Download Boys don't cry?: rethinking narratives of masculinity and by Milette Shamir, Jennifer Travis PDF

By Milette Shamir, Jennifer Travis

We take with no consideration the concept that white, middle-class, directly masculinity connotes overall keep watch over of feelings, emotional inexpressivity, and emotional isolation. That males repress their emotions as they search their fortunes within the aggressive worlds of commercial and politics appears a given. This selection of essays by way of well-known literary and cultural critics rethinks such more often than not held perspectives by way of addressing the background and politics of emotion in winning narratives approximately masculinity. How did the tale of the emotionally stifled U.S. male come into being? What are its political stakes? Will the "release" of heterosexual, white, middle-class masculine emotion remake current types of strength or strengthen them? This assortment forcefully demanding situations our so much entrenched rules approximately male emotion. via readings of works by means of Thoreau, Lowell, and W. E. B. Du Bois, and of 20th century authors corresponding to Hemingway and Kerouac, this ebook questions the patience of the emotionally alienated male in narratives of white middle-class masculinity and addresses the political and social implications of male emotional unencumber.

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25 Thus, at its most sublime, feeling is the vehicle by which one may discover and exercise a will beyond and against one’s natural, self-serving inclination. qxd 12/26/01 10:45 Page 29 What Feels an American? ”27 And it is the affectionate will by which Edwards himself overcomes his intellectual “objections against the doctrine of God’s sovereignty, in choosing whom he would to eternal life, and rejecting whom he pleased,” and discovers in place of these objections “not only . . ”28 The most striking and significant contrast between Edwards’s “Personal Narrative” and Franklin’s autobiography is the pervasiveness of the language of emotional and sensory experience in the former and its virtual absence, except as an object (lesson) of containment, in the latter.

9 (emphasis in original). 3. “Code Hero” was termed by Philip Young; see Thomas Strychacz’s essay in this volume. “American Cool” is analyzed most extensively by Peter Stearns in a book by that title. While the book does not emphasize “coolness” as a particularly masculine emotional style, recent work insists on gendering it. Susan Fraiman, for instance, analyzes performances of coolness in academia in terms of a masculine disavowal of femininity/feminism. See her forthcoming Cool Men and the Second Sex: Reading Left Intellectuals.

25 Thus, at its most sublime, feeling is the vehicle by which one may discover and exercise a will beyond and against one’s natural, self-serving inclination. qxd 12/26/01 10:45 Page 29 What Feels an American? ”27 And it is the affectionate will by which Edwards himself overcomes his intellectual “objections against the doctrine of God’s sovereignty, in choosing whom he would to eternal life, and rejecting whom he pleased,” and discovers in place of these objections “not only . . ”28 The most striking and significant contrast between Edwards’s “Personal Narrative” and Franklin’s autobiography is the pervasiveness of the language of emotional and sensory experience in the former and its virtual absence, except as an object (lesson) of containment, in the latter.

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