Third, the thesis explores the formation and significance of the friendships that young people built with each other and their relationships with their dance teachers. Fourth, the thesis considers the significance of the emotional experiences involved with dancing. The thesis concludes with a call for further research on the geographies of young people’s experiences of participation in dance.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Geography, Department of
Thesis Date:2018
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:16 May 2018 15:18

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