Student Author(s)

Katie McMorris

Faculty Mentor(s)

Professor Linda Graham, Dance

Document Type


Event Date



Although separated by cultural differences, language barriers, and geographic divides, many global dances share similarities in their purpose, style, and movement. Through a cross-examination of different cultural and global dances, one can recognize the innate human similarities that exist within dance as an art form. However, beyond these similarities, one more aspect remains the same among these dances from all over the world: through European influence, many global dances were degraded and therefore disassociated from their revered origins. As Europeans colonized places such as Hawaii, India, and Brazil, they viewed the traditional dances with disdain and fostered a continuous misperception about the greater culture in which these dances resided. Ultimately, many global dances today, while retaining some of their source value, have morphed and adapted due to European intervention, and they will never return to what they once were. This research aims to provide a comparison of global dances and the different ways in which European pressure influenced these cultural traditions.