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Zarf & Portakal: Dance as a medium for understanding experiences of violence

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The dance performance Zarf & Portakal was staged on the 11 February 2016 at the Cemal Resit Rey Concert Hall, Istanbul. It opened a concert addressing the issue of ‘Violence against Women’, organized by the Turkish percussionist Okay Temiz. Its title is a metaphorical expression of two powerful sensations that emerged through the investigation of this subject through dance. Zarf is the Turkish word for envelope, evoked by the clothing and concealment of a woman’s body and existence. The concept of female jouissance, as used by Hélène Cixous to describe the physical, mental and spiritual aspects that come together in female sexual pleasure, is expressed through Portakal, meaning an orange, the fruit.
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Keywords: Turkey; body–mind relationship; dance-performance; empathy; somatic experience; violence

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Aalto University

Publication date: December 1, 2018

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  • This journal focuses on the relationship between dance and somatic practices, and the influence of this body of practice on the wider performing arts. The journal will be aimed at scholars and artists, providing a space for practitioners and theorists to debate the work, to consider the impact and influence of the work on performance, the interventions that somatic practices can have on other disciplines and the implications for research and teaching.
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