• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This book explores the relationship between masculinity and violence within the context of cultural change and escalating violence. This unique analysis links the growing sociological and psychological literature on masculinity with contemporary criminological research. The author focuses on: A critical examination of the major biological, psychological, sociological, and anthropological models of masculinity and violence; Formulating an integrated theoretical approach to the relationship between violence and masculinity; Violence as a gendered activity; Representations of violence and masculinity in popular culture including cartoons, fiction, television and film. Masculine identity is not viewed as rigid, but as flexible and changeable. This position enables the author to take a completely fresh look at relations between power, privilege, and gender.

Of Excess, Lack, and Displacement: Reel Violence
Of excess, lack, and displacement: Reel violence

Grace (to Mickey): You're a vampire, or the devil, or a monster, or cyborg, or something like that. But you're not human.

—Natural Born Killers (1994)

The masculinist descent to the primitive has resurfaced in another guise—the return of the monster as hyper-masculine beast…. In Wolf, Jack Nicholson's transformation reconnects his character, a somewhat stuffily effete book editor, with a fierce, heroic, and sensual nature that civilized discourse had all but completely sapped. (Even his vision gets sharper.) But for James Spader, his rival, that same descent brings out a deeper cruelty, less concealed by social convention. Nicholson uses his descent to elevate his manhood while Spader uses his as an invitation to unchecked ...

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