WGS353H5 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Masculinity, Experiential Knowledge, Hegemonic Masculinity

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17 Jan 2018
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WGS353 Lecture 2 2018-01-10
To begin…
Men are not the experts of masculinity
- Experiential knowledge and theoretical knowledge
Conceptualization…
Evers, about masculinity as style
Evers talks about changing characters of masculinity
He suggests ‘there is promise there’ (2011)
- Why? Allows us to see masculinity in different ways
- What is masculinity? No definitive way to describe it, its evolving
- By Evers describing it as a style, he’s showing masculinity in its diversity
R.W. Connell Masculinities (1993, 2005)
Connell and Messerschmidt 2005
Central problem in gender relationships is PATRIARCHY
Relationship to masculinity?
- The one of patriarchy
What is our problem?
Chicken or egg problem: which one is the problem? MASCULINITY or PATRIARCHY
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Is masculinity embedded is institutional arrangements (reflecting patriarchal relations)?
Is masculinity even a thing?
Is it a ‘stable object of knowledge’ (Connell, 2005, p. 43)?
- No
Problems with this:
- We can’t generalize about masculinity
- It isn’t only found in men
Connell, 2005
So, masculinity is not really a thing we can study
- But gender and gender relations ARE
- And masculinity affects these
Institutional masculinity
- Connell argues that institutions are substantively and metaphorically masculine
Patterns of masculinity
In trying to identify masculinity in action…
- The multiple masculinities of the current Western gender order
1) Hegemony
Hegemony is “the cultural dynamic by which a group claims and sustains a
leading position in social like” (Connell, 2005, p. 77).
About both the claim and the sustaining of it
The successful claim to authority supports it
Historically, geographically mobile
We make people perform masculinity in a way that perpetuates patriarchy
2) Subordination
Subordinate masculinity refers to the social and cultural inferiority of particular
groups and kinds of men
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