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Dr. Dina Roginsky: "Authentic Folklorism: Israeli Folk Dancing in Israel and in America", Philadelphia, PA, Nov 12, 2007

The Graduate Program in Folklore & Folklife, the Jewish Studies Program, and the Middle East Center invite you to attend a lecture by Dr. Dina Roginsky on Monday, November 12, at 5 p.m. A reception will immediately follow the talk.

Dr. Dina Roginsky, University of Toronto
“Authentic Folklorism: Israeli Folk Dancing in Israel and in America”
Monday, November 12, 5 p.m.
Moose Room, 3619 Locust Walk (Fiji House), University of Pennsylvania
A reception will immediately follow the lecture

The Israeli folk dance movement was established in the early 1940s by Jewish initiators in Palestine, as a modern tradition of a national invented folklore. Yet, Israeli folk dances were exported abroad right after their first creation, by the national Israeli Folk Dance Section that managed the field. Due to successful efforts made by Zionist organizations both in Israel and in the States, Israeli folk dancing became a popular leisure activity in America. However, apart from the organized institutional side of Israeli folk dancing activities in America, Israeli folk dance instructors who immigrated to the States began to operate on a privatized basis. Whereas in the 1950s and 1960s they focused their activities solely on Israeli folk dance instruction, from the 1970s they also have began to create “Israeli folk dances” in America, introducing them both to the local Jewish American dancing community and exporting them back to Israel. This development inflamed a severe debate between the institutional departments and the Israeli-American initiators. In this lecture, Dr. Dina Roginsky will discuss this issue, analyzing different attitudes presented by varied actors in the field. Ownership, representation, authenticity, and geographical-cultural borders of national products are the core themes of this debate.

Dr. Dina Roginsky received a Ph.D. in Sociology and Anthropology and an M.A. in Psychology from Tel Aviv Universityand completed a post-doctoral research in the Department of Performance Studies at New York University. Currently, she is the Posen Fellow in the Jewish Studies Program and the Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations at the University of Toronto, and teaches special topics in modern Israeli culture and society.

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