What’s up with gender in figure skating? Why do skaters compete officially as “Men” or “Ladies”? Why do people question whether figure skating is really a sport, or assume that all the female skaters are straight and all the male skaters are gay? How are race, class, and sexuality involved with gender in the practice and reputation of figure skating? This talk looks at the culture of figure skating, including performances by famous skaters such as Johnny Weir, Michelle Kwan, and Oregon’s own Tonya Harding, and considers the workings of gender in figure skating from both inside and outside the sport. The speaker uses PowerPoint and video images to illustrate this talk.
Presenter Profile: Erica Rand, Whitehouse Professor of Art and Visual Culture and of Women and Gender Studies at Bates College
Erica Rand is the Whitehouse Professor of Art and Visual Culture and of Women and Gender Studies at Bates College (Maine). In the fall of 2014, she taught a course on Queer and Trans Sports studies at the University of Oregon. Her most recent book is Red Nails, Black Skates: Gender Cash, and Pleasure On and Off the Ice (2012), a book of short essays grounded in her own participant-observation research in adult figure skating.