NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Back to results
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1222641
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 15
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-0882-4843
Educated Feet: Tap Dancing and Embodied Feminist Pedagogies at a Small Liberal Arts College
Thomas, Sonja
Feminist Teacher: A Journal of the Practices, Theories, and Scholarship of Feminist Teaching, v27 n2-3 p196-210 2017
In this article, the author examines tap dance as an embodied feminist pedagogy through a course she teaches called Critical Race Feminisms and Tap Dance at Colby College, a small liberal arts college (SLAC) in Waterville, Maine. The course combines introductory tap dancing with elements of critical race theory and black feminist thought. Students learn to tap dance and perform the "Shim Sham Shimmy," a dance known as the national anthem of tap dancers. They also learn how the dominant history of tap tends to highlight the contributions from black male tappers in the early twentieth century, and the recovery of the tap tradition by white/nonblack female performers in the late twentieth century. The author uses this history of tap as a paradigm for "all the women are white, all the blacks are men, but some of us are brave" whereby tap is either authenticated through the black male experience or legitimated as a form of art by white female performers. In Critical Race Feminisms and Tap Dance, the author uses embodied feminist pedagogies to teach through the concept of intersectionality and to highlight the educational nature of the beat.
University of Illinois Press. 1325 South Oak Street, Champaign, IL 61820-6903. Tel: 217-244-0626; Fax: 217-244-8082; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Maine