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Pole Dance and the perception of the body through a cultural point of view (Australia / Finland)

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Title: Pole Dance and the perception of the body through a cultural point of view (Australia / Finland)
Author(s): Chassany, Iris Fanny Clemence
Contributor: University of Helsinki, Faculty of Arts, Department of Philosophy, History, Culture and Art Studies
Discipline: Theatre Research
Language: English
Acceptance year: 2018
Abstract:
My research focuses on the perception of the body for pole dancers in Australia and in Finland. In this work, I am discussing which are the differences regarding pole dance in these two countries and whether they are cultural. I am also focusing on stereotypes in relation to female and male pole dancers. I also examine the way sexuality linked to pole dance is seem both amongst pole dancers and amongst the audience. My thesis is separated in three main parts: the cultural differences, the dancer stereotypes and the international stages. To conduct this research I have used dance research, various articles written about pole dance as well as anthropology studies. I only discuss the differences in Australia and in Finland as these are the two countries where I have practiced pole dance the most. I will also write about the history of pole dance, the competitions and it's possible future in the Olympics. In order to have as much material as possible, I have also conducted 17 interviews with audience members and created an E-survey for pole dancers to answer. In total 124 pole dancers from both Australia and Finland have taken the time to answer my questions, mostly female pole dancers. In my work I come to the conclusion that the culture plays an important part on the way pole dance is seen in these countries. Moreover, the style that was introduced in the country with the first pole dancing studios also install a certain atmosphere as well as a pole dancing style. The stereotypes are existent but slowly disappearing with people getting to know pole dance as a dance and as a sport. With time, the sensuality of pole dance becomes more accepted. As pole dance is evolving, more dancing styles appear and people's mind regarding pole dance seems to open.


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