Special CFP: Dance and Protest (2022)

Special Issue Editors:
Serouj Aprahamian, Shamell Bell, Rachael Gunn, and MiRi Park

IASPM Journal is the peer-reviewed open-access e-journal of the International Association for the Study of Popular Music (IASPM). As part of an international network, the journal aims to publish research and analysis in the field of popular music studies at both global and local levels.

The recent succession of protests and uprisings following the murder of George Floyd at the hands of (now former) Minneapolis police officers overwhelmingly included dance as a protest tactic. While dancers have long engaged in cultural acts of resistance, this iteration in the #blacklivesmatter movement stemmed directly from the efforts of dancers/activists who participated in the protests following the deaths of Trayvon Martin, Ezell Ford, and Michael Brown. Dancer/activist/scholar/mother Shamell Bell deemed "Street Dance Activism" as a protest tool to celebrate Black Joy in the face of Black death, and renowned dance scholar Brenda Dixon-Gottschild has noted how such actions have gained increasing visibility over the last decade.

Internationally, we have also seen the rise of dance actions such as the Māori haka performed in honor of and in solidarity with the victims of the Aotearoa/New Zealand mosque attacks, traditional Kurdish folk forms performed in protest over Turkish cultural repression, Chilean flash mobs mobilized against patriarchy and sexual violence, and the return of Hong Kong’s pro-democracy umbrella movement as a massive choreography of protest. Whether evoking emotions of pain and frustration or joy and exaltation, such displays link people together in a common cause, and draw attention to global struggles for political and social change. What’s more, the soundtrack of the protests, such as folk songs, African drumming, chants, anthems, and popular music, situates these actions within larger histories of rebellion and resistance.

This Special Issue of the IASPM Journal aims to gather a broad range of scholarly and artistic perspectives on the topic of dance and protest, and the ways in which they interrelate, overlap, intertwine, and bolster political expression. We invite submissions that assess dance in relation to historical movements for social justice and grapple with questions related to how dance and music amplify each other within the framework of protests. We invite case studies that examine how dance is used at protests to enhance a political message, facilitate a call to action, unite people in solidarity, as well as examples of viral dances used for political means. We are interested in how protests themselves can be examined as a form of performance, and the potential limitations of performance as protest, especially when not linked to organized struggle. We encourage submissions on Indigenous experiences with dance, as well as the appropriation and commercialization of political dance and music.

Submissions may consider, but are not limited to, any of the following topics:
● The interrelationship between dance, music, and protest
● Case studies of dance and protests (including TikTok / viral dances)
● Dance as a call to action
● Indigenous dance and activism
● Protests as performance
● The policing of the dancing body
● The commercialization and appropriation of dance and cultural activism

More than a call for papers, however, this Special Issue is a CALL TO ACTION! As such, we invite two types of submissions: 1) Full articles, 2) Statements/Actions.

1) Full articles
These submissions will be between 6,000-8,000 words and subject to double-blind peer review. We encourage practice-based and practice-led research submissions.

2) Statements/Actions
These submissions are by scholars and/or practitioners (industry, education, administration, policymakers, etc.) about their dance/music activism experiences in the form of text (max. 2,000 words), audio (max. 12 minutes), or video (max. 8 minutes). The statements/actions will be subject to editorial review.
● This is a call to action, so if you would like your submission to be a part of a video collage of all submissions, please indicate this in your application. To be clear, we will select, subject to review, 1-3 video statements to be featured in full.

To be considered for this Special Issue, please submit the following by February 15, 2021:
● an abstract of 150-250 words (plus references, if necessary)
● author name(s)
● institutional affiliations
● contact details
● a brief bio of no more than 150 words (which includes the author’s positionalities in relation to their topic)

Submissions should be entered via this google form: https://forms.gle/RpcCxjBfMsB5Z1Qq8.

If your abstract is accepted, we expect to receive the full article or statement uploaded into the online submission by August 15, 2021, at https://iaspmjournal.net/index.php/IASPM_Journal/about
The issue will be published in 2022.
See the journal site for further information regarding Submissions. Click here for a Style Guide.

NOTE: In order to submit to IASPM Journal you must be an IASPM member and registered as an author on the site. If membership is a financial barrier for any contributor, please discuss this with the editors and we could perhaps try to arrange some sort of funding.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us at DAP.IASPM@gmail.com.