BSP Podcast: Maria-Nefeli Panetsos on Dancing Phenomenology

podcast update

This episode of the BSP Podcast sees Maria-Nefeli Panetsos presenting a paper from our 2020 annual conference, ‘Engaged Phenomenology’ Online.

Season 5 episode 127: 30 October 2021

Season five of our podcast continues with another presentation from our 2020 annual conference: ‘Engaged Phenomenology’ Online. This episode features a presentation from Maria-Nefeli Panetsos, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens.

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Maria-Nefeli Panetsos
‘Dancing Phenomenology: A New Source of Non-Verbal Knowledge’

ABSTRACT: When talking about Phenomenology we usually think about only the traditional studies of the subject’s perception of its surrounding phenomena. However, when turning the point of view towards the body, except the first steps done by Merleau-Ponty, Philosophy remains under some limitations of the orthological perception of reality. I found interesting the fact that in the history of Philosophy there is a clear absence towards the art of Dance, as the main corporeal – and for Hegel ‘primitive’ and ‘uncivilized’ – form of art which has no place in the fine art hierarchy. Looking for the reasons why this may have happened, I see that there always have been the fear of the body as a source of knowledge, as it has been always seen as unreliable filter of the human perception. However dance helps to see how the process of sensing and understanding one’s subjectivity and may enrich and change the perspective of one’s identity. I would like to merge the concept of the dancer with the phenomenological existential subject, as an example of conscious and aware subject that actively experiences its existence, transcendental self and its physicality into the intersubjective space where it lives. Through dance, borders and ‘merleaupontian’ fleshes can be managed in a conscious way, essentially focusing on one’s subjectivity and its relationship with time, space, other objects and subjects. As Prof. Shusterman already proposes in his Somaesthetics, the philosophical research can be amplified in the embodied experience of other corporeal activities that usually are not taken into consideration as explanatory for the human existence. An involved, inclusive phenomenological process, will definitely find further ways to sense and understand the aspects of the subject’s condition, as the self and identity are always related and influenced by the corporeal dimension of the human.

BIO: My name is Maria-Nefeli Panetsos, born in Madrid (Spain), student of the Italian School of Madrid, and recent graduate student of the faculty of Philosophy, Pedagogy and Psychology of the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, where I specialised in Philosophy and my main fields of interest have been Phenomenology, Existentialism and Aesthetics. Since 2016 I started personal research focusing on the Identity of Dance and its Aesthetics, and later I continue finding connections with Philosophy of the Body and other applied phenomenological and existentialist perspective of Philosophy. I’m currently interested in continuing my research in Art History studies and Aesthetics in a postgraduate level.

This recording is taken from the BSP Annual Conference 2020 Online: ‘Engaged Phenomenology’. Organised with the University of Exeter and sponsored by Egenis and the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health. BSP2020AC was held online this year due to global concerns about the Coronavirus pandemic. For the conference our speakers recorded videos, our keynotes presented live over Zoom, and we also recorded some interviews. Podcast episodes from BSP2020AC are soundtracks of those videos where we and the presenters feel the audio works as a standalone.

The British Society for Phenomenology is a not-for-profit organisation set up with the intention of promoting research and awareness in the field of Phenomenology and other cognate arms of philosophical thought. Currently, the society accomplishes these aims through its journal, events, and podcast. Why not find out more, join the society, and subscribe to our journal the JBSP?