Author

Sophie McGhee

Date of Award

2018

First Advisor

Anne O'Dwyer

Second Advisor

Kati Garcia-Renart

Abstract

This thesis explores the potential of dance for psychological healing, while also examining inherent strengths and where they comes from. Resiliency is explored through psychological research and choreographic case studies. Beyond the written component, the thesis included a dance performance. The self-expression and joint creative practice of dance is a means for reflection, transformation, and growth, while strengthening the mind-body connection and enhancing social relationships. Resiliency might come more easily to some than to others, but by strengthening the protective factors already in one’s life and pursuing further protective factors anyone can build resilience. Adversity’s hidden benefit is the strength that it teaches us, and this strength can also be manifest in dance.

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