Download PDF by Henry Spiller: Erotic Triangles: Sundanese Dance and Masculinity in West
By Henry Spiller
In West Java, Indonesia, all it takes is a woman’s voice and a drum beat to make a guy wake up and dance. each day, males there—be they scholars, pedicab drivers, civil servants, or businessmen—breach usual criteria of decorum and succumb to the rhythm at village ceremonies, weddings, political rallies, and nightclubs. The tune the lads dance to varies from conventional gong ensembles to the modern pop referred to as dangdut, yet they constantly dance with nice enthusiasm. In Erotic Triangles, Henry Spiller attracts on a long time of ethnographic learn to discover the explanations at the back of this phenomenon, arguing that Sundanese males use dance to discover and enact contradictions of their gender identities.
Framing the 3 the most important components of Sundanese dance—the girl entertainer, the drumming, and men’s experience of freedom—as a triangle, Spiller connects them to quite a number different theoretical views, drawing on thinkers from Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick, Lévi-Strauss, and Freud to Euclid. via granting males permission to actually practice their masculinity, Spiller eventually concludes, dance presents a vital area for either reinforcing and resisting orthodox gender ideologies.
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In West Java, Indonesia, all it takes is a woman’s voice and a drum beat to make a guy wake up and dance. on a daily basis, males there—be they scholars, pedicab drivers, civil servants, or businessmen—breach usual criteria of decorum and succumb to the rhythm at village ceremonies, weddings, political rallies, and nightclubs.
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Additional info for Erotic Triangles: Sundanese Dance and Masculinity in West Java (Chicago Studies in Ethnomusicology)
20). Barker establishes that for Sundanese men, for example, tattoos signal that their wearer is a powerful person without any need to demonstrate it. Tattoos are, in effect, a source as well as a symbol of power (Barker 1999:274). To appear powerful is to be powerful; to act manly is to be manly. Keeler points out that Javanese 31 Chapter One demonstrate how alus they are through their bodily comportment: “Alus movement should be effortless, apparently (and in larger towns, often) unthinkingly elegant, with no sudden, jerky motion to interrupt the impression of calm” (Keeler 1975:89).
Discourses of Masculinity: Terms for Male Dancers Benedict Anderson stresses that the successful reconciliation of opposites is a sign of power (Anderson 1972:14–15). I argue that performing—onstage—the contradictions in which Sundanese masculinities are embroiled is nothing less than a demonstration of power. The plauÂ� sibleÂ€deniability provided by the context of a dance event enables participants to experience the contradictions of Sundanese masculinities by going through the motions of them onstage.
Such a delicate balance depends on many situational factors and individual characteristics. It would be impossible to set in stone one particular set of qualities and behaviors that define an ideal man. Perhaps such double standards are the inevitable consequence of a society’s investing the basic emotion of shame with two demonstrably parallel, but often contradictory, functions, those of rivalry and conformity. It is up to each individual man to craft a masculine identity that makes sense for him within this contradictory territory.
Erotic Triangles: Sundanese Dance and Masculinity in West Java (Chicago Studies in Ethnomusicology) by Henry Spiller