Combined Academic Publishers

The Dance of Politics

9781592139859: Hardback
Release Date: 10th April 2009

9781592139866: Paperback
Release Date: 7th October 2011

Dimensions: 152 x 229

Number of Pages: 268

Series African Soundscapes

Temple University Press

The Dance of Politics

Gender, Performance, and Democratization in Malawi

Hardback / £59.00
Paperback / £24.99

How gender and class intersect in Malawi through women

1. Introduction: Gender, Power, and Performance 
2. Dance and Nationalism in the Independence Movement 
3. Dance and Social Control During Banda’s Presidency 
4. Dance, the Transition to Multipartyism, and Patronage 
5. Power and Performance in Political Rallies 
6. Why Do Women Dance? 
7. Gendering Democracy 
8. Gender at the Intersection of Politics, Democratization, and Tradition 
Appendix A: Brief Timeline of Malawi’s Recent Po liti cal History 
Appendix B: People Interviewed 
Appendix C: Political Functions Attended and Referenced 
Appendix D: Associated Multimedia Websites 

Lisa Gilman is Assistant Professor in the English Department and Folklore Program at the University of Oregon.

"In this carefully documented book, Lisa Gilman demonstrates how the embodied experiences of women’s political dancing have served to both reinscribe and challenge women’s subordinate status in Malawi. Through a nuanced analysis of the transformations of women's praise performing, Gilman provides an interdisciplinary ethnography that serves as an excellent model of intersectional research. She examines how power and agency operate on, with, and through women’s performative bodies and minds at the intersections of gender, politics, and economics. A must read for anyone interested in women, gender, and power in Africa."
—Jennifer Leigh Disney, Associate Professor of Political Science at Winthrop University and author of Women’s Activism and Feminist Agency in Mozambique and Nicaragua (Temple)

“Gilman’s insightful book…. is very solidly rooted in first-hand observation, a piece of detailed reportage where events and discussions are related with the authority of extensive empirical witness over more than a decade. Direct quotation from interviews is extensive and the narrative is firmly grounded in the grassroots. At times it has a diary-like aspect….The reader is placed alongside the author, close to the raw data…. [A] worthy addition.”