Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)



First Advisor

Faidra Papavasiliou

Second Advisor

Cassandra White

Third Advisor

Emanuela Guano


Lion dance in the United States has gone through drastic changes since the 1990s. These changes have created a multicultural, pan ethnic, and diverse art form that communities from all over the nation use to connect to their heritage and identity. While many Asian Americans use this lion dance as a way to connect to their heritage, lion dance has also being transformed into part of the American culture. There are also a lot of parallels with the directions that the lion dance community and Asian American community are heading in terms of visibility. Lion dance has become a proxy of Asian American struggles in the U.S. for many of the performers. This thesis looks at how lion dance is growing and spreading in the US, how it has turned into a multicultural and pan ethnic tradition, and the subtle ways it is use politically in the U.S.