Contraculture: Bird Names and the Degendering of Contra Dance

  title={Contraculture: Bird Names and the Degendering of Contra Dance},
  author={Andrew James Snyder},
  journal={Yearbook for Traditional Music},
  pages={187 - 215}
  • A. Snyder
  • Published 1 November 2019
  • Political Science
  • Yearbook for Traditional Music
At Oakland’s Circle Left contra dance, I notice my hands fumbling as I take “hands four” with my partner and our neighbour couple to form one of many foursomes in a long line of contra dancers. My partner and I place our hands facing palm up expecting to find a hand to hold facing palm down. In “traditional” contra, it is the person in the “lady” role who places their hand palm down on the hand of the person in the “gent” role. But this time it is I, a cisgendered male,1 who am in the wrong… 


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