Date of Award

5-12-2015

Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

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

Department

Creative Arts Therapies

First Advisor

Imus, Susan

Second Advisor

Downey, Laura

Third Advisor

Allen, Laura

Keywords

dance/movement therapy, multiracial, identity, insensitivities, pride, counseling, embodiment, culture

Abstract

While there is some research on dance/movement therapy (DMT) and people of Color, there is no research specifically on the use of DMT with multiracial people. This heuristic study explored the embodied experience of being multiracial and how that experience could inform the practice of DMT to better meet the possible needs of multiracial clients. The researcher was a 24 year old multiracial female graduate student. Data collection lasted for 12 weeks and consisted of experiences in which the researcher’s multiracial heritage was highlighted. Data was collected through three self-interviews and artistic journaling. The researcher used Forinash’s adapted form of manual analysis to analyze the self-interviews and Moustakas’ organic approach for heuristic research data collection to analyze the artistic journal. Analysis yielded three major themes, each with sub-themes, that captured the researcher’s embodied multiracial experience: Identity (Belonging/Not Belonging, In-between, and Appearance), Insensitivities (What are you?, Exoticism, External Labeling, and Racism), and Multiracial Pride (Acceptance). Implications for multicultural competency in DMT include embodying in-between and finding stability, finding stability within belonging, and using embodied self-awareness to investigate patterns of responding to microaggressions and explore empowering responses. 106 pages.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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