Gender, Work & Organisation

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Volume 26 Issue 1 (January 2019), Pages 1-85

Gender still at work: Interrogating identity in discourses and practices of masculinity (pages 18-30)

Apart from a few paragraphs reminiscing on how, in response to a publisher contacting us, Jill, Marilyn and I founded Gender, Work and Organization combined with a few comments on its evolution as a leading journal in our field, this article largely summarizes and seeks to develop my lifelong interests in discourses and practices of masculinity. It pays tribute to my doctoral students and/or research colleagues with whom many of these ideas concerning masculinities were shaped. The article then surveys the literature on discourses and practices of masculinities through the three waves: the unitarist, the pluralist and, finally, the performativist approach to discourses and practices of masculinity. A central argument of the article is that although each wave has contributed something of importance to the critical examination of masculinities, none of them fully interrogate identity to theorize how our attachment to the security that it promises is illusory. Posthumanist feminists come closest to realizing this and seeking an alternative embodied and ethical engagement with, rather than a competitive elevation of self over, the other. In the conclusion, there is a brief comment on how the global backlash from the political right has made struggles against dominant masculinities all the more urgent.

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