Alessandra Williams, Ph.D., is a dancer and scholar who is assistant professor of dance at Rutgers University-New Brunswick and whose academic interests include dance and performance studies, Asian and African diaspora, transnational feminism, and queer of color theory. Having joined the Minneapolis-based Ananya Dance Theatre to train in the company’s Yorchhā technique in 2006, Williams has performed in Sutrajāl (2019), Shaatranga (2018), Shyamali (2017), Horidraa (2016), Roktim (2015), Moreechika (2012), Ashesh Barsha (2009), and Pipaashaa (2007). Currently, Williams is co-editor alongside Ananya Chatterjea and Hui Wilcox for their forthcoming book on transnational feminism and dance. In other publications, Williams is writing a book proposal on the choreography of David Roussève/REALITY dance company as a form of queer of color practice.
As Eugene V. Cota-Robles Fellow, Williams earned a Ph.D. and M.A. in Culture and Performance at UCLA and through the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship, finished the B.A. with honors in American Studies and Dance at Macalester College. From 2018-2019, Williams served as Inclusive Excellence Fellow in Women’s and Gender Studies and Theatre and Dance at University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, and from 2016-7, taught as Visiting Assistant Professor in the dance program of Carleton College. Originally from Minneapolis, Williams’ work as a community organizer led to receiving the 2010 Minnesota Grassroots Solutions Organizer of the Year Award.
Excerpt from “A Ritual” (2019).