Bakka, Egil, Theresa Jill Buckland, Helena Saarikoski, und Anne von Bibra Wharton (Hg.). Waltzing Through Europe: Attitudes towards Couple Dances in the Long Nineteenth Century. Cambridge, UK: Open Book Publishers, 2020, https://doi.org/10.11647/OBP.0174
From ‘folk devils’ to ballroom dancers, Waltzing Through Europe explores the changing reception of fashionable couple dances in Europe from the eighteenth century onwards.
A refreshing intervention in dance studies, this book brings together elements of historiography, cultural memory, folklore, and dance across comparatively narrow but markedly heterogeneous localities. Rooted in investigations of often newly discovered primary sources, the essays afford many opportunities to compare sociocultural and political reactions to the arrival and practice of popular rotating couple dances, such as the Waltz and the Polka. Leading contributors provide a transnational and affective lens onto strikingly diverse topics, ranging from the evolution of romantic couple dances in Croatia, and Strauss’s visits to Hamburg and Altona in the 1830s, to dance as a tool of cultural preservation and expression in twentieth-century Finland.
Waltzing Through Europe creates openings for fresh collaborations in dance historiography and cultural history across fields and genres. It is essential reading for researchers of dance in central and northern Europe, while also appealing to the general reader who wants to learn more about the vibrant histories of these familiar dance forms.