idocde » Editorial
BIG UPDATE! a NEW Symposium and more…
reflections on the 2022 IDOCDE symposium
The April Issue – symposium description is here
The March Issue
The February Issue
The November Issue
making place for making place
Nancy Stark Smith
The May Issue: Onwards with IDOCDE!
IDOCDE Virtual Meetings starting soon!
The December Issue
The September Issue
on symposium scheduling and languaging against the odds
on beaver dams and the 7th IDOCDE symposium
in lieu of transparency, approaching the 2019 IDOCDE symposium
Tracing Forwards –––––– the question of (human) nature
New Year, New Symposium, New Story
Tradition, Evolution and Diversity – Share Your Legacy
updates, updates, updates
... how many hours in a day
The Cassiopeia score and other matters; power, pedagogy, and the imparting of knowledge
revelations, reflections, confessions; post-symposium update
Months Bleed into New Months
Martin's Alphabet
You are here – I am here
Something New
Ashes to Ashes, Water to Words
Le vierge, le vivace et le bel aujourd'hui ... [1]
a fictional season
on beauty: an unexpected debate
What I Did Not Miss This Summer
I Can Not Not Move. Can You?
IN THE SPACE OF STUDY – notes on The Legacy Project and the 2017 IDOCDE Symposium
Scores for Rest
Everlasting Words
what you give will remain yours forever
the limit of the limitless
What can dance bring to culture?
Documentation and Identity – New lives of memories...
Solo thinking does not exist
The Importance of Being [Un]Necessary
Hot Stones Notwithstanding
Documenting what is in a flux
Symposium Preparations Under Way
Moving images are often read as “the truth”...
The Technology Coordinator
Potential for Relationship, Subversion and Emergence
A quantum LEAP to REFLEX
Abundance of Exchange – no me but for you!
Teaching Form[less]?
Questioning it all?
After a few months of ephemerality…
Failing Successfully!
Her sweet boredom…
teaching dance, flying airplanes and surgery procedures
re-creation – by the writing dance teacher
Revisiting Our Reality
The End
Roll the bones!
And now?
Treasure Hunt
News from the Arsenal
Body time & Politics
Morning training opening at K3
Symposium 2013 Vienna
Time is ticking...
"If tomatoes are a fruit, isn't ketchup...
Symposium 2013: Call for proposals
Teaching at ImPulsTanz: Call for applications
idocde meeting Stolzenhagen August 13-17, 2012
More videos please!
Hello… What are you doing here?

Nancy Stark Smith

It’s been forty days since Nancy Stark Smith experienced what the rest of us can only imagine and speak of through metaphor. It’s been forty days since Nancy Stark Smith learned what the rest of us have been speculating about since time immemorial; or else, since there was the particular type of consciousness we, the Homo Sapiens, experience and engage in our daily lives; intellectual, emotional, spiritual, verbal and non-verbal “systems consciousness” [1]; or else, what the rest of us have been speculating about since the day we were born.

What was it like, dear Nancy, to experience the final transition, the antithesis to the shock that is the first breath, that traumatic softening into life? If only you could tell us.

The first time I saw a baby take its first breath–change colour, soften and tone and expand and start screaming–was the first time I experienced what felt like the true meaning of the phrase “there’s no turning back.” For the baby, once bloomed–it was obvious–couldn’t possibly fit back into the womb of its exhausted, but exhilarated mother. The baby, like all of us once were, was doomed to life now. And she was going to have to learn how to survive and how to live, incidentally, without any guarantee of success. 

That is the choice made for us by birth. And that is the experience we share yet none of us remember. This choice is antithetic to the one made for us by death, the experience we are all anticipating and that one no one has yet been able to report from. Both events an evidence of Earthly contradiction, humbling in their capacity to play with our breath, by taking it away or forcing it upon us.

What if Nancy Stark Smith imagined something of what it takes to live with this predicament of no choice–and subsequently, something of what it takes to transition from and into the Great Unknown–in the way she teased our attention away from direction and towards suggestion, or in the way she tickled our attention towards surprise and away from prediction? What if Nancy Stark Smith imagined something of what it takes to live with contradiction when she created a context for learning-listening and listening-learning, in which skill is in protecting and challenging of sensitivity until that sensitivity, in all its glory, is seen for what it truly is–not a weakness, but the most moving of strengths. Known now and thanks to you, not just to individuals but to a community!

It’s been more than forty years since Nancy Stark Smith not only started answering the question we all crave the answer to but since she suggested a way in which each one of us can start imagining, exploring, and experiencing the possible answers on our own–without having to do any of it alone.


Nancy Stark Smith.

In your gift, a responsibility, a responsible community.

Thank you. 

pavleheidler for Team IDOCDE



photo @ Ezgi Göç