Joanna Dee Das: Katherine Dunham: Dance and the African Diaspora

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 - 7:00pm

Wednesday, July 12, 7pm
Left Bank Books

Left Bank Books welcomes Washington University assistant professor of dance Joanna Dee Das, who will sign and discuss her new book, Katherine Dunham: Dance and the African Diaspora, with Sara Burke and Keith Tyrone Williams!

One of the most important dance artists of the twentieth century, Katherine Dunham created works that thrilled audiences the world over. As an African American woman, she broke barriers of race and gender, most notably as the founder of an important dance company that toured the United States, Latin America, Europe, Asia, and Australia for several decades. Katherine Dunham: Dance and the African Diaspora makes the argument that Dunham was more than a dancer—she was an intellectual and activist committed to using dance to fight for racial justice. Joanna Das examines how Dunham struggled to balance artistic dreams, personal desires, economic needs, and political commitments in the face of racism and sexism.

"Das offers an incisive portrait of Dunham as artist and activist whose multifaceted career profoundly shaped understandings of the African diaspora in her time—and in ours." —Susan Manning

This event is free and open to the public, but proof of purchase of Katherine Dunham: Dance and the African Diaspora from Left Bank Books will be required to enter the signing line. 

Sara Burke is a choreographer , dancer, and the founder of The City Studio Dance Center in St. Louis, which she founded in 1986. One of her biggest accomplishments was to learn Dunham Technique from the legendary Katherine Dunham. Dancing with the Dunham Company informed Sara’s deeply held commitment to promoting and supporting diversity through the Arts. Sara is a Commissioner on the Regional Arts Commission (RAC). She endowed a paid yearly internship at The Regional Arts Commission for an African American studying for a degree in Arts Administration, and named the internship after Katherine Dunham. The successful program is in its 8th year.



Keith Tyrone Williams, an accomplished performing and teaching artist, is a proud native of East St. Louis, Illinois and has performed, directed, choreographed, and taught throughout the United States and extensively in Europe. As a lecturer on arts and social justice, Keith is committed to empowering not only his ST. Louis community, but has been afforded numerous opportunities to present in Paris, Washington DC, Oakland and San Francisco, London, Rome, and as guest teacher with the prestigious International Association of Blacks in Dance. Keith is very proud to be among the few people certified by Katherine Dunham to teach the world renowned Dunham Technique, and served as co-writer and appeared in the historic documentary on Dunham Technique with the Library of Congress.


Parking: Lots one block north and one block east; street parking (meters free after 7pm). For directions and public transportation information, click here.

Event address: 
Left Bank Books
399 N. Euclid Ave.
Saint Louis, MO 63108
Katherine Dunham: Dance and the African Diaspora By Joanna Dee Das Cover Image
ISBN: 9780190264871
Availability: Ships quickly (1-7 days)
Published: Oxford University Press, USA - June 20th, 2017