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  • Should Gourd Dance be a male-only dance?

    It was requested that we should have a new poll regarding this question, which I think is a better way to put it...
    39
    Yes
    76.92%
    30
    No
    7.69%
    3
    I don't have anything to do with Gourd Dance, but I think females should be able to dance.
    2.56%
    1
    I don't have anything to do with Gourd Dance, but I think only males should dance.
    10.26%
    4
    I don't know.
    2.56%
    1
    ᎠᏂᎩᏚᏩᎩ - Anigiduwagi
    Till I Die!

  • #2
    Originally posted by Josiah View Post
    It was requested that we should have a new poll regarding this question, which I think is a better way to put it...
    Thank you, Josiah.

    Our Gourd Dance is a male dance.

    Many folks were taught that our Gourd Dance was a "Veteran's Dance", and that is not the purpose of our dance.

    Our dance pre-dates the term, 'veteran'.

    The Gourd Dance is a male dance.

    In much the same way as if I were to say, "The Boy Scouts is an organization for boys."

    I don't think the Girl Scouts begrudge not being Boys.

    There are female societies and male societies in our tribe that help and support eachother.
    Scott Zotigh
    Kiowa Black Leggings
    Kiowa Gourd Clan
    Kiowa Tiah Piah
    Kiowa Marine Veterans
    American Indian Veterans

    Comment


    • #3
      It's kind of weird to be asking "Should Gourd Dance be a male only dance?" Everything that I've been taught, (dogpile on hobbs here if you must), says that Gourd Dance *IS* a male only dance. It traditionally HAS BEEN and today it is MOST COMMONLY done that way (I am purposefully avoiding the word 'always').

      The question seems to be asking should Gourd Dance be changed to allow for women to dance? I guess my response to that is another question, "is it still Gourd Dance then?" It seems that overall the question should be left to the Kiowa Gourd Clan and/or Kiowa Tiah-pah Society to answer.

      Through the years I've seen women take on the role of fancy dancers, hoop dancers, powwow singers (up north), MCs, and other roles often traditionally reserved for men in the past. Zotigh, the drum group, has a really keen sounding women's veteran's song out there; the first that I had heard. I guess what I'm getting around to is that the dominant culture's ideas of gender equality are making inroads into traditional ways. But does that or should that mean that everything must change? I think not.

      Some might say, man you're a hobbs, what right do you have to even comment? Well, as a hobbs, let me say that my goal is to NOT cause change. I enjoy participating in powwows and Gourd Dance to the extent that I do. I don't want to purposefully change it or hurt it. I'm a sponge, I learn as much as I can and I do the best that I can with what I know. I have a lot to learn; but I want to do things right. If asked I will give my opinion or tell of my experiences. I question those hobbs who are authorities and always trying to tell everyone how it should be done; whether asked or not. What are their motiviations? What's in it for them? Who put them in charge? I mention the above, because I view those who are looking to change traditional dances such as the Gourd Dance or the Hethuska (or any of it's other tribal names). I'm not sure who's suggesting these changes be it hobbs, new agers, or bonafides. But I must ask, What are your motivations? What's in it for you? Who put you in charge?
      "It doesn't really matter, they don't know any better anyway."

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by hobbs49 View Post
        It's kind of weird to be asking "Should Gourd Dance be a male only dance?" Everything that I've been taught, (dogpile on hobbs here if you must), says that Gourd Dance *IS* a male only dance. It traditionally HAS BEEN and today it is MOST COMMONLY done that way (I am purposefully avoiding the word 'always').

        The question seems to be asking should Gourd Dance be changed to allow for women to dance? I guess my response to that is another question, "is it still Gourd Dance then?" It seems that overall the question should be left to the Kiowa Gourd Clan and/or Kiowa Tiah-pah Society to answer.

        Through the years I've seen women take on the role of fancy dancers, hoop dancers, powwow singers (up north), MCs, and other roles often traditionally reserved for men in the past. Zotigh, the drum group, has a really keen sounding women's veteran's song out there; the first that I had heard. I guess what I'm getting around to is that the dominant culture's ideas of gender equality are making inroads into traditional ways. But does that or should that mean that everything must change? I think not.

        Some might say, man you're a hobbs, what right do you have to even comment? Well, as a hobbs, let me say that my goal is to NOT cause change. I enjoy participating in powwows and Gourd Dance to the extent that I do. I don't want to purposefully change it or hurt it. I'm a sponge, I learn as much as I can and I do the best that I can with what I know. I have a lot to learn; but I want to do things right. If asked I will give my opinion or tell of my experiences. I question those hobbs who are authorities and always trying to tell everyone how it should be done; whether asked or not. What are their motivations? What's in it for them? Who put them in charge? I mention the above, because I view those who are looking to change traditional dances such as the Gourd Dance or the Hethuska (or any of it's other tribal names). I'm not sure who's suggesting these changes be it hobbs, new agers, or bonafides. But I must ask, What are your motivations? What's in it for you? Who put you in charge?
        The main reason for the new thread is the confusion with the Gourd Dance being perceived as a "Veteran's Dance" in that context, Women Veteran's who had served honorably seemed to be excluded...

        So....


        Since the Gourd Dance is NOT a veteran's Dance then the Question:
        "Should the Gourd Dance be a Male-only Dance"; is asked within the correct context.


        I say yes.
        Last edited by Josiah; 11-25-2008, 10:28 AM.
        ᎠᏂᎩᏚᏩᎩ - Anigiduwagi
        Till I Die!

        Comment


        • #5
          It is a dance that has a role for men and women. Those roles are clearly defined.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by kiyaanii mom View Post
            It is a dance that has a role for men and women. Those roles are clearly defined.
            And, you are defined as OUTSTANDING :)

            Your post made me happy to read.

            Thank you.
            Scott Zotigh
            Kiowa Black Leggings
            Kiowa Gourd Clan
            Kiowa Tiah Piah
            Kiowa Marine Veterans
            American Indian Veterans

            Comment


            • #7
              to me this is like asking, "should fish swim?", or "should birds fly?". It is what it is, and if it's something that changed, then I might look into dancing fancy shawl or jingle. I think Scott's anaolgy of girl/boy scouts is on cue. I really don't see this open to debate.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by hobbs49 View Post
                The question seems to be asking should Gourd Dance be changed to allow for women to dance
                Unfortunately, the answer to this question is pretty meaningless.

                Originally posted by hobbs49 View Post
                I guess my response to that is another question, "is it still Gourd Dance then?"
                Begging the question is one answer, but that grows reflexive and smacks of, "I'll take my ball and go home." It's far too late for that.

                Originally posted by hobbs49 View Post
                It seems that overall the question should be left to the Kiowa Gourd Clan and/or Kiowa Tiah-pah Society to answer
                Except, of course, they aren't who will get to answer this question. (In fact, they've already lost control of how the dance is interpreted.)

                It will only get worse. At some (relatively soon) point, currently unheard of things will appear with regularity. There's really no getting around that.

                Getting back to the premise, "should," has nothing to do with it. It just is.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I have to agree with K-mom here.

                  I thought about posting in the other thread, I had been watching it, but didn't post.

                  I am not Kiowa, but I am a woman and about 4 years ago I had the great honor of going to OK with a very good friend of mine who is Kiowa and her father is in a Gourd Dance Society.

                  While there I was truely honored to not only attend one of the Society Dances, but to also have been invited to participate (in the womens fashion) at an Honor dance.

                  Women do have their place (roll) if you will in this dance and why should we not embrace it and honor it as it has been done for generations. Why should we try to change things? There really is no reason, that I can think of.

                  Now, here's something too. A good friend of mine was talking to a man once who was not Native. The man made some comment (in front of me) about how women used to walk behind the men and he said some other stuff. Well my friend popped off and said "Now, hold on there. Many are getting confused. If you think about it: the men are the Warriors and the women are the life givers who keep our people going strong. They also protect and care for the children which is our future. So the Men (Warriors) would go first to protect the women (and children) in case of danger not to degrade or put down a woman in anyway, but to protect her and the future of our people." I liked it when he did that.

                  I was lucky enough to have been invited and the man shared some with me and it was great. But as said before: Women do have their role and I appreciate the roles and wouldn't want to change that at all.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Well said! timmy tiger !!!
                    Listen to my heart, not just my mouth! The most powerfull thing we can do is,,,share,,, if we don't it dies with us.

                    It is the year of the bear, I am sharpening my claws and will no longer tollerate harrassment.

                    Born in Winnipeg raised in the Pikwakanagan, Deutschland was never home! Army brat that had no choice in a parents duties to home and country. I Too Serve our flag and work for the uniform.
                    Stand behind our troops or stand IN FRONT of them.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by timmy tiger View Post
                      Why should we try to change things?
                      I don't think we'll try to change things, I just believe it inevitable.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Zeke View Post
                        I don't think we'll try to change things, I just believe it inevitable.

                        Well, I had to think about how to answer this a little bit so as not to come off in the wrong way.

                        Although there is always some form of "Evolution" (for lack of a better word right now) in almost all parts of life, the idea that a Warrior's society has to or would be expected to evolve to include women as Warriors of the society just doesn't really sound right to me. As my Uncle has said and explained to me many many times: there is so much more to being a Warrior then just being a Vet (and he is a Vietnam Vet and says that). There are women vets and I honor them for that, but that is very different then being in a Warrior Society.

                        Honestly here, and don't everyone freak out at once on me, but as a woman as I was reading/skimming the last thread about this the thing that kept jumping into my mind was: Women's Lib gone crazy.LOL I'm sorry guys, but it's the truth here. It started out all for a good reason and with good intentions and then went totally off the deep end--in my opinion here.

                        Again, women do have their place in the Gourd Dance and it's an honorable place too, not degrading or less then anyone or anything. So why should it be inevitable that it has to or is expected to change? I don't see it that way. I more see it as some might want to change it and will do whatever they can to do just that, in some cases here. And I still feel that it is and should be a Male dance.
                        Last edited by timmy tiger; 12-20-2008, 07:08 AM. Reason: added something.LOL

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Many of us don't have anything to do with Jingle Dress dance, so we don't hang around on "Jingle Dress' forum posting for or against that dance that belongs to the Objiwe folks.

                          But, many folks that have nothing to do with Jingle Dress post and post about that dance on their forum, whether it belongs to them or not.

                          Likewise, we don't tend to think about the folks that have nothing to do with our Gourd Dance hanging around this forum posting about our dance without knowing very much about our dance.

                          The future of our dance belongs to us, not them.

                          The legacy we pass to our children is what you and I pass to our children, and that is untouchable.

                          You and I were gifted the dance. We didn't just take it for our own. The medicine we receive from our dance is passed along to us and ours from the Red Wolf and in the right way.

                          We take pride in dancing together.

                          I think that is what frustrates some folks.
                          Scott Zotigh
                          Kiowa Black Leggings
                          Kiowa Gourd Clan
                          Kiowa Tiah Piah
                          Kiowa Marine Veterans
                          American Indian Veterans

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I do think you are right especially about the frustration part.

                            I've seen and heard alot of people to say "Oh it looks cool, so I want to do it." And that is not what any of these dances are about. Many just see parts or a little of it. To be a part of it and there is a totally different thing altogether.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Zotigh View Post
                              The legacy we pass to our children is what you and I pass to our children, and that is untouchable.
                              While quaint and romantic, that is as false a statement as has ever been uttered, by anyone, anywhere.

                              Good, bad, right, wrong or indifferent, society has significantly more impact than any individual is ever going to be able to produce, in terms of behavior.

                              To believe otherwise is to pass on the legacy of Col. William Travis who, though noble, died in the face of an unyielding history whilst many other options were available. In sum, it paints a picture of a desperate need to get over oneself.

                              Comment

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