Masculinities and the Law: A Multidimensional Approach

Masculinities and the Law: A Multidimensional Approach

Masculinities and the Law: A Multidimensional Approach

Masculinities and the Law: A Multidimensional Approach

Synopsis

According to masculinities theory, masculinity is not a biological imperative but a social construction. Men engage in a constant struggle with other men to prove their masculinity. Masculinities and the Law develops a multidimensional approach. It sees categories of identity- including various forms of masculinities- as operating simultaneously and creating different effects in different contexts. By applying multidimensional masculinities theory to law, this cutting-edge collection both expands the field of masculinities and develops new thinking about important issues in feminist and critical race theories. The book analyzes a variety of topics, including the relationship between masculinities and feminist theories, the identities of firefighters, the television show The Wire, Constitutional Law, discrimination in workplaces and sports, Latino migrant workers, the use of the veil in Turkey, masculinities in post-war societies, and even Jamaica's legal and musical culture. Ultimately, the book argues that multidimensional masculinities theory can change how law is interpreted and applied.

Excerpt

Michael Kimmel

Not so long ago, a volume on “Masculinities and Law” would have been a non sequiter. It wasn’t really until the 1960s that feminists began to question the exclusion of actual, real, corporeal women from the legal profession, and it took another decade until feminist legal theorists revealed that the relationship of gender and law was not merely a simple dynamic of discrimination or exclusion. Those earlier scholars had often assumed that gender was like property—a possession, something one either “had” or “acquired” through some mystical process called socialization, by which the values and norms of society were inscribed onto a black slate creature, much as the crimes of Kafka’s penal colony inhabitants had their crimes inscribed upon their skin. and still, when one said “gender,” one meant women. a course on Gender and Law in the late 1980s would have largely centered on discrimination against women—workplace discrimination, sex-typing of jobs, sex segregation—and the exclusion of women from various institutions, such as the military or fire departments. By the end of that decade, such a course would . . .

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