NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ898279
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Oct
Pages: 13
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 25
ISSN: ISSN-0159-6306
Corporeal and Sonic Diagrams for Cinematic Ethics in Rolf De Heer's "Dance Me to My Song"
Hickey-Moody, Anna
Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, v31 n4 p499-511 Oct 2010
Rolf De Heer's 1997 Australian feature film "Dance Me to My Song" was devised with the late Heather Rose, a person with Cerebral Palsy. The film also features a central performance by Heather (as the character of Julia) and is clearly about "her world". The ethic of engagement exemplified by this film resonates with what Gerard Goggin has termed an "ethics of listening" that entails "listening-as-if-disability-mattered". This article takes up Deleuze's concepts of the diagram in order to argue that "Dance Me to My Song" is a valuable, although at times problematic, cinematic framing of disability. Deleuze's two concepts of the diagram offer a useful frame through which to consider the film, because respectively they map the potentiality of social relations and act as a means of erasing cliche. The film is a raw, visceral text, rich in diegetic sound intended to "fold" the experiences of the protagonist into the subjectivity of the spectator/aurator. This folding blurs and re-aligns relationships between disabled and non-disabled bodies and can be seen as a step towards erasing cliches attached to the disabled body. The disabled/able boundary is further blurred through ambiguous representation of Julia's carer, Madeline, as potentially disabled. The characters in the film perform a diagrammatic function of shaping possible relations between bodies and erasing cliche. Building on the platform provided by "Dance Me to My Song", I contend that when cinema engages with the disabled body and soundscapes associated with the disabled body through an "ethics of listening", new sonic and filmic bodies can be--and are--created. (Contains 2 figures and 3 notes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A