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

Petula Sik Ying Ho, Stephanie Forsythe Jackson, Jun Rene Lam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


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.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)533-548
Number of pages15
JournalSex roles
Issue number9
Early online date15 Feb 2018
Publication statusPublished - 17 Oct 2018

Bibliographical note

© Springer Science+Business Media, 2018. This is an author-produced version of the published paper. Uploaded in accordance with the publisher’s self-archiving policy. Further copying may not be permitted; contact the publisher for details


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

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