Improve our Terminology?

e.ferguson

Message 61221 · 20 Jul 2011 22:44:53 · Fixed-width font · Whole thread

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On 19 Jul 2011 at 20:54, Hamish Dewar wrote (in part):

> <..> The problem with SCD terminology is that it is often
> non-intuitive even counter-intuitive, and too often ambiguous.
> If we are going to put the the world to rights regarding SCD
> terminology <..> what would we propose instead? It's no good
> considering one term in isolation. We have to consider how each
> term is differentiated from other terms.

As writing cribs is part of my "SCD hobby", terminology is much in my
mind (or should I say it has got on my brain?). There are three
ambiguities which I come across regularly

1. The notion of "corner".
This can mean "corner position" or "corner person". In olden days
when few dances were complicated, that was not a problem, but at
present how can a dancer who is told to "turn first corner (meaning
person) know where that corner happens to be (perhaps in fourth
corner (position).)

We should use two different words for these notions. Here are a few
suggestions:

corner position Apex or point or angle
corner person co-partner

or perhaps we could invent entirely new words for both concepts, like
"co" (plural: "coes") for corner person.

I expect we should replace both usages with new words, as the
ambiguous usage is so deeply ingrained (and present in dance
descriptions) that replacing one meaning by a new word still does not
release "corner" for the other meaning exclusively.

2. The naming of corners.
The traditional names are First, Second, Partner's First, Partners
second. This can become very convoluted in dance descriptions and
even more so in cribs.

SUGGESTION: let us officially recognize "First, Second, Third and
Fourth.corners", and preferably use these names as our first choice.

3. "Turn".
Mostly used for "turn another dancer", but also for "turn single"
(i.e. face another way on your own, either turning on the spot, or
dancing a small loop.

Can we give "turn single" a new compact name? In my cribs I use
"veer", "pivot", "swivel" and "face", and (sometimes) "turn". Any
better ideas?

Apart from these ambiguities, there are a few movements which occur
frequently, but lack a name. For example;

4. "Half turn partner and face partner close by, and cast out to the
sideline". Sometimes called "Argyll turn", but we know it is better
not to name a formation by a dance.

I would welcome an exchange of views on Strathspey. If we come to
agreement on any item here, that could be made into a proposal to the
RSCDS to standardize the new name in the next revision to the Manual.

Happy dancing,

Eric

--
Eric T. Ferguson,
van Reenenweg 3, 3702 SB ZEIST Netherlands
tel: +31 30-2673638

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