French translation of My body, the Buddhist by Deborah Hay

June 7, 2017 | By Visual & Performing Arts Department

Through a series of imaginative approaches to movement and performance, choreographer Deborah Hay presents a profound reflection on the ephemeral nature of the self and the body as the locus of artistic consciousness. Using the same uniquely playful poetics of her revolutionary choreography, she delivers one of the most revealing accounts of what art creation entails and the ways in which the body, the center of our aesthetic knowledge of the world, can be regarded as our most informed teacher.

My Body, The Buddhist becomes a way into Hay's choreographic techniques, a gloss on her philosophy of the body (which shares much with Buddhism), and an extraordinary artist's primer. The book is composed of nineteen short chapters ("my body likes to rest," "my body finds energy in surrender," "my body is bored by answers"), each an example of what Susan Foster calls Hay's "daily attentiveness to the body's articulateness."

By complementing the French translation with documents that contextualize and develop the original text, this French edition aims to represent an entry into the choreographer's documents that have yet to be discovered, as well as a manual intended for the new generation of experimental artists interested in literature as a choreographic process.


Translated from the English (American) by Laurent Pichaud and Lucie Perineau. Original title: My Body, the Buddhist (2000, Wesleyan University Press).

Published in May 2017 - French edition: Les presses du réel - Collection Nouvelles Scènes / Manufacture.

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