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Male Trouble

Male Trouble (Paperback)

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"Male Trouble" begins with the premise that "masculinity" is a troubled concept both historically and theoretically, one that needs exploration of its ambiguous status and its relation to feminism. Under the pressures of feminism, gay politics, and the AIDS crisis, and its political and cultural ramifications, masculinity as a construct is in a state of flux. In response to these changes, the popular media have come up with a variety of images of contemporary masculinity that, according to the editors, seem particularly organized around hysteria and masochism. In "Male Trouble", Penley and Willis insist that there are many masculinities and that what is monolithically described as male sexuality is in fact far more complicated. The essays in "Male Trouble" address this "troubled" masculinity through a wide range of voices and methods, from psychoanalysis to Marxism, sociology to deconstruction, from close readings of various texts to art history.

In detailed and provocative examinations of contemporary images of masculinity, including Pee-wee Herman and the characters of "thirtysomething", and in essays on the American male of the 1950s, the contributors have provided a thought-provoking, comprehensive study of masculinity in American culture today. Constance Penley is the author of "The Future of an Illusion: Film, Feminism, and Psychoanalysis" (Minnesota, 1989); editor of "Feminism and Film Theory"; and co-editor (with Andrew Ross) of "Technoculture" (Minnesota, 1991) and (with Elisabeth Lyon, Lynn Spigel, and Janet Bergstrom) of "Close Encounters: Film, Feminism, and Science Fiction" (Minnesota, 1991). Sharon Willis is the author of "Marguerite Duras: Writing on the Body". This book is intended for students and academics in the fields of media studies, gay and lesbian studies, women's studies.

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