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Presented By: Institute for the Humanities

Desire and Evidence: Dancing in the Archive with Jill Johnston

Clare Croft, dance

From the film "Town Bloody Hall" From the film "Town Bloody Hall"
From the film "Town Bloody Hall"
Who do you find in the archive—your subject, yourself, your desire, or all three? This talk takes an autoethnographic approach to researching dance critic and lesbian feminist activist Jill Johnston. Through close readings of Johnston’s writing about New York postmodern dance and coming out as a lesbian, Croft considers how bodies meet across time in archival research.

Photo credit : From the film "Town Bloody Hall" by Chris Hegedus and DA Pennebaker Courtesy Pennebaker Hegedus Films. Please visit

Clare Croft is a dance historian and theorist, and a sometimes dramaturg and curator. She is the editor and curator of Queer Dance: Meanings and Makings (Oxford 2017) and the author of Dancers as Diplomats: American Choreography in Cultural Exchange (Oxford 2015). Her writing has appeared in a range of publications in journalism, including The Brooklyn Rail, The Washington Post, and the Austin American Statesman; and in academia, including Theatre Journal, Dance Research Journal, and Theatre Topics. She is Assistant professor of Dance at the University of Michigan, and previously was a postdoctoral fellow in the Society of Fellows, also at Michigan.
From the film "Town Bloody Hall" From the film "Town Bloody Hall"
From the film "Town Bloody Hall"

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