Graduation Year


Document Type

Campus Only Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Second Department


Reader 1

Kevin Williamson

Reader 2

Ellie Anderson

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Rights Information

© 2022 Sasha A Marlan-Librett


The following academic and artistic project brings philosophy and movement performance together to achieve two aims: first, to investigate the possibilities of the dancer’s unique experience and states of consciousness in live stage performance and second, to artistically capture these questions, feelings, and observations about self-consciousness and performance of the self in a live dance-theatre work. I conclude two things: 1) that the skilled and rehearsed dancer can experience a non-reifying reflection upon their performed, personal and impersonal subjectivity and 2) that this partially public subjectivity that is performed allows the dancer more access to their transcendence than they would experience in daily life (in its Sartrean understanding) within the objectifying presence of the Other—in this case the audience. Through the dancer’s control and self-knowledge about their own possibilities, the dancer can resist feelings of shame and anxiety that come along with being objectified from a viewer and take pleasure and freedom from the performance space. The self-referential choreographic work inspired by the first part of this investigation, titled “What Do You Think of This?”, explores these philosophical thoughts in a conversational manner, both posing and answering questions about self-consciousness, performance, viewership, and creation of the self.

This thesis is restricted to the Claremont Colleges current faculty, students, and staff.