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Diana Saco

In: Men, Masculinity, and the Media

Chapter 3: Masculinity as Signs: Poststructuralist Feminist Approaches to the Study of Gender1

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Masculinity as Signs: Poststructuralist Feminist Approaches to the Study of Gender1
Masculinity as signs: Poststructuralist feminist approaches to the study of gender
DianaSaco

Our commonsense understandings of gender share with traditional social science studies the view that masculinity is a fact of nature. As interpretive genealogical analyses of these discourses show, however, academic and popular discourses work to naturalize the very concept that has been so unproblematically embraced as fact. What is at issue in these interpretive analyses is the facticity of masculinity—how masculinity is constructed, within sign systems, as given and obvious. Masculinity as signs contributes as much to the traditional researchers to ascribe “masculinity” to men and “femininity” to women. Whatever the physical differences between men and women, ascriptions like “masculine” constitute human beings as ...

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