Creative Arts Therapies Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Art in Dance/Movement Therapy and Counseling (MA)


Creative Arts Therapies

First Advisor

Rothwell, Kim

Second Advisor

Hernandez, Margarita


Margaret Chace, creativity, Carl Rogers


An ethnographic research study on the monthly gathering of a Chicagoan dancing community called Give Peace a Dance (GPD). The main goal of this study was to understand the potential therapeutic aspects of dance and creative self expression in a community setting. The ethnographic data was analyzed through the lens of Community Psychology, Chacian dance/movement therapy theory and Carl Rogers’ theory of creativity. The main research question that guided the study was: How do the participants of GPD experience this event emotionally, socially and/or spiritually? At the end, community, creativity and safety were the most important factors that emerged as the healing elements of GPD. The results of this study may contribute to the development of a model for applying dance/movement therapy as community development and community activism in settings such as unsafe neighborhoods, public schools, or to support the reintegration of soldiers into society. The model may also be used by dance/movement therapists to promote a more curious, creative, collaborative, and peaceful American society that supports positive social conditions with the goal of minimizing conflict and promoting a healthier emotional integration of individuals.