Rethinking 'masculinities in transition' in South Africa considering the 'intersectionality' of race, class, and sexuality with gender

SOURCE: African Identities
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2013
TITLE AUTHOR(S): B.Moolman
KEYWORDS: GENDER, IDENTITY, MASCULINITY, MEN, POST APARTHEID SOUTH AFRICA, SEXUAL BEHAVIOUR
DEPARTMENT: Human and Social Development (HSD)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 7668

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Abstract

South Africa as a socio-political space of transition provides the opportunity for the renegotiation and contestation of taken-for-granted social identities. Social identities are practiced and performed through broad social processes and solidified through social institutions. I explore the usefulness of the concept of intersectionality for the framing of South African masculinities. Race, class, ethnicity/culture, sexuality, and gender are lived through everyday micro-practices in a range of social spaces such as work and home, yet macro-practices of race, class, ethnicity/culture, and sexuality have had a profound (but maybe less visible) shaping of social, gendered identities. South Africa's political and social transition is captured through the introduction of multiple pieces of legislation such as the Growth, Employment and Redistribution Strategy and the Civil Union Act (2006) that directly impacts the performance and practice of social identities. This paper is informed by qualitative research conducted with incarcerated, sex offenders in three South African prisons. This paper contributes to a growing body of knowledge on the significance of an intersectional framing of masculinities as central in the reproduction/production of social power and social identities.