Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Dance, dance, dance little doctors

You learn something new every day. For instance, that in the US there is an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) sponsored competition called "Dance Your Ph.D." in which scientists do precisely that: dance their doctoral dissertations. According to an article in Stern, competitors are judged by the expressiveness of their product and its ability to bring across the project's central message.

I don't think Francis Sedgemore will be impressed by the efforts (or their heuristic value, for that matter). But see and judge for yourselves:

Here's Vince LiCata and team dancing "Resolving Pathways of Functional Coupling in Human Hemoglobin Using Quantitative Low Temperature Isoelectric Focusing of Asymmetric Mutant Hybrids"

Closet patriot that I am, I was particularly happy to see that there's a winner from Germany: Miriam Sach from the University of Düsseldorf, dancing "Cerebral activation patterns induced by inflection of regular and irregular verbs with positron emission tomography. A comparison between single subject and group analysis"

She clearly has a background in classical ballet, fruitfully spiked here with a good dose of Pina Bausch.

More videos can be found here.

I can't think of any of my colleagues who'd be willing to do something quite as compromising AND post it on YouTube. But one may dream, mayn't one?

At this point I would have liked to post a clip of Landlord Marty's dance from The Big Lebowski, but sadly none could be found in the infinite depths of the World Wide Web. So you have to imagine.


Francis Sedgemore said...

Miriam's kinetic body patterns look distinctly arthritic to me. Maybe she would be better off rolling a nice big doobie and simply talking us through her thesis. This would surely be less stressful for all concerned.

Kris McCracken said...

I'm not sure how one goes about dancing a tale of social democratic revisionism.

A lot of stuttering steps I guess...

Anonymous said...

You're right about at least one of John's colleagues in any case, Anja. Although I live in hope that one day a comparative study of vagrancy law in Britain and France will be re-interpreted as a surf music instrumental trumpet solo.