November 8: (Fe)Male Bodies and Masculinities.docx

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Women and Gender Studies
Karen Ruffle

Wgs lecture notes – creative assignment week Disability - Politics of invisibility – connects to it – overlooked, many ttc stations are not accessible to people with disabilities.... - -disability studies: identity-based intersections with Queer studies, women’s studies, gender studies – emerging field - Rosemarie Garland-Thomson: disability studies reinvents the wheel - - roots in feminist theory, WGS Disability and feminism  Intersecting issues: - Reproductive technologies - Difference - Ethics of care  Ability/disability system (another system of privilege/oppression) Feminist disability theory  Garland-thomsen: need to add disability as a category of analysis in feminist theory  Disability theory adds to FT: lived body experiences, politics of appearance, Medicalization, the “neutral normal”  “unmasking and reimagining disability” - Sedgwick’s “universalizing view” - Spectrum issue Ability/disability studies  Is being a female a disability?  4 aspects: 1. System for understanding/disciplining body diffs 2. Relationship between bodies and environments – not all bodys are the same in various environments 3. Practice that marks difference dis/abled 4. Way of describing urself Masculinity  Refers to male bodies  NOT determined by male biology (having a penis)  Culturally constructed  Masculinity defined in relation to femininity - opposite of vs. Like/similar to Imagining masculinity What qualities/traits/characteristics do you consider masculine? “Troubling” Bodies  Masculinity does not inhere to male body  Otherwise, all acts performed would be masculine  Can women have masculine qualities  Can men have feminine qualities?  Does it change who they are? Michael Kimmel  Prominent scholar on gender and masculinity  Argues masculinity exaggerates difference (race, class, sexuality)  Fear of other men: homophobia and hegemonic masculinity - Use of slurs, “gay” and “faggot”  Gender policing  Fear and shame to be different: what are the costs? Multiple masculinities  Raewynn Connell, Australian sociologist/scholar of masculine studies  “masculinities are configurations of practice within gender relations, a structure that includes large-scale institutions and economic relations as well as face-to-face relations and sexuality. Masculinity is institutionalized in this structure, as well as being an aspect of individual character and personality.” (Connell 2000: 29) Hegemonic masculinity  Role of education and SES in teaching masculinity  Critiques that Connell’s theory is essentialist  Dominant form of masculinity in Western society  White, het
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