One of the Boys : Masculinity, Homophobia, and Modern Manhood book cover
1st Edition

One of the Boys
Masculinity, Homophobia, and Modern Manhood

ISBN 9781560239741
Published October 20, 1999 by Routledge
374 Pages

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USD $52.95

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Book Description

One of the Boys: Masculinity, Homophobia, and Modern Manhood takes a fresh look at the formation of modern male sexual identities. You will find that homophobia is not only widespread, but that it takes diverse forms and has far-reaching behavioral and social consequences. The new concept of “homophobic passage,” which is part of the development of all young men, will enlighten you as to the proposed “causes” of homosexuality and heterosexuality.

One of the Boys will help you discover how the passage of young males from childhood to adulthood plays an important role in formation of the modern adult male self in gay and straight men. As a result, this knowledge will allow you to offer relevant services to clients who are struggling with societal stereotypes and identity issues.

From this informative book, you will discover how homophobia plays a role in the increase in violence experienced by gay men and lesbians in our culture today. To help you offer improved services, One of the Boys discusses why homophobia is widespread, takes diverse forms, and has far-reaching behavioral and social consequences by:

  • examining the school playground and its many effects on children’s peer groups to discover how profoundly names like “crybaby” and “poofter” can impact a child’s development
  • learning that children often cannot escape harmful labels and stereotypes at home and realizing how it impacts a child’s developing sense of self
  • discovering the media’s influence on role models and realizing the important role television and magazines play in providing information about homosexuality and homophobia
  • realizing the heavy pressure homophobia exerts on men and how it shapes their relationships with women and other men, how emotionally close they allow themselves to get to people, how affectionate they are, and with whom they have sexual relations

    Through One of the Boys, you will gain valuable insight into the masculinity of the men interviewed and how it was shaped in order for you to develop a greater understanding of men and the many influences of society as a whole. This unique study investigates the development of homophobia and the meanings and significances people associate with it to help you understand how and where homophobia originates in our society.

Table of Contents


  • Acknowledgements
  • Introduction
  • Chapter 1: The Homophobic Puzzle
  • Defining Homophobia
  • Clarifying the Terms of Reference
  • The ‘Epidemiology’ of Homophobia: Studies of Homophobic Violence
  •  The Significance of Homophobia: Evidence from Twentieth Century Public Life
  • Chapter 2: Swearing Allegiance
  • Homophobic Meanings
  •  Cataloging Homophobic Meanings
  •  Evolving Homophobic Meanings: ‘Onion Skinning’
  • The Power of Homophobic Words
  •  Homophobia and ‘Otherness’
  •  Conclusions
  •  Chapter 3: Separating the Men From the Boys
  • School
  • The Divided School Ground
  • The Classroom
  • Home
  • The Media
  •  Conclusion
  •  Chapter 4: Fashioning the Male ‘Self’
  •  Homophobia Prior to Adult Sexual Identity: Pressures Which Shape Boys’ Behavior
  • Homophobic Pressures from a Nonhomosexual Perspective
  • Homophobia and Being Homosexual
  •  Homophobia and Identity
  • Conclusions
  • Chapter 5: Regulating Male Intimacy
  • Physical Engagement: Sport
  • Manhood Exposed: The Change Rooms
  •  Putting Those Fears to Bed: Sleeping Together
  • Knowing When to Get Off: Sexual Restraint and Transgression
  • Friendships, Relationships, and Being Homosexually Active
  •  Conclusions
  •  Chapter 6: On the Origins of the Sexual Species
  • Homophobic Logic: Mobile Differences and Consistent Negative Bias
  • Between Suppression and Expression
  • Taming Polymorphous Perversity
  •  Homophobic Passage: The Orderer of Things
  • Conclusions
  • Appendix A: Methods
  • Choice of Methods
  • Methodological Theory
  • Sampling
  • Recruitment
  • Interview Structure
  • Analysis: Interpretation, Validity, and Wider Significance
  • Conclusions
  • Appendix B: Sample
  • Participant Profiles
  • Conclusions
  • Appendix C.: ATLG Scores
  • References
  • Index
  • References Notes Included

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David Plummer