From street dance to hip hop

Performance as a tactic to maintain cultural meanings


  • Rafael Guarato



Breaking, Culture, Hip hop, Street dance, Performance


This text historicizes the concept of street dance (dança de rua) by showing distances and approaches in relation to hip hop. For this purpose, the analysis starts from the cultural history of street dance in the city of Uberlândia, Minas Gerais (Brazil), to understand the complex relationships that gave meaning and form to the practice of street dance between the 1980s and 1990s. In a first step, I investigate the various perspectives that permeate the bond between the popular dance and dance festivals, well as between the city neighbourhoods and dance clubs. In a second step, the analysis shifts to the cultural performance that allowed street dancers to migrate to the so-called hip hop dance. Analysing street dance and hip hop considering their ruptures and continuities, the text intends to contribute to studies dedicated to the presence of dance in the construction of urban identities.


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