Date Thesis Awarded

5-2014

Document Type

Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelors of Arts (BA)

Department

Gender, Sexuality & Women's Studies

Advisor

Leisa D. Meyer

Committee Member

Laurie J. Wolf

Committee Member

Victoria Castillo

Abstract

The adolescent clubhouse, the fraternity and the military are all critical spaces that frame and nurture the normative masculine gender script, and therefore the assumption and replication of a hegemonic masculinity. Because hegemonic masculinities are so intricately woven into the fibers of the United States military and the American fraternity, these organizations and the rich traditions that compose their histories and inform their practices and ideologies, are the focus of this study. I argue that these two spaces normalize, sustain, promote and replicate rape culture by requiring members’ performance of hegemonic masculinity. Members’ performance of a hegemonic masculinity contributes to their subscription to a culture of rape. Both groups are structured, historically and currently, through the lens of brotherhood and the tie of the fraternal bond. Each organization places intense value on group dynamics and unified identities, which, in turn, limit members’ ability to express views or masculinities that are non-normative or that differ from those of the group or organization at large.