What is the essence of "black" dance in America, and what is the black dancing body? To answer these question, Brenda Dixon Gottschild charts an unorthodox history by mapping the geography of the black dancing body and showing its central place in our culture. From feet to buttocks, hair, skin, face and beyond to soul and spirit, the author explores the endeavors, ordeals and triumphs of this body with some of the major dancers and choreographers of our time--Fernando Bujones, Brenda Bufalino, Trisha Brown, Garth Fagan, Rennie Harris, Bill T. Jones, Ralph Lemon, Susanne Linke, Meredith Monk and a cadre of their esteemed colleagues. Since race and color are usually taboo subjects in the dance world, what the author finds out is sure to cause controversy and turn heads. Written by one of the foremost American dance critics of our day, "The Black Dancing Body" is a key to the ineffable rhythms and movement of dance in America.