Performing the self: An insight into the formation of self as dancer
AbstractThe relationship between mind, body and self is a contentious issue that has concerned both ancient and modern philosophers. Recently, new research has emerged based on Zen Buddhism and the Husserlian based phenomenology of Merleau-Ponty and focusing on the concept of Leib; of a lived body and embodied self, existing in specific biological and social conditions. Through the aesthetics of dance, I will explore how the social body techniques of our specific life-worlds and the conditions of our physical world shape our perception of mind-body unity. In this way, being cannot be understood as a state we arrive at through self-cultivation, but rather a process through which we use self-cultivation techniques to negotiate to be recognised as functional, social beings. The self is therefore not a static entity but one that is performed over again in a process that creates space for both physical, social and intellectual growth.