Welcome to the Department of Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies

  • Portrait
  • Associate Professor and Director of the MFA Dance Prog.
  • Department: Mason Gross School of the Arts
  • Email: jfriedman@mgsa.rutgers.edu
  • Tel: : 848-932-1384
  • Office: Mortensen Hall, Rm 109E



Ph.D., Dance History and Theory, University of California-Riverside

CLMA, Certification in Laban/Bartenieff Studies, Integrated Movement Systems, University of Utah

B.Arch., University of Oregon

Research Interests

Dance studies, philosophies of embodiment, oral history theory, method and practice, site-specific performance, embodiment and disability studies.

Biographical Notes

Jeff Friedman is Associate Professor in the Department of Dance, Mason Gross School of the Arts, and Graduate Faculty in the Department of Women and Gender Studies at Rutgers University. His articles and book chapters on oral history and performance have appeared in both dance studies and oral history publications, including Historia, Antropologia, y Fuentes Orales (Barcelona); Oral History (U.K. and New Zealand); Korea Dance Research Journal; and in edited anthologies in Germany and the U.S. including, most recently, Bodies of Evidence: The Practice of Queer Oral History (Oxford UP).

Friedman received his Ph.D. from the University of California, Riverside from the Dance History and Theory Program, the first of its kind in the world. While at Riverside, Dr. Friedman also became certified in Laban/Barteneiff Movement Studies at the University of Utah, through the Integrated Movement Studies Program. His undergraduate studies in architectural design began at Cornell University and were completed at the University of Oregon. He was a 2010 Fulbright Senior Research and Teaching Fellow at the Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst (Performing Arts University) in Frankfurt and has lectured and taught throughout Germany, Poland, the U.K., Canada, the U.S., Korea and New Zealand.

From 1979-1997, Friedman was a working dancer and choreographer in the San Francisco Bay Area, touring nationally and internationally with the Oberlin Dance Collective, and nationally as LOCUS Solo Dance. His original choreography includes solo and group works, full-length multi-disciplinary performance projects, historical reconstructions, and site-specific performance works in a variety of indoor and outdoor sites. His works have been supported by the California Arts Council, the Djerassi, Fleishhacker and Zellerbach Family Foundations.

In 1988, Friedman founded Legacy, an oral history program for the Bay Area dance communities, celebrating its 25th anniversary in 2013 as the largest collection of research oral history documents in the performing arts outside of New York City’s Public Library collection at Lincoln Center. Legacy has received eight National Endowment for the Arts grants and the Isadora Duncan, James V. Mink and Forrest C. Pogue Awards for service to the dance and oral history communities. Friedman’s specialty links dance and oral history by choreographing documentary-based performance works, such as his seminal work Muscle Memory, subject of numerous lecture-performances throughout the U.S., Canada, Europe and New Zealand, where he was guest senior lecturer at the University of Auckland Dance Studies Programme. He will be Visiting Professor at the University of Sophia Antipolis, as part of the Cote d'Azur University consortium during the Spring semester of 2020.



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