B1529. ISADORA DUNCAN. My Life [Autobiography]. New York, Boni & Liveright, 1927. 359pp. Photos.
“Isadora Duncan was a dancer, considered by many to be the creator of modern dance. Born in the United States, she lived in Western Europe and the Soviet Union from the age of 22 until her death at age 50. In the United States she was popular only in New York, and only later in her life. She performed to acclaim throughout Europe.
Duncan’s philosophy of dance moved away from rigid ballet technique and towards what she perceived as natural movement. Duncan took inspiration from ancient Greece and combined it with an American love of freedom. This is exemplified in her revolutionary costume of a white Grecian tunic and bare feet. Inspired by Grecian forms, her tunics also allowed a freedom of movement which corseted ballet costumes and pointe shoes did not. Costumes were not the only inspiration Duncan took from Greece. She was very inspired by ancient Greek art and utilized some of those forms in her movement.
Duncan's fondness for flowing scarves was the cause of her death in an automobile accident in Nice, France when she was passenger in an Amilcar, and her silk scarf, draped around her neck, became entangled around the open-spoked wheels and rear axle, breaking her neck. The accident gave rise to Gertrude Stein's mordant remark that ‘affectations can be dangerous’."
- Zillah D. Akron