Shifting Cultural Power
Case Studies and Questions in Performance
Shifting Cultural Power is a reckoning with white cultural power and a call to action. The book locates the work of curating performance in conversations about social change, with a special focus on advancing racial equity in the live arts. Based on the author's journey as a dancer, choreographer, and activist, as well as on her ten years of leading The Bridge Project, a performing arts presenting platform in the Bay Area, Shifting Cultural Power invites us to imagine new models of relationship among artists and within arts organizations—models that transform our approach, rather than simply re-cast who holds power. Mohr covers such subjects as transitioning a hierarchical nonprofit to a model of distributed leadership; expanding the canon; having difficult conversations about race; and reckoning with aesthetic bias. “When we reckon with and de-center whiteness, we open imaginative space for decolonized models of artmaking and art community, “ Mohr writes. “We create possibilities for shifting cultural power.” Featuring case studies of socially engaged projects in the performing arts; a workbook for embodied research; an archive of The Bridge Project's ten-year history; and transcripts of landmark performance events.