Returning to the well : an inquiry into women's experiences in community-based expressive movement sessions
Davison, Mischa Louise
The present study explored 12 women’s experiences in five community-based improvisational movement sessions. The study was two-pronged in nature, attending to the experience of expressive movement and somatic awareness exercises as well as the experience of gathering together as women. Session activities were taken from movement and somatic practices such as Authentic Movement, the 5Rhythms®, YogaDance®, the Big Fat Ass Dance Class®, theatre-based exercises, contact improvisation and African Dance. The chosen methodology was hermeneutic phenomenology using a weekly sharing circle, post-session interviews, and journal entries as data. Although inquiring into both psychological and movement experiences, the study did not derive from a formal Dance/Movement Therapy perspective but instead, prioritized the women’s own voices in order to elucidate the inherent experience and worth of expressive movement within a community framework. Three core constructs arose from my analysis: Conscious Embodiment, Conscious Play and Conscious Connection. The underlying role of relationality is highlighted in the final chapter. Findings contribute to a preventive and resiliency orientation as opposed to the more typical clinical and therapeutic research found in the field of Dance/Movement Therapy.
DegreeMaster of Education (M.Ed.)
SupervisorNicol, Jennifer A. J.
CommitteeMartin, Stephanie; Kipling Brown, Ann; Kalyn, Brenda