“The Aesthetic Assemblage of Hawaiian Hula Dance: A Framework for Researching Practices in Their Embodied Dimensions and Global Perspective”
Dr. Lina Aschenbrenner
Global Hawaiian hula dance is a practice originating from and still intrinsically linked to Native Hawaiians. Its international group of hula dancers spreads worldwide. An in-depth look at local and global aesthetic assemblages of hula shows the aesthetic effect—the affects, emotions, experiences, and effect on meaning making—arising in the complex postcolonial social contexts of practices and practitioners. Looking at the example of global Hawaiian hula, this lecture evaluates, first, the importance of looking at bodies and embodied processes, when aiming to grasp the societal relevance of esoteric practices and religious and cultural phenomena in general. Second, it introduces the aesthetic assemblage to successfully incorporate bodies and the body-level in cultural-studies research. Here, a special focus lies on establishing a framework for the research of practices as and in their global entanglements or/and focusing on a global scale and comparative perspective.