Masculinities and self-representation in adolescent males' lives at school: Exploring pedagogical possibilities

Year: 2001

Author: Hatchell, Helen

Type of paper: Refereed paper

In this paper I explore how adolescent males represent themselves and picture their role and place in present day society. This research is based on a study conducted in a Year 10 English classroom in an all boys’ school. I explored how adolescent boys of different ethnic backgrounds were given opportunities to interrogate dominant forms of masculinities. I found one teacher opening up spaces for students to consider different positions of masculinities through specific texts. In the classroom, I observed how masculinities were played out. I also interviewed students in this English classroom about their responses to and engagement with selected educational texts. The research utilizes feminist theoretical perspectives, which have provided us with alternative ways of viewing and reporting empirical research relating to males and with alternative ways of theorizing masculinities. Despite some success in disrupting hegemonic masculinity discourses, this paper concludes that stereotypes continued to be reinforced despite attempts at dislodging and/or disrupting these beliefs.