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SOCB22H3 (48)
Lecture 3

Week 3

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Ping- Chun Hsiung

Oct12(wk 5) SG Readings 3 Hegemonic Masculinity: Rethinking the Concept- Robert Conel and James W. Messerschmidt The concept of hegemonic masculinity does not equate to a model of social reproduction; we need to recognize social struggles in which subordinated masculinities influence dominant forms Origin, Formation, and Application ORIGIN The concept of hegemonic masculinity was first proposed in reports from a field study of social inequality in Australian high schools; in a related conceptual discussion of the making of masculinities and the experience of mens bodies; and in a debate over the role of men in Australian labour politics Closely related issues were feminist theories of patriarchy and the related debates over the role of men in transforming patriarchy Women of colour criticised the race bias that occurs when power is solely conceptualized in terms of sex difference, thus laying the groundwork for questioning any universalizing claim about the category of men Concept was also influenced by Freud FORMULATION Hegemonic masculinity was understood as the pattern of practice that allowed mens dominance over women to continue Was distinguished from other masculinities; was not assumed to be normal in the statistical sense; only a minority of men enact it It was normative; all other men position themselves in relation to it Legitimated the global subordination of women to men Men who received benefits of patriarchy without enacting a strong version of masculine dominance could be regarded as showing a complicit masculinity -it was in relation to this group and to compliance among heterosexual women, that the concept of hegemony was most powerful Hegemony did not mean violence, though could be supported by force; it meant ascendency achieved through culture, institutions, and persuasion Hegemonic masculinities came into existence in specific circumstances and were open to historical change There could be a struggle for hegemony, and older forms of masculinity might be displaced by new ones APPLICATION The concept of hegemonic masculinity was used in education studies to understand the dynamics of classroom life, including patterns of resistance and bullying among boys Also had influence in criminology Was also employed in media representations of men Was also used to understand mens health practices, such as playing hurt and risk- taking sexual behaviours The concepts of hegemonic and subordinated masculinities helped in understanding not only mens exposure to risk but also mens difficulties in responding to disability and injury The concept of hegemonic masculinity also proved significant in organization studies, as the gendered character of bureaucracies and workplaces was increasingly recognized Hegemonic masculinity served as a framework for much of the developing research effort on men and masculinity, replacing sex-role theory and categorical models of patriarchy Gender orders construct multiple masculinities Diversity of masculinities is also found in particular institutions
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