- Copyright Page
- Introduction: Competition Culture: Winning and Losing at Dance
- Taking the Cake: Black Dance, Competition, and Value
- You’ve Got to Sell It!: Performing on the Dance Competition Stage
- Competitive Capers: Gender, Gentility, and Dancing in Early Modern England
- Endangered Strangers: Tracking Competition in US Federal Dance Funding
- Marking Your Territory: The Struggle to Work in Flamenco
- Reappropriating Choreographies of Authenticity in Mexico: Competitions and the Dance of the Old Men
- Above and Beyond the Battle: Virtuosity and Collectivity within Televised Street Dance Crew Competitions
- Shifting Dynamics: <i>Sean Nós</i> Dancing, Vernacular Expression, and the Competitive Arena of the <i>Oireachtas</i>
- Visible Rhythms: Competition in English Tap Practice
- The International Dancehall Queen Competition: A Discursive Space for Competing Images of Femininity
- Congratulations, We Wish You Success: Competition and Community Participation in Romanian Dance Festivals
- Non-Competitive Body States: Corporeal Freedom and Innovation in Contemporary Dance
- Reclaiming Competitive Tango: The Rise of Argentina’s <i>Campeonato Mundial</i>
- Dance-Off, or a Battle for the Future: Dance Reality Shows in India
- Miss Exotic World: Judging the Neo-Burlesque Movement
- Rapper Dance Adjudication: Aesthetics, Discourse, and Decision-Making
- Dismantling the Genre: Reality Dance Competitions and Layers of Affective Intensification
- Why Are Breaking Battles Judged?: The Rise of International Competitions
- Not Another Don Quixote!: Negotiating China’s Position on the International Ballet Stage
- Dancing with the Asian American Stars: Margaret Cho and the Failure to Win
- Loss of Face: Intimidation, Derision, and Failure in the Hip-Hop Battle
- Making Play Work: Competition, Spectacle, and Intersubjectivity in Hybrid Martial Arts
- You Can’t Outdo Black People: <i>Soul Train</i>, Queer Witnessing, and Pleasurable Competition
- Freedom to Compete: Neoliberal Contradictions in Gaga Intensives
- “We’ll Rumble ’em Right”: Aggression and Play in the Dance-Offs of <i>West Side Story</i>
- Dancing like a Man: Competition and Gender in the New Orleans Second Line
- Man and Money Ready: Challenge Dancing in Antebellum America
- Afterword: Who Is Competing?
Abstract and Keywords
Neo-burlesque has been praised by dance scholarship as a body positive, feminist, safe space that has celebrated difference and argued for a broader spectrum of beauty, gender representation, and orientation. Since the inception of the movement, performers have made the pilgrimage to the Burlesque Hall of Fame pageant, and now claim titles such as Best Troupe, the King of Boylesque, and Miss Exotic World. Utilizing an ethnographic methodology, by way of participant observation and interview data, this chapter examines the author’s experience of serving as a judge at this pageant. It analyzes performers’ efforts to “authentically” recreate this mid-twentieth-century form of exotic dance and argues that such attempts can perpetuate historic prejudices with regard to body size, sexual orientation, and race. Additionally, it suggests that the process of competition often normalizes and regulates this inclusive performance practice, and is fundamentally at odds with the supposed philosophies of the neo-burlesque community.
Kaitlyn Regehr (PhD) is an ethnographer and documentarian. Her work has appeared internationally in academic and popular print outlets, including Variety Magazine and the Los Angeles Times. In addition to serving as a topic specialist for BBC World, Regehr pg xxhas created documentary content for networks such as Super Channel (CA), SWR (DE), and ARTE (FR).
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