Making It Like a Man
Canadian Masculinities in Practice
Publication Year: 2011
Published by: Wilfrid Laurier University Press
Series: Cultural Studies
Title Page, Copyright Page
List of Illustrations
As we know, all books –– whether single authored, co-written, or collections of individual essays –– are the products of dialogue and collective effort. I would like to thank the contributors; my colleagues and friends Angela Stukator, Stephen McClatchie, and David Garneau for their earlier editorial contributions to this volume; ...
Making It Like a Man: Canadian Masculinities in Practice is a collection of essays on the practice of masculinities in Canadian arts and cultures. In this anthology we are interested in mapping some of the uniquely Canadian spaces –– contemporary and historical –– in the international field of masculinity studies for an academic and culturally informed audience. ...
I: Identity, Agency, and Manliness in the Colonial and the National
Chapter 1. Carnival and Masculinity in the Travel Fiction of James De Mille
Scholars in the humanities and social sciences tend to accept the premise that gender is a social construction rather than an innate biological phenomenon. Moreover, such constructions are the product of complex social and cultural negotiations, as Stephen M. Whitehead suggests: ...
Chapter 2. “No Money, but Muscle and Pluck”: Cultivating Trans-Imperial Manliness for the Fields of Empire, 1870–1901
In 1878, Thomas Spence, immigration handbook author and a clerk in the Legislative Assembly of Manitoba, encouraged “any man, whatever his station in life may be, who is able and willing to work and has any adaptability for agricultural pursuits” to immigrate to the Canadian prairies.1 ...
Chapter 3. Who’s on the Home Front? Canadian Masculinity in the NFB’s Second World War Series “Canada Carries On”
It is widely accepted, and rightfully so, that the prestige of Canada’s documentary tradition is wedded to the success of its Second World War–era film series, Canada Carries On. John Grierson, founding commissioner of the National Film Board of Canada, and Stuart Legg, the executive producer of the series ...
II: Emotional Geographies of Anxiety, Eros, and Impairment
Chapter 4. Making Art Like a Man!
Making It Like a Man! is the exhibition I curated for the MacKenzie Art Gallery (Regina, Saskatchewan) to accompany the conference and film series of the same name that took place in Regina in the summer of 2004. This chapter of Making It Like a Man: Canadian Masculinities in Practice, titled “Making Art Like a Man,” ...
Chapter 5. “Above Mere Men”: The Heterogeneous Male in Attila Richard Lukacs
Vancouver-based painter Attila Richard Lukacs continues to draw critical focus on his original work and modern-day bohemian lifestyle. The recent documentary film Drawing Out the Demons1 traces back two decades of the artist’s challenging circular journey from Calgary, via Vancouver, to Berlin and New York, and back to Calgary and Vancouver. ...
Chapter 6. Stranger Than Paradise: Immigration and Impaired Masculinities
Displaced persons hoping for another chance to “recycle their wasted lives,” as the Polish-born social philosopher Zygmunt Bauman would have it, are gradually but surely evolving from exception to norm in our “liquid modern world.”1 Therefore, frictions between the welcoming populace and the newcomers ...
III: The Minority Male
Chapter 7. The “Hood” Reconfigured: Black Masculinity in Rude
The concept of masculinity has emerged as an important area of concern as theorists seek to broaden understandings of gender. As Stephen Whitehead explains, “the concept of the masculine subject is useful” because “it highlights the multiple discursivity that posits individuality on the subject, while also acknowledging the performative character of this constitution.”1 ...
Chapter 8. “Keepin’ It Real”? Masculinity, Indigeneity, and Media Representations of Gangsta Rap in Regina
The city of Regina, Saskatchewan, is burdened with a highly contentious reputation as one of Canada’s most violent and socially impoverished cities. This reputation is mapped onto the neighbourhoods known as “North Central” and the downtown “Core” through a discourse of both “true” accounts and sensationalized racist and gendered narratives ...
Chapter 9. Fixing Stories “Is Sure a Lot of Work”: Watching “the Men’s Dance” in Medicine River and Green Grass, Running Water
In the 2003 Massey Lectures, The Truth about Stories: A Native Narrative, Cherokee/Greek/American/Canadian author Thomas King claims that stories “control our lives”; that stories “told one way [can] cure, [but] told another way [can] injure”; that stories “try to set the world straight”; and that if we want a different ethic, we need to tell “a different story.”1 ...
Chapter 10. Masculinity in a Minority Setting: The Emblematic Body in Simone Chaput’s Le coulonneux
I would like to examine here an issue at the confluence of minority masculinities in Canada: minority studies and globalization. François Paré1 examines the paradoxical identity configuration that is specific to minorities in a globalized world and that transforms the individual’s relationship to identity and origin. ...
IV: Capitalized, Corporatized, Compromised Men
Chapter 11. The Politics of Marginalization at the Centre: Canadian Masculinities and Global Capitalism in Douglas Coupland’s Generation X
In his 2009 novel, Generation A, Douglas Coupland sets out to revise the ideas and tropes from his debut novel, Generation X, published eighteen years earlier, in 1991. In Generation A, bees have all but disappeared from the world because of the development of the drug Solon, which is toxic to bees and causes humans to experience time ...
Chapter 12. Dangerous Homosexualities and Disturbing Masculinities: The Disabling Rhetoric of Difference in Barbara Gowdy’s Mister Sandman
In “Compulsory Able-Bodiedness and Queer/Disabled Existence,” Robert McRuer engages with Adrienne Rich’s feminist critique of compulsory heterosexuality and her theory that “lesbian existence” is central to the construction of heterosexual relations.1 In positing that “the system of compulsory able-bodiedness that produces disability ...
V: Abject Masculinities
Chapter 13. What Do Heterosexual Men Want? Or, “The (Wandering) Queer Eye on the (Straight) Guy”
In the winter of 2004 I spent seven weeks in India, unfortunately during the never-ending cricket tournament between that country and their nuclear rival Pakistan. With roughly two billion eyes glued to the urgent television spectacle of strained and sweaty men hurling, batting, and desperately chasing a hard round object, ...
Chapter 14. Boy to the Power of Three: Toronto’s Drag Kings
Let me make a confession at the outset: I love drag kings. I am what you might call an academic fan of drag kings. I saw my first drag king show on June 29, 1995, when the Greater Toronto Drag King Society staged a “Drag King Invasion I,” at a Toronto drag bar called El Convento Rico to an audience of about 600 screaming fans. ...
Chapter 15. Life Without Death? Space, Affect, and Masculine Identity in the Work of Frank Cole
In The Pearly Gates of Cyberspace: A History of Space from Dante to the Internet, Margaret Wertheim concludes that “in the final analysis, our conception of ourselves is indelibly linked to our conception of space . . . Conceptions of space and conceptions of self mirror one another. In a very real sense, we are the products of our spatial schemes.”1 ...
Michael Baker (Ph.D., McGill University) is the FQRSC Postdoctoral Fellow in the Centre for Cinema Studies, Department of Theatre and Film, at the University of British Columbia. He is co-editor of Challenge for Change: Activist Documentary at the National Film Board of Canada (with Thomas Waugh and Ezra Winton) ...