Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/2445/35010
Title: Gendering Men: Theorizing Masculinities in American Culture and Literature
Author: Armengol Carrera, José María
Director: Carabí, Àngels, 1950-
Keywords: Processos d'adquisició de gènere
Masculinitat
Cultura nord-americana contemporània
Representació literària
Issue Date: 29-Jun-2006
Publisher: Universitat de Barcelona
Abstract: [eng] This thesis attempts to "gender" men by theorizing masculinities in American culture and literature. It tries to demonstrate that (white heterosexual) men, like women, are also gendered beings; that they have, therefore, undergone specific social, cultural, and historical gendering processes; and that, in contemporary American culture, such gendering processes play a key role in men's lives as well as their literary representations. Focusing on masculinity as a specific political and social construction, rather than a universal and immutable entity, the study aims, ultimately, to prove that what was socially formed might be socially and culturally re-formed as well. These main theses are developed throughout two main parts and five different chapters. Whereas Part I (chapters 1-2) tries to offer a general theoretical introduction to American studies of masculinities, in general, and to the analysis of white heterosexual masculinity, the focus of this study, in particular, Part II (chapters 3-5) applies an interdisciplinary corpus of masculinity studies (formed by sociology, psychology and psychoanalysis, anthropology, philosophy, history, literary theory and literature, etc.) to prove and analyze the influence of masculinity on the construction of emotions and violence in contemporary American culture and literature. These two topics have been selected considering their special relevance, as the thesis illustrates, to contemporary American culture, in general, and masculinity scholarship, in particular. Trying to offer a theoretical introduction to masculinity studies in the United States, Chapter 1 begins exploring the origins and development of these studies. The chapter acknowledges as well the influence of feminism, which can and should be embraced by both women and men, on the study of masculinity, and concludes by pointing to the latest trends of masculinity studies in the United States. Chapter 2 goes on to reconcile feminist politics with the deconstructive analysis of masculinity's internal contradictions. It posits that it is no longer clear that feminist theory should rely on notions of fixed identity in order to go on with politics. Instead, it explores the new political possibilities that might emerge from a radical critique of masculine identity. Rethinking the subject of emotions, chapter 3 shows how the exclusive association of emotions with femininity is a socio-historical construction which might, therefore, be questioned and changed. Focus is thus given to the links between masculinity and emotion in American culture, in order to analyze the political potential of profeminist men's emotions to transform masculinities and gender relations. It is argued that emotion plays a central role in profeminist men's socio-political struggles against gender inequality, as their numerous campaigns against domestic violence or their increasing involvement in childcare, for example, are showing. Chapter 4 demonstrates how cultural and literary representations of masculinity are particularly relevant to the analysis of the social and political construction of masculinities. Offering a general introduction to studies of American literary masculinities, the chapter explores the origins, development, and critical possibilities of this innovative research field. As is argued, revisiting American literature from a men's studies perspective might help question patriarchal notions of masculinities and look for new, alternative, non-oppressive patterns of manhood. Most of these theoretical arguments about literary masculinities are developed and exemplified in chapter 5, which incorporates literature into the discussion of masculinity and violence in American culture. Crossing the divide between "reality" and "fiction," then, chapter 5 analyzes the social and literary construction of male violence. Even though the connection between masculinity and violence seems deeply ingrained in the cultural and literary history of the U.S., chapter 5 concludes that what was culturally constructed might, hopefully, be culturally de-constructed, too, and that American literature could play an important role in this de-construction.
[spa] Esta tesis intenta hacer el género visible a los hombres, teorizando las masculinidades en la cultura y literatura de los Estados Unidos. Se pretende demostrar que los hombres (blancos y heterosexuales), al igual que las mujeres, están dotados de un género específico; que están, por tanto, sometidos a procesos de adquisición de género social, cultural e históricamente específicos; y que, en la cultura estadounidense actual, dichos procesos de adquisición de género juegan un papel fundamental en las vidas cotidianas de los hombres así como sus representaciones literarias. Centrándose en la masculinidad como una construcción política y social específica, antes que una entidad universal e inmutable, el estudio procura, en última instancia, demostrar que lo que fue formado socialmente puede ser igualmente re-formado social y culturalmente. Estas tesis generales son desarrolladas a lo largo de dos partes principales y cinco capítulos diferentes. Mientras que la primera parte (capítulos 1-2) intenta ofrecer una introducción general a los estudios estadounidenses sobre masculinidades, en general, y al análisis de la masculinidad blanca y heterosexual, el foco de este estudio, en particular, la segunda parte (capítulos 3-5) aplica un corpus interdisciplinario de estudios de las masculinidades (formado por la sociología, psicología y psicoanálisis, antropología, filosofía, historia, teoría literaria y literatura, etc.) al análisis de la influencia de la masculinidad en la construcción de las emociones y la violencia en la cultura y literatura estadounidenses contemporáneas. Estos dos temas han sido seleccionados considerando su especial relevancia, como la tesis ilustra, para la cultura americana contemporánea, en general, y los estudios de la masculinidad, en concreto. Mientras que el capítulo 1 ofrece una visión panorámica de los estudios norteamericanos de las masculinidades, explorando sus orígenes y desarrollo, el capítulo 2 explora las nuevas tendencias de los estudios de la masculinidad, intentando reconciliar la política feminista con el análisis deconstructivista de las contradicciones internas de la masculinidad. El capítulo 3 procede a estudiar los vínculos entre la masculinidad y las emociones en la cultura americana, con el fin de analizar el potencial político de las emociones de los varones pro-feministas para transformar las masculinidades y las relaciones de género. Si el capítulo 4 proporciona una introducción teórica a los estudios de las masculinidades literarias estadounidenses, el capítulo 5 aplica los estudios de la masculinidad al análisis de la violencia masculina en la cultura y literatura de los Estados Unidos. Aunque la conexión entre masculinidad y violencia parece estar profundamente enraizada en la cultura norteamericana, el capítulo 5 concluye que lo que fue construido culturalmente puede ser también de-construido, y que la literatura norteamericana podría jugar un papel fundamental en dicha deconstrucción.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2445/35010
ISBN: 978846903675
Appears in Collections:Tesis Doctorals - Departament - Filologia Anglesa i Alemanya

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00.JMAC_PREVIOUS.pdf259.08 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
01.JMAC_INTRODUCTION.pdf227.14 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
02.JMAC_PART_I.pdf641.03 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
03.JMAC_PART_II.pdf979.17 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
04.JMAC_CONCLUSIONS.pdf166.75 kBAdobe PDFView/Open
05.JMAC_WORKS_CITED.pdf229.77 kBAdobe PDFView/Open


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