As they point out in their introduction, they questioned "the continuing relevance of such a structure [of separate chapters for individual nations]. Numerous dance networks now operate with this European conceptual and institutional framework in mind" 7. Within this structure, the individual authors are able to focus on the post-war situations in their own countries, "bringing in this historical perspective as it informs the more recent situation" 9.
Each chapter concludes with a chronological table linking significant events and personalities in each nation's dance history with major social and political dates.get link
A bibliography of works in English and in the national language also follows each chapter. Ultimately, the book's greatest value is as a research tool and as a starting point for dance scholars for further exploration of the historical roots and influences of European dance. The essays vary considerably in their style and content. Some assume familiarity on the part of the reader with the reputations of certain choreographers and dance groups.
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Almost all cite the importance of contact with such internationally famous early figures in dance as Isadora Duncan, Merce Cunningham, Rudolph van Laban, and Mary Wigman in changing the course of dance in Europe. Cross-fertilization also occurred as major artists, both European and American, took over leadership of established dance institutions and of newly formed companies in countries other than their own.
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