WORK IN PROGRESS
Roller derby is one of the few full-contact sports available to women and probably the only full-contact sport played almost exclusively by women. It throws any notions of femininity in your face. Yet many Derby Girls are mothers (perhaps the ultimate “feminine” vocation), and the bouts are extremely family friendly. Immediately I wanted to know more about the women behind the derby personas. So I invited myself into their homes, their most private, domestic spaces, the arena that is historically and culturally seen as a woman's place.
Yes these bones shall live isn't only about derby. Rather, it explores how real women contradict and conform to traditional gender codes in performing their identities. What better way to subvert the gender stereotypes and prescriptions than to don fishnets and engage in a legitimate, full-contact sport that toys with performance, sexuality, aggression and our expectations of femininity?
I've been told that roller derby may be changing. In an effort to gain legitimacy and sustainable funding, many leagues are creating men's and junior teams. Some are losing the campy 'boutfits' and punny, subversive names. In short, the sport may lose all the parts that intrigue me most.