• Linguistic Variation and Change (Edinburgh Sociolinguistics)
    Linguistic Variation and Change (Edinburgh Sociolinguistics)
    by Scott F. Kiesling
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Language and Masculinities

My dissertation work focused on gender identity, particularly on masculinity. This work is important because, rather than investigating how marginalized or subordinate groups create identity in society, I ask how dominant groups create identity. Because part of the power of these groups is based on their invisibility or assumed normativity, this project is considerably difficult. Nevertheless, I believe I have seen the outlines of how such a theoretical approach is possible, beginning in my dissertation but evolving and developing over the years since. In those years, I have examined other aspects of the fraternity men's identities, by investigating how they display race (whiteness) and sexuality (heterosexuality). I have also focused on diversity among the men, and I have shown what kind of diversity there is in the men's identities, and even on how a single man creates diverse versions of a masculine identity.

I also wrote a paper about the address term Dude, which garnered a bit of press in 2004.

Publications on masculinities and language

2011. “Masculinities, desire, and discourse.” Gender and Language 5(2): 213-139.

2007. “Men, Masculinities, and Language.” Blackwell Linguistics and Language Compass 1,6: 653-673. DOI: 10.1111/j.1749-818X.2007.00035.x

2006. “Hegemonic Identity-making in Narrative.” In Discourse and Identity, Anna De Fina, Deborah Schiffrin & Michael Bamberg (eds.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. pp.261-287.

2005. “Homosocial Desire in Men’s Talk: Balancing and Recreating Cultural Discourses of Masculinity.” Language in Society 34,5: 695-727.

2004. “Dude.” American Speech. 79, 3: 281-305.
Reprinted (in press) in Men and Masculinities: Critical Concepts in Sociology, Stephen M. Whitehead (ed.), London: Routledge.

2001 “‘Now I Gotta Watch What I Say’: Shifting Constructions of Gender and Dominance in Discourse.” Journal of Linguistic Anthropology 11,2: 250-273

2001 “Stances of Whiteness and Hegemony in Fraternity Men’s Discourse” Journal of Linguistic Anthropology 11,1: 101-115.

1998 “Men’s Identities and Sociolinguistic Variation: The Case of Fraternity Men.” Journal of Sociolinguistics 2:1, 69-100.

1997 “Shifting Constructions of Gender in a Fraternity.” Working Papers in Language, Gender, and Sexism, 7,1: 53-96.

1997 “From the ‘Margins’ to the ‘Mainstream’: Gender Identity and Fraternity Men’s Discourse.” Women and Language, 20,1:13-17.