Our differences in this moment are profound. Many, far too many, of us are in utter devastation. Many, far too many, have been lost. For some few, a glimpse of hope, growing. For others, a balancing act somewhere in between. We have an acute, daily awareness of inequality, privilege, status—despair.
The open call for submissions to Issue 12 brought us back to founding statements for The Dancer-Citizen, specifically the understanding of the obligation we hold to seek and develop solutions for the challenges facing the communities in which we live and work. We recognize that our diverse roles, experiences, and perspectives as practitioners constitute a unique body of knowledge in the world.
Some contributions in this issue represent reflections on previous work: a chance to look back, reflect on earlier projects, consider meaning and direction for the future in a changed world. Some represent beginnings, stirring of new work and new forms. Some name, acknowledge, confront the breadth and depth of a problem before us. Some offer the “beauty and healing power” of dance forms that arise from tragedy and community strength.
And some submissions are missing. We acknowledge the pain, the distress, the impossibility facing our colleagues and friends. We have heard you. And as Julie B. Johnson said, “I so often cannot speak the words to convey what my body knows, to assign verbal language to visceral understanding.”
Holding still is not an option. Waiting and hoping are not options. For those of us who are able, what is our call, what is our movement, what is our action?
Jane M. Alexandre, PhD.
The Dancer-Citizen November 2020