Masculinity studies have developed as an inherently interdisciplinary project since beginning in the 1970s. As part of broader growth, scholarship has devoted much time and energy to understanding and questioning the concept that boys are in crisis. Some scholars argue that masculinity has been synonymous with discourses of crisis since the 1700s, as a focus on unattainable ideals leads to anxiety about failure. These discourses persist but are certainly not the dominant way in which masculinity is learned in cultural pedagogies of gender. To a great extent, masculinity is largely taught and learned through embodied and symbolic sets of practices that take place in a range of places and are distributed across often quite complex networks. Online and offline, between generations, cultures and classes, the gender performance that is popularly recognized as ‘masculinity’ is fluid in the different ways it can embody or represent courage, leadership, protectiveness, strength, power, control and command.
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