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The Society for Dance Documentation and History:
A New Chapter in the History of Dance Studies



The Society for Dance Documentation and History was created in May 2014 after the Korea Society for Dance Documentation (established in 2001 to contribute to the improvement of dance studies through academic activities and exchanges), and the Society for the History of Korean Dance (established in 2002 to establish the foundation of dance studies as a human cultural asset by identifying the origin, change and transmission of Eastern and Western dance).


With the advent of interdisciplinary research in the 21st century, dance scholars undertook a merger between academic societies for the first time in order to reflect the trend of the time. The merger of these two societies signaled a new beginning for circles of dance scholars who had been busy in producing tangible research results, and has been part of a conscientious choice to demonstrate that dance studies is truly a practical and pragmatic academic discipline that has a bearing on the art of dance. It is rare to see a merger between societies that are ten or more year old in Korea. It would have been impossible if it was not for the sacrifices and concessions made by members of both dance societies, a point of pride for all members.


The Society for Dance Documentation and History will strive to support the following academic activities in an effort to make every member of the society proud.


First, the society will lead useful and productive research activities. It will make the Journal of Dance Society for Documentation and History, which is registered on the list of National Research Foundations of Korea, a world-class journal by adhering to its guidelines, publishing the Journal every quarter, and strictly managing its content. In addition, the society will encourage various academic activities in dance studies by publishing a series of dance studies books, hosting national and international academic conferences and monthly special lectures, and cultivating and giving awards to young dance scholars. Furthermore, it will hold a writing forum for dance scholars and publish information booklets on research ethics, thereby improving research ethics in dance studies.


Second, the society encourages the convergence of history and documentation. Dance, the expression of human bodies, disappears as soon as it is completed. Therefore, without documentation, nothing is left. As such, documentation and history of dance are two sides of the same coin. When both of them are present, only then can in-depth research in dance studies be done. The Journal of the Society for Dance for Documentation and History is the product of the society’s effort to bring together documentation and history. In years to come, the society will document various dances through special editions and create new theories and methods.


Third, the society will promote the convergence of research and practice. Various dance performances have been executed by dance societies, yet they did not yield tangible results until now due to the failure to bring research and practice together. The society will showcase dance performances, and the embodiment of convergence between research and practice in a way that reflects the expertise of dance documentation and history on dance floors. We believe that it is also our duty to make Korean dance a core element of popular Korean culture through pragmatic research.


Fourth, the society strives for glocalization of dance studies. It will take firm roots in Korea while exploring roles in contributing to dance studies not only in Asia but around the world. To this end, the society will fully support international academic exchanges and cooperation among dance scholars and societies. Moreover, key issues and trends in dance studies both at home and abroad will be investigated and published in the Journal of the Society for Dance for Documentation and History. This will encourage timely discussion among dance scholars.


  • Co-Presidents of
    The Society for Dance
    Documentation and History

    Kim Yun-mi
  • Documentation and study of the history of dance is exceedingly important since dance, by its nature, disappears as soon as it is performed. The Society for Dance Documentation and History is a society that contributes to keeping records of and documenting dancers’ precious artworks. The members of the society will propose creative research perspectives to bring out the multidimensionality of dance, transcending beyond conventional research. Furthermore, dance scholars can find their strongest supporter in the society. Above all, the society will do its very best to remain a critical part of the Korean dance history.

    Thank you,

  • Co-Presidents of
    The Society for Dance
    Documentation and History

    Cho Gi-sook