Dance Through the Looking-glass / An international conference on the philosophy of dance and moving bodies

Through the Looking Glass posterThis conference literally discovers dance ‘through the looking-glass’. It explores the possibilities of dance’s reflection through the combination and gesture of divergent philosophical ‘steps’. Philosophical studies, aesthetical theories, critical investigations, literary responses and research in the field of practice echo the wide range of scholarly lines drawn towards dance. Movements of thought are instruments or mirrors for an exploration of the nature of dance and moving bodies. This conference supports that commitment and brings the complex relation between dance and the mirror before the footlights. It also questions the way in which dancers move artistically and ‘move’ us. The formation and duplication of dancers through the looking-glass has an impact on problems of self-consciousness, body-awareness, identity and the grasp on reality. The performance of freedom in a sensible body puts the ideas of play, elevation and aesthetical judgment to the fore. Poetry and literature as a mirror for the quicksilver spirit of dance prompt us with questions on the possibility to put dance into words. Dance through the Looking-Glass makes space for these topics and moves along with their diverse interpretations.

Organised by

Drs. Elisabeth Van Dam & the Centre for Critical Philosophy, Ghent University, Faculty for Arts and Humanities, Department Philosophy & Moral Science.
With the collaboration of Roehampton University, Department of Dance

Invited speakers

Catherine Botha (University of Johannesburg)
Anna Pakes (Roehampton University London)
Noé Soulier (Université de Paris – Sorbonne)
Nigel Stewart (Lancaster University)

from 1 June 2012 to 2 June 2012


Koninklijke Academie voor Nederlandse Taal- en Letterkunde (KANTL)
Koningstraat 18
9000 Ghent

Admission information

Full package:
two days conference + coffee/tea + lunch

Academic staff + PhD students: € 70
Students: € 25

Please deposit your registration fee on the following account: IBAN: BE59-3900-9658-0026. (BIC: BBRU BE BB)

Please add the following statement: G/00069/01


Elisabeth Van Dam

Additional information

See downloads for the full programme.

Scientific Committee

Prof. Dr. Gertrudis Van de Vijver (Ghent University)
Prof. Dr. Antoon Van den Braembussche (Vrije Universiteit Brussel)
Prof. Dr. Rudi Laermans (Catholic University of Leuven)
Prof. Dr. Anna Pakes (Roehampton University London)
Prof. Dr. Helena de Preester (Ghent University, Hogeschool Gent: Royal Academy of Fine Arts)
Dr. Emiliano Acosta (FWO - Ghent University)
Dr. Jan de Vos (FWO - Ghent University)

Organising Committee

Drs. Elisabeth Van Dam (FWO - Ghent University)
Drs. Boris Demarest (Centre for Critical Philosophy)
Drs. Liesbet De Kock (Ghent University)
Drs. Anton Froeyman (FWO - Ghent University)
Dr. Raf Geenens (FWO - Catholic University of Leuven)
Prof. Dr. Gertrudis Van de Vijver (Ghent University)