The Body of New Asian Dance Music
Posted: 20 Jul 2010
Date Written: September 4, 2009
A youth culture has been visible in clubs within and outside India since the mid-eighties in which a genre of music dubbed ‘new Asian dance music’ by the British media, consisting mainly of Bhangra and Bollywood remixes, emerges as the most important site for the production of new ethnicities as brown, black and white bodies mingle on the dance floor. As bodies in motion mimic the gestures and movements of Bhangra and Bollywood dancers, the dancing body becomes a means of performing and negotiating difference in the space of multiculturalism.
Drawing on my fieldwork in college fests, community functions and clubs in Kharagpur, Kolkata, New Delhi, Chandigarh, Bangalore, Sydney, Melbourne, Toronto and New York, I will examine the dance floor as a liminal space in which bodily signifiers and movements perform a dialectic of desire to resist prohibitions and constraints of everyday life.
Keywords: Youth culture, Bhangra, Bollywood, new Asian dance music, multiculturalism, remix
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