The legacy of the Renaissance and baroque era is a complex one. The period witnessed a variety of dancing practices and of cultural responses to them. A moral perspective prevailed and proved influential also within the legal and medical discourses. Each author's social milieu and ideological orientation influenced them to portray dance either as a disorderly behaviour which equated human beings to beasts, or as a noble and edifying practice that inserted them within a political and cosmic order. Similar ambiguity characterized the consideration of dance from the perspectives of health and law. However, its beneficial role as a form of physical exercise was rarely challenged, and any radical attempt to simply ban dancing from the civilized world was destined to fail.
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