Triangulating Sundanese Dance

in Erotic Triangles

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print September 2010 | ISBN: 9780226769585
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226769608 | DOI:
Triangulating Sundanese Dance

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Sundanese dance derives meaning from the relationships between three readily recognizable elements: ronggeng, drumming that animates male dancers, and a sense of freedom on the part of the dancers. These elements comprise three “sides” of an erotic triangle, each of which explores a cultural contradiction; when taken together, these model the twists and turns of Sundanese gender ideologies. This chapter applies this trigonometry to a selection of recent Sundanese performances to explore the relationship of participatory men's dance traditions to the presentational genres that reference them and examine why some of these new genres seem to be more successful at transforming Sundanese dance—and Sundanese values—than others.

Keywords: ronggeng; drumming; freedom; dancers; erotic triangle; Sundanese gender ideologies; men's dance; Sundanese dance

Chapter.  10498 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Ethnomusicology

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