Talking Politics, Performing Masculinities: Stories of Hong Kong Men before and after the Umbrella Movement

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JournalSex roles
DateAccepted/In press - 10 Dec 2017
DateE-pub ahead of print - 15 Feb 2018
DatePublished (current) - 17 Oct 2018
Issue number9
Number of pages15
Pages (from-to)533-548
Early online date15/02/18
Original languageEnglish


The present paper addresses the under-explored issue of the role of politics in the construction of masculinity, focusing specifically on political Confucianism and men's doing of gender in the context of Hong Kong's recent turbulent history. Between 2014 and 2016 we conducted a series of paired interviews and focus groups with 10 Hong Kong men from differing social backgrounds. Through cooperative grounded inquiry we demonstrate how political events and figures provided points of reference for these men in the construction and performance of masculinities. We emphasize the importance of Confucian hierarchical harmony to gender performance, elaborating three cultural logics—respectability, responsibility and romance—underpinning the
doing of Hong Kong masculinities. We thereby shed light on the mutual constitution of personal and political selves and how men define and redefine masculine ideals in times of political turbulence.

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    Research areas

  • Masculinities, Umbrella Movement, Confucianism, Gender, Social Movements

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