Riktiga vänner och andra män: Äkthet, känslor och beröring i mäns vänskapsrelationer.
2016 (Swedish)In: Tidskrift för Genusvetenskap, ISSN 1654-5443, E-ISSN 2001-1377, Vol. 37, no 2, 77-98 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Feminist researchers have had an ambivalent relation to friendships between men.They have been seen as both threatening and promising, as relationships in which gendered power relations can be either reproduced or challenged. This article draws upon interviews with heterosexual men about their friendships with other men, and the role of emotional and physical closeness in these friendships. The interviewees distinguish between “real” and less real friendships, and argue that they are capable of recognizing and having “real” friendships. They see friendship as gendered, and argue that men in general have difficulties with friendship. Physical closeness, especially hugging, is also discussed. The interviewees distinguish between “real” hugs and back pat hugs, arguing that most men engage in the latter out of fear of closeness and homophobia, but that they themselves prefer the former kind of hug. These narratives are analysed as rhetorical tools making the interviewees stand out as exceptional in relation to other men, who are depicted as shallow or scared of getting close to male friends. By drawing on ideas about “real friendship” and authenticity, they position themselves as anti-homophobic and anti-laddish; as a certain kind of men, aware of gender constructions and different from various “Others”. The article highlights the construction of an anti-homophobic and anti-laddish masculine position in a contemporary Swedish context, focusing on ideas about friendship and authenticity. The interview is theorized as an arena for doing positioning work, where boundaries are drawn and categories are re/produced, one of which is the idea of “real” friendship, used for distinguishing between different kinds of men and relationships. The discussions about friendship are complex, as well as filled with longing for and envisionings of new kinds of friendships and intimacies between men.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2016. Vol. 37, no 2, 77-98 p.
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-272354OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-272354DiVA: diva2:893806