“Dance Against the Void”: Derek Jarman, dance, and queer classical receptions

Bell, Marcus. 2023. “Dance Against the Void”: Derek Jarman, dance, and queer classical receptions. Classical Receptions Journal, ISSN 1759-5134 [Article] (Forthcoming)

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Abstract or Description

This article considers three moments from the beginning, middle and end of Derek Jarman’s artistic career: Lindsay Kemp’s opening dance in Sebastiane (1976), Jarman’s words on a performance by Michael Clark in the 1980s, and Jarman’s last film Blue (1993) while holding onto the affective registers of his final diary entry (1994). Considering the ways in which Jarman indexed the ephemeral myth making processes of queer life and art, the author develops a new kinetic-temporal methodology for exploring reception based on the fleeting queer modalities of dance. As such this article makes a series of important connections between classical reception studies, queer theory, critical theory, and dance studies. Arguing that, despite the fleeting, erotic, and partial engagements with the past offered by Jarman—which challenges ideas of fixity or lineage—an identification with the hierarchies of white supremacist Imperialism emerges.

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Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Theatre and Performance (TAP)



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Date Deposited:

29 Aug 2023 09:32

Last Modified:

30 Aug 2023 08:24

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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