When a Man’s Home Isn’t a Castle: Hegemonic Masculinity Among Men Experiencing Homelessness and Mental Illness
The theoretical construct of hegemonic masculinity facilitates analyses of how patriarchal systems influence gender performativity. There is little research on how hypermasculinity plays out in spaces where men are vulnerable; where exaggerated forms of physical strength, aggression, and emotional detachment are not easily expressed. This chapter considers the ways hegemonic masculinity is performed among men experiencing homelessness and who identify as mentally ill. Despite the limitations in being able to embody typically masculine traits, many men performed the hypermasculine role by blaming malignant women for their homeless status; demeaning women mental health professionals; and by minimizing the role of emotion work in their efforts to manage their distress. Conversely, there is a small but vocal counter-narrative of men who adopted a more complex understanding of masculinity.
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