Expressing masculinity in tango

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Tango is an opportunity to grow. It’s also an opportunity to experiment with how we express ourselves, including what is known rather stiffly as “gender performance”.

Most men these days have been working to be more open and sensitive. This is an important part of getting away from sexism. Thank you for working on it!

Abandoning the arbitrary and cruel habits of a sexist society was an urgent task. Now that we’ve gotten better at being egalitarian in our relations in the workplace, the family, and other important social institutions we are faced with how we want to live and express our gender. How do we want to use it in our personal style, in our romantic relations, in our gestures and embodiment of our personalities?

While these possibilities are a continuum along which every point is inhabited and even the borders can now be crossed, many of us still feel attracted to femininity and masculinity as they are persistently celebrated in the surrounding culture. Although it’s now biologically, socially, and legally possible to live gender any way you want, we have less power to personally determine how we perceive the intersection of gender and romance.

Men still feel the need to be emotionally resilient and in control. (Even men who used to be women seem to feel this imperative.)

Women still want to receive desire and care. (Even though most well know that we’re far more capable of organizing care than most men we’ve met.)

There’s no right and wrong to any of this. It would be helpful to have more diverse images and narratives in pop culture media, but on a personal level, we each need to work out what feels liberated and whole and satisfying.

Some men feel they’ve been bullied into wimpiness. They are trying, rightly, to be anti-sexist and respectful of women, but the culture around them still insists that men should be authoritative and elegant. They’ve lost their sense of successful masculinity. And we all want to be successful at the various tasks this world puts before us, even when they seem contradictory.

Tango is a chance to embody masculinity in a satisfying way, and in a way that fulfils women’s desire for certain romantic gender relations. We don’t want you to boss us around, but we do want to be admired and desired, to feel your masculine attention.


Dancing tango, you are welcome to express your strength, control, and desire with the cabeceo, an authoritative mark, and skilled tenderness.

You may find that these expressions on the dance floor help you find new expressions in all of your life, especially your romantic relations with women.

Introduction

FAQ

Getting Started

Are you ready to start dancing Argentine Tango?

Of course there are courses in almost every town where you can meet other beginners. In case you are a bit shy and you’d like to start training and learning first at home, we have a beginner’s package. It includes 10 practice sessions, a book to get you excited (print or e-book), and a home page here at TangoForge with all of our resources for new dancers as well as a forum to ask questions. The practice courses are also useful in case you get very busy or need to travel for work and can’t make it to class. They’ll give you a way to continue improving steadily with or without group class.

TangoForge

Begin Tango Package

Books

Power is the courage, confidence, and competence to make things happen. I want to create in a way that’s incomparable and define my own compensation package. You too?

Syntax of Power is a raw, potent, and spare revelation of how I got to where I am and how I take on the struggle every day.

This book is not about tango, it’s about everything else.

It’s about stepping into the darkness of change, learning how to take care of yourself, and making things happen.

Dyv stands for Duro y Vio. We were inspired by a 2007 conference at Harvard University about tango as a transnational culture. Also we wanted to create something that would help people to imagine a queerer tango. We forbid ourselves to use the word ‘passion’ and instead tried to articulate the experience more precisely.

Argentine Tango is more than an elaborate and difficult dance, it is an international culture of intimacy, desire, and dignity. No mere romance or memoir, the intricately woven stories evoke tango’s true mysteries … the elation, the frustration, the compulsion…

We published the book in 2009. Dancers asked “how did you know what I was feeling?”

Silences in history. Silences by code. Silences of fear. You already know that Tango’s silences can be sublime and they can be devastating.

What I do in my blog is use myself as a lens – sometimes a microscope, sometimes a telescope. I try to be as honest with myself and you as words concede. Then I try to find a deeper meaning and imagine a pathway for us.

A blog post can be a fragment, a wisp of inspiration, an outline for thinking. A book must complete and reconcile it all. Now I drag the social scientist to the scene to enumerate the facts of the case, the mystery which brought both stardom and tragedy to my life.

We didn’t start online education in March of 2020. We started in 2014. Learn more about our Digital School