Document Type


Publication Date


Published In

This Is How We Dance Now!: Performance In The Age Of Bollywood And Reality Shows


The cultural imagination of contemporary India is experiencing rapid change, especially among the middle classes. New communication technologies are being used to reach new audiences and spectators. This momentum of change has further facilitated blurring the strict boundaries between high and low, classical and folk, and Indian and Western cultural forms, creating multiple sites of amalgamation. One such ubiquitous form is the popular genre of dance reality shows on television. These Bollywood-inspired dance forms are arguably one among the most visible cultural products of India's new economy. Using multiple theoretical perspectives from Anthropology, Performance Studies, and Film and Media studies, this book locates, historicizes, and analyzes the dance reality show both as an aesthetic-cultural product, and as a lived reality of a new generation of middle-class viewers and performers. The author argues that these reality shows play an important role in shaping the contours and ambivalences of India's new public culture, and explores how a large emergent cross-section of young dancers and choreographers are struggling to stake a claim in the new culture industry of India.

Published By

Oxford University Press


Chapter four has been made freely available courtesy of Oxford University Press.

An excerpt of this work is freely available online through

This material was originally published in This Is How We Dance Now!: Performance In The Age Of Bollywood And Reality Shows by Pallabi Chakravorty, and has been reproduced by permission of Oxford University Press. For permission to reuse this material, please visit

Find in Tripod

Included in

Dance Commons