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Marcus B. Weaver-Hightower

Abstract

In this short personal appreciation of The Men and the Boys, the author admires the ethnographic and writing skills Raewyn Connell displays—the craft and artistry that animates her insightful theories. From her prose's clarity to the deftness of her interviewing, Connell models how to empirically ground foundational social theory.

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Becoming a Super-Masculine “Cool Guy”

Reflexivity, Dominant and Hegemonic Masculinities, and Sexual Violence

James W. Messerschmidt

Abstract

In this article the author builds on the arguments articulated by Raewyn Connell in her seminal work The Men and the Boys (2000) by summarizing and analyzing a case study of an adolescent boy who was identified at school as a “wimp” and who eventually engaged in sexual violence. Such subordinated boys rarely are—if at all—discussed in childhood education, sociology, and feminist literatures on violence. The synopsis reveals the interrelationship among in-school bullying, reflexivity, embodiment, and the social construction of dominant and hegemonic masculinities through the commission of adolescent sexual violence. The analysis demonstrates the continued relevance of Connell's work, and the author builds on and expands on Connell's formulation through, in particular, an examination of reflexivity, dominant masculinities, different types of hegemonic masculinities, and intersectionality.

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Boyz2Men

Male Migrants’ Attitudes to Homosexuality and What Age Has To Do with It

Katarzyna Wojnicka

Abstract

The main goal of this article is to show how age distinguishes attitudes to non-heterosexuality among migrant men and boys living in Germany and Sweden. It will especially focus on discussing various perceptions and narratives regarding sexual diversity, the visibility of which is higher in the host countries, identified during three qualitative research projects with adult and young migrant men in Germany and Sweden. In the context of this particular Special Issue, the focus is put on verification of the validity of Connell's statement that homophobia is a crucial factor shaping men's and boys’ (hegemonic) masculinity negotiations, and hence, on investigation into the extent homophobia is still a significant part of men's narratives that shape the process of (self-) masculinity negotiations.

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Steven Roberts and Karla Elliott

Abstract

Raewyn Connell famously theorized hegemonic masculinity, explaining its dominance over femininity and “subordinated” and “marginalized” masculinities. Attending to representations of the latter, we argue that “men in the margin” are commonly wrongly and/or simplistically depicted as regressive and violent in response to their marginalization. Focusing on representations of working-class boys and men, we illustrate the stereotypical treatment of “men in the margin” more broadly, making clear that this goes against Connell's treatment of such men. Conversely, privileged boys and men are commonly held up by critical studies on men and masculinities scholars as paragons of progressive change. The characterization of boys and men in the margin as regressive and patriarchal impedes the ability to address problems like violence, misogyny, and homophobia and overlooks the possibilities for transformation that emerge among marginalized communities.

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Leisuring Masculinities in British Indian Childhoods

Explorations at the Intersection of Gender Order and Generational Order

Utsa Mukherjee

Abstract

In this article, I draw upon a qualitative study with 11- to 12-year-old middle-class British Indian boys and their parents to unpack the ways notions of young masculinities are negotiated within the context of children's leisure. Taking a relational approach, I argue that leisure-based masculinities of children are simultaneously generationed and gendered. By interrogating the intersection of what Raewyn Connell theorizes as “gender order” and what childhood sociologists call the “generational order,” I demonstrate that leisure-based young masculinities are forged within children's inter- (parent-child) and intra- (child-child) generational relationships around leisure. I conclude with a call for greater engagement with intersectional frameworks in the study of boys’ masculinity that simultaneously recognizes the gender and the generational structures of children's everyday lives.

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Raewyn Connell

Abstract

This essay discusses the intellectual and political context in which The Men and the Boys was written, the author's research trajectory leading to the book, its concern with practical issues of change in masculinities and gender relations, the new directions in its intellectual offerings, and the way it dealt with boyhood as a field of studies.

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Men and Masculinities the Journal

Raewyn Connell's Influence on its New Vision

Joseph D. Nelson, Tristan Bridges, and Kristen Barber

Abstract

In this reflective piece, the new editors of the historic journal Men and Masculinities explicate how key tenets of Raewyn Connell's scholarship informed their expanded vision of the journal. It begins with a meta-analysis of empirical research published in the journal for the last 20 years, and highlights its emphasis on contemporary scholarship from various disciplines and fields. Each facet of the journal's new vision is relayed thereafter, including its feminist perspective, international focus, and interdisciplinarity. It concludes with efforts by the editors to actualize their vision in the service of broadening the field of gender, boyhood, and masculinity studies.

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The Men and the Boys, Twenty Years On

Revisiting Raewyn Connell's Pivotal Text

Victoria Cann, Sebastián Madrid, Kopano Ratele, Anna Tarrant, Michael R.M. Ward, and Raewyn Connell

It is twenty years since the publication of Raewyn Connell's highly influential text The Men and the Boys. This book, building on feminist and pro-feminist perspectives of gender formation, was written over a ten-year period from the late 1980s to the late 1990s. It was published five years after the release of the groundbreaking text Masculinities (1995) and tackled multiple issues concerning boys and men. While providing an important platform and summary of where the research from the social science and humanities on men and masculinities stood in the year 2000, the book also contained a theoretical framework for understanding men and masculinities as part of gender relations. Importantly, the future direction of the field was outlined, and suggestions were made as to likely future agendas. These subjects included investigating the implications of globalization and its different characteristics on gender formation, the role of men's bodies, the impact of the media and culture in men's lives, sexuality, education, health, politics, change, violence, and peace. In recent years, questions about the lives and experiences of men and boys continue to raise remarkable media interest, public concern, and controversy on a global scale. Global changes in practices of knowledge have ensured that across the humanities and social sciences, research in the field of masculinities (of all ages) has continued to flourish and expand.

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Cinthia Torres Toledo and Marília Pinto de Carvalho

Abstract

Black working-class boys are the group with the most significant difficulties in their schooling process. In dialogue with Raewyn Connell, we seek to analyze how the collective conceptions of peer groups have influenced the school engagement of Brazilian boys. We conducted an ethnographic research with students around the age of 14 at an urban state school in the periphery of the city of São Paulo. We analyzed the hierarchization process between two groups of boys, demonstrating the existence of a collective notion of masculinity that works against engagement with the school. Well-known to the Anglophone academic literature, this association is rather uncommon in the Brazilian literature. We have therefore attempted to describe and analyze here the challenges faced by Black working-class Brazilian boys to establish more positive educational trajectories.

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Robert Morrell

Abstract

The study of masculinity in South Africa scarcely existed in 1990. A minor interest in gender was focused on women and inequality. South Africa was emerging from four decades of apartheid. It was into this environment that Raewyn Connell's ideas were introduced, adopted and adapted. Raewyn herself made a number of trips to South Africa in the 1990s and 2000s and found a ready reception for her theories about masculinity. South Africa was in transition feeling its way from white minority rule and authoritarianism toward democracy and a commitment to ending poverty, inequality, racism, and the oppression of women. In this article, I describe how Raewyn's idea energized scholarship, created a new research interest in men and masculinity, and contributed to gender activism.