Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School

Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School

Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School

Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School

Synopsis

High school and the difficult terrain of sexuality and gender identity are brilliantly explored in this smart, incisive ethnography. Based on eighteen months of fieldwork in a racially diverse working-class high school, Dude, You're a Fag sheds new light on masculinity both as a field of meaning and as a set of social practices. C. J. Pascoe's unorthodox approach analyzes masculinity as not only a gendered process but also a sexual one. She demonstrates how the "specter of the fag" becomes a disciplinary mechanism for regulating heterosexual as well as homosexual boys and how the "fag discourse" is as much tied to gender as it is to sexuality.

Excerpt

Two years after completing the research for Dude, You’re a Fag, I found myself in an urban Starbucks about fifty miles and a world away from Riverton. I sat in that coffee shop talking to Craig and his friend Josh, both high school students, about their use of new media. Craig was walking me through his mediated activities, telling me who he called on his cell phone, showing me his favorite websites to visit, and displaying the prolific collection of videos he had created and posted on YouTube. Laughing as he pulled it up, he eagerly showed me a video of him and his friends out to dinner at a local IHOP. Craig had whipped out his camera after finding out that his friend Kevin was short money for dinner. Craig agreed to lend Kevin money, but only on the condition that Kevin repeat a series of confessional phrases which Craig would videotape and place on YouTube. The video begins with Kevin burying his head in his hands asking, “You’re going to take a video of this and post it on YouTube aren’t you?!” Craig ignores Kevin’s plea, saying, “Anyway, repeat after me. I, Kevin James Wong.”

KEVIN: I, Kevin James Wong.

CRAIG: Seventeen years old.

KEVIN [giggling with embarrassment]: Seventeen years old.

CRAIG: Senior at Valley High School.

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