Consuming Cuba through dance: An embodied ethnography of salsa

Victoria Rodner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract / Description of output

My contribution to our ongoing conversations in arts marketing focuses on how cultural outputs can be used to project alluring images for a nation, turning my attention to dance as an inherently embodied artform. I flesh out how our consumption of kinetic cultural expressions, such as dance, shape our understanding of places and people, making them powerful ways of knowing. Specifically, I unpack the embodied consumption of Cuba's primary cultural export – salsa – and argue that through the embodiment of salsa we also embody the nation, incarnating the culture and essence of the island through and with our dancing bodies. Using an embodied ethnography, which included active participation in salsa dancing communities outside of Cuba as well as embodied tourism of salsa with an immersive dance holiday on the island itself, my chapter foregrounds the power of the body when consuming culture and the power of culture when branding nations. Following Wacquant's (2015) carnal sociology, my findings reveal how my skilled, suffering, sentient, sedimented and situated body acts as a site of corporeal knowhow as I embody movement, musicality, and togetherness within this economy of intimacy.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMarketing the Arts
Subtitle of host publicationBreaking Boundaries: Second Edition
EditorsFinola Kerrigan, Chloe Preece
Place of PublicationLondon
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781003021766
ISBN (Print)9780367898885, 9780367898878
Publication statusPublished - 20 Dec 2022


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