Hegemonic Masculinity and the Fag Discourse
Hegemonic Masculinity and the Fag Discourse
Various cultures and societies engender different types of relationships between men and women, which are characterized by equality or superiority, subordination or manipulation. Portrayal and expression of masculinity also depends on the social environment. Some cultures impose one type of relationships while forbidding others. This gives rise to the appearance of pressure in the society directed on a person not fitting in set norms and regulations. This paper will analyze hegemonic masculinity; describe fag discourse, institutional reflexivity, and compulsive heterosexuality and discuss possible methods they are established in the society. To accomplish this task, this study will use the concept of Goffman in order to provide comprehensive and credible information on hegemonic masculinity. In addition this paper will use the work of Pascoe to explain the meaning of fag discourse, as well as precise understanding of hegemonic masculinity.
Hegemonic masculinity is a concept applied in the society which presupposes dominance of men over women. It is a social type of males behavior which is highly recognized among the western communities (Laurel, 1997). Hegemonic masculinity does not cover a specific type of men, it rather establishes the way they act and interact in the society. Such practice could be considered artificial, as it does not correspond to the true nature of men. There are various forms of hegemonic masculinity, including complicit masculinity, marginalized masculinity, and subordinated masculinity. Complicit masculinity refers to the men who acquire the advantage of patriarchy without enhancing the exact kind of hegemonic masculinity. The men practicing this type of masculinity suppose that dominating behavior could be beneficial for them. They tend to conform to other representatives of their gender, but they do it unwittingly. Another form is marginalized masculinity that refers to those undermined on the basis of skin color and financial background. The society forces a person to express this or that type of behavior due to their racial, economic, physical
characteristics. Subordinated masculinity, on the contrary, are considered to be connected with the opposite way of hegemonic masculinity behavior. It is mostly related to female characteristics. Major form of this type is homosexuality.
The society imposes certain way of reaction to the men. For instance, there is a belief that to become a decent man one has to be heterosexual. This leads to the men putting themselves away from homosexuality by means of homophobic manner. Demetriou (2001) states, there is external and internal hegemony, whereby external hegemony is the underestimation of women by men while internal hegemony is the underestimation by some groups of men (8).
It is also created in response to womens reactions and other kinds of masculinities and requires the control of other men, since it is insecure. Hegemonic masculinity is the opposite case and it does not always refer to civilizing supremacy (Gilmore, 1990). It may also be connected with the types of feminity that are undermined and mostly debated upon. It is directed to achieve the values and needs of men and is basically practiced for their sake. Connell (1995) argues, Masculinities are the models of rehearsals that are achieved in social activity and can therefore be different in respect to gender base in a certain make (12). The behavior that is not approved by other members of society could lead to abuse on the part of persons environment. Such reactions could be directed on a person with wrong behavior to impose them the ordinary way of social interaction. One of the consequences of there reactions is the appearance of fag discourse.
The word fag is generally used to describe a person expressing feminine characteristics of behavior. Fag is frequently a fluid identity for members in a societal setting, primarily members affiliated to the masculine nature who have a tendency to exhibit feminine characteristics. In addition, fag is more associated with homosexuality. Fag discourse is associated with the environment of educational institutions, where the boys call their peers fags is they do not correspond to the norms of hegemonic masculinity while interacting with their mates. Fag discourse is also used to see how the learning institution leads to the creation of gender sensitiveness. Pascoe (2011) generally describes it as various aspects of sexuality, masculinity, social rank, race, and institutional activities that represent pubescent masculinity in a given situation.
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Fag discourse is the process by which absolute facts of adolescent masculinity are collectively reviewed. This concept also demonstrates why learning institutions are complex and competitive for the development of a teenagers sexuality (Gilmore, 1990). Therefore, fag discourse firms the continued existence of male dominance in various society settings. With reference to this, men or rather boys in settings where they experience stratification based on feminity and masculinity tend to engage in physical and sometimes aggressive acts and behaviors to show off their masculinity to their mates (Pascoe, 2011).
The example of fag discourse also demonstrates how various individuals in a given society are generally differentiated or put apart from the rest of the society due to various distinguishing characteristics. A learning institution habitually tries to establish certain ways of coping with fag discourse. There are various methods that teach the learners and enable them to handle the fag discourse. They also show how fag discourse generates the kind of behavior in regard to the mode of nuisance (Pascoe, 2011).
Institutional reflexivity refers to the influence of institutions to overemphasize sex disparities. Boys and girls are generally differentiated through various forms such as clothing, mannerism and different portrayal of emotions, as well as different regulations in behavior and reactions. They also tend to have different understanding to basic facts on educational matters. This brings a conclusion that artificial gender display forms the major difference between male and female.
Berger and Luckmann (1979) state, In gender display, people feel normal in a mind perception that they are complete without much sweat because taken for the sake of sex is a commodity of interaction not efficient normality (23). Sexual disparities are due to the processes of togetherness where each sex turns out to be a training tool for the other.
According to Goffmann (1977), gender is our major aspect of contemporary life, as well as the capability to know how to practice and realize masculinity and feminity. It is closely related to River High in its operations as a normal portrayal of vitality to put women to their place of social setting and to back an understanding that there is an underneath truth to gender. Order is vital to that conception. Hence, sex itself is a commodity of scenery that removes the consequences and not the reasons. People tend to define sexual groupings in their own formats and styles (Goffman, 1977). This leads to the people taking them for granted other than asking relevant questions on these matters and finding absolute and accurate solutions to them.
Compulsive heterosexuality refers to the customs, accepted regularities, and institutional activities that hold natural perception that there are only two genders. Moreover, sexual attractiveness between male and female is normally considered as being legal. Sex is usually brought upon or concluded by biological criteria and regarded by the augmentation of a persons mannerism in connection to the moral expectations of sex groupings.
Domination is an important aspect in heterosexuality since it assists individuals to know the identification that relies on gender portrayal and, more often, to the achieving of optimistic results .On the basis of gender rituals of touch; girls are more vulnerable in every societal structure. They have certain biological characteristics that are considered major distinction from men. A good example is breastfeeding kids and menstruation. Due to these natural factors they seem to pose a great aspect with regard to gender rituals of touch.
Girls often use polite language when talking about their relationships and feelings unlike boys who tend to use mean language (William, Johnson & Kolodny, 1994). In the sphere of educational institutions, they play less compared to the boys and often take part in less tasking games. They tend to be fragile and avoid being hurt especially during games. They are becoming experts in identifying other peoples characteristics, for example, mode of dressing. They are good in talking about it and coming up with possible judgments concerning the subject.
Girls are also good in sharing inner secrets and feelings, as this tends to relieve stress among them. They are more attentive in creating intimacy and talking about relationships among themselves. This enables them to identify if various boys are suitable for them or not. When it comes to physical touch, they are very sensitive since they avoid certain areas which are considered improper.
this paper has provided adequate information on the various aspects of hegemonic masculinity and the ways it relates to other aspects of life in terms of peoples perception and reality. In addition, the paper has provided comprehensive information on the meaning of fag discourse and how it is described with regard to diverse aspects. To acquire authoritative information on the subject matter, this paper has adopted the information stated in the works of Goffman and Pascoe.