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Dance 460 / 461: Dance History: Dance History

Course descriptions

460: Dance History: Ancient through 1850

1. Students will critically analyze, synthesize, internalize, and apply to present day dance prevalent in Western civilization, dance information gleaned through the study of dance within tribal cultures and ancient through romantic historical periods. (To be evaluated via midterm and final written examinations)

461: Dance History: 1850 to Present

1. Students will critically analyze, synthesize, and internalize key Western dance history information focusing on 1850 to the present. (To be evaluated via midterm and final written examinations)

Internet Resources

"It is hoped that this work may be of some use illustrating the costume, position and accessories of the dance in various periods." Text accompanies the images.To download a complete copy of this text yourself, visit .

A list of websites which are relevant to specific periods of dance history, beginning with the Medieval and Renaissance periods in Europe. Also some general dance websites.

Article discusses 18th and 19th century American dance, its origins, and social roles, as well as types of dance, dance etiquette and fashion. Text is accompanied by images taken from dance programs, manuals, sheet music and periodicals of the era.

From the Library of Congress, over 200 social dance manuals. Includes dance instruction manuals, as well as a significant number of antidance manuals, histories, treatises on etiquette, and more.

Brief preview version of a full-length documentary. Dance historians, modern dance instructors, and choreographers trace the evolution of modern dance and postmodern dance.

This exhibit from the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts focuses on the Cia Fornaroli Collection which covers Italian dance history from the Renaissance to the early twentieth century. 

DHC is a national alliance of institutions holding significant collections of materials documenting the history of dance. Its mission is to preserve, make accessible, enhance and augment the materials that document the artistic accomplishments in dance of the past, present, and future.

Performing Arts Librarian

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Myrna Layton
4431 HBLL
Phone or Text 801-422-4334
Subjects: Music & Dance, Theatre