Implinity In Modern Culture: Queer Masculinity And Media

Powerful Essays
Queer Masculinity & Media
Masculinity, according to Kimmel (1994), is not a manifestation of our inner-self but rather a social construct consisting of attributes and behaviors associated with boys and men that are a part of historical culture. While masculinity can vary across the globe depending on cultures, Western society’s common masculinity traits include dominance, assertiveness, sexual ability, and intelligence (cite). Masculinity, from a Western view, has been too narrow, making young men’s interests less valuable by the evolving social conditions in which they live (Clayton, Hewitt, & Gaffney, 2004).
From the framework of masculinity, there has been a shift into hypermasculinity, which is an overemphasis and exaggerated adherence
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This socialization is upheld by a white, cisgender, heteronormative, patriarchal society that embeds what masculinity should represent in Western culture. An example of this would be how phrases such as “boys will be boys”, “be a man”, and “men don’t cry” are normalized within society and how boys are pushed to do sports while girls are pushed to do arts. This is a fundamental flaw within an institutional setting. Messner (1992) emphasizes that when boys start playing competitive sport they are not just learning a game, they are entering institutions organized to uphold the binary of masculinity and…show more content…
This means that there is no grounded or fixed self but rather a fluid arrangement of multiple subject positions which together provide a sense of identity (cite). This rings especially true for queerness. According to (cite), “queer” can be used as an umbrella term for sexual and gender minorities who are not straight and/or not cisgender. However, queer can also be used to describe a non-normative or fluid way of life, specifically meaning to break outside of the binary of hetero- and cis- normativity. People who use the term and self-identify as queer are actively resisting the binaries put into place that uphold masculine and feminine constructs. The importance of masculinity to this process of queer identity work is in the validation it can give to the queer or fluid self. If society were to accept that there is no core self, then socially dominant forms, such as being masculine and straight, would not be viewed as the norm, which means boys and men would be able to express themselves more freely and fluidly without the backlash of being
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