ABSTRACT

In French urban dance, also called le hip hop, minorities take the stage. For more than two decades, French hip hop dance has served as a symbol of the suburbs and of a state-supported politique culturelle. Drawing attention to its minority dancers, it responds to the lack of public discourse about difference and diversity; developing into concert dance with support from local, regional, and state arts programs, it has allowed its dancers to move beyond the stereotypes of the banlieue. What does this dancing make visible that has not been fully addressed in other ways in France? How has dance performance as a discourse, in the public sphere, helped to shape minority identity? What does hip hop choreography change for French minorities?