Rediscovering Masculinity: Reason, Language, and Sexuality

Rediscovering Masculinity: Reason, Language, and Sexuality

Rediscovering Masculinity: Reason, Language, and Sexuality

Rediscovering Masculinity: Reason, Language, and Sexuality

Synopsis

Men have responded to feminism with feelings of anxiety, guilt and unease. It has taken time for men to consider ways of changing themselves rather than hiding behind feminist rhetoric.

Excerpt

This is both a personal and a theoretical book. It is a contribution to an understanding of a particular masculinity in its social and historical formation. It is also the experience of a particular man and his growing up into masculinity. It attempts to share some of the pain and confusion of that education. It does not attempt to talk for all men, though I sometimes talk in terms of 'we' to encourage some form of mutual recognition and identification where it might feel appropriate across differences of class, race and ethnicity. in some ways it is also a reflection on some of the difficulties created for heterosexual men with the challenges of feminism. This calls us as men to think again about who we are and who we would want to be as men.

To begin to confront the character of our historical grounding, and to respond to the challenges that feminism has presented us with as men by thinking through our potential to become more who we want to be, involves, I believe, necessarily both a personal and a theoretical exploration. This is not to argue for two radically distinct forms of exploration. Rather, this work is concerned with the interrelationship of these levels. Social theory has provided different accounts of the relationship between them, and part of my focus is to consider the sense in which these accounts have been limited.

Broadly, I want to argue that the rationalism which social theory has tended to build on and retain is itself at the basis of many of the problems we face, as men, when we try to change. If it is important to recognize in this process that our identities are historically forged, it is also important to retain the substance of our individual experience as a theoretical resource. I want to

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