An expat Californian building a new life via the tango in Buenos Aires since 2003, including information on learning the tango and where to dance it in Buenos Aires.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Thanks for the Memoirs!

Just as my own memoir, The Church of Tango, is readying itself for publication, there is yet another woman's tango memoir soon to be published in the UK. I guess that proves there is an audience out there. Where are the tango memoirs written by men? There are a couple of excellent books by men, Long After Midnight at the Nino Bien, kind of a non-fiction novelized travelogue by yanqui Brian Winter, and Here At the End of the World We Learn to Dance, a well-written novel by kiwi Lloyd Jones, a prize-winning author.


Now there is Twelve Minutes of Love by Kapka Kassabova, a Bulgarian who currently lives in Scotland, which is being published this month by Portobello Books. Here is the artistic trailer for the book, featuring oil paintings by animation artist Em Cooper, music by Piazzolla, and stage tango moves.
 Do I have a dirty mind or are there ink blot references to a woman's anatomy?


 

I understand why there are so many tango blogs and memoirs, as people are trying to explain to themselves and others the profundity and emotional content of this dance that is inexplicable in words. Men write tango blogs, but as yet no tango memoir. I wish I were a psychologist so I could speculate as to why. And why women feel compelled to share their emotional tango journeys with others.


You can listen to a BBC interview with Kapka, as well as our own Sally Blake, author of Happy Tango: Sallycat's Guide to Dancing in Buenos Aires.

And now I'd better get to work on my video trailer for The Church of Tango! Any ideas for me out there?


3 comments:

Dieudonne said...

"I understand why there are so many tango blogs and memoirs, as people are trying to explain to themselves and others the profundity and emotional content of this dance that is inexplicable in words. Men write tango blogs, but as yet no tango memoir. I wish I were a psychologist so I could speculate as to why. And why women feel compelled to share their emotional tango journeys with others. "

I simply think that most of us men are "cultured" in a way that does not make the value of emotional expression obvious to us. Being a man in most cultures means being stoic/self contained, the silent type, and so on...(although this is changing), which I think is counterproductive to our own human development/self expression, and stands in the way of joy and the soul nurturing aspect of relating in a romantic way.
We are learning, and happily so, in the arms of Tango and the women who, fortunately for us, share our passion.

tangocherie said...

Thank you, DD, for your heartfelt comment.

Being a man in Latin cultures means being passionate, emotional, demonstrative--and that's why the tango came out of Argentina and not England (for example).

I believe that's why many men in foreign cultures, especially Anglo-Saxon cultures, are so drawn to the tango--it's a part of life that they've denied themselves.

The tango embrace with all of its feelings is healing and healthy for everyone.

Chris said...

Cherie, you wondered why when it comes to tango, women so outnumber men as memoir authors. Likewise they substantially outnumber men as bloggers, show performers, organisers, dance teachers... and dance class takers (witness the number of women-only v. men-only classes).

I think sadly all come from the fact that women greatly outnumber men at milongas, and hence womankind finding insufficient satisfaction in dancing. It is sad mankind cannot do more to remedy this.

How things have changed ... in just 100 years!

Well done you for catching a good one :) . Your satisfaction and fulfilment really show in your writing - a contrast to the frustration and bitterness evident between the lines of self-adulation and self-promotion of many women's tango blogs. I look forward to reading your memoir.