A Moresque dance. Circa 1515

Black Moves: Race, Dance, and Power in Early Modern Europe

Noémie Ndiaye, Assistant Professor of English at the University of Chicago

Performing Arts Department Colloquium 2020-2021


Noémie Ndiaye traces the development and circulation of a particularly vivid  kinetic idiom of blackness across the porous borders of early modern Europe. Paying particular attention to the expression of "black dances" in Spanish and English performance cultures, she explores the ambivalent economy of interracial power relations in which those dances participated and intervened.


Noémie Ndiaye, PhD is an Assistant Professor of English at the University of Chicago. She works on representations of race and gender in early modern English, French, and Spanish theatre and performance culture. She has published articles in peer-reviewed journals (including Renaissance Drama, Early Theatre, English Literary Renaissance, and Literature Compass) and various edited collections. She is currently at work on her first monograph tentatively entitled Scripts of Blackness: Early Modern Performance Culture and the Making of Race.


Graphic Image: A Moresque dance. Circa 1515
Freydal: des Kaisers Maximilian I. Turniere und Mummereien. Vienna, 1882 
Fac simile of Freydal, Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Signatur: K.K. 5073
Phirter, Gall, Frethworest, Gleisser, Drechsel p. 36.