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The construction of masculinity in the Spanish labour movement: Astudy of the Revista Blanca (1923–36)

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Abstract:

This article places discourse on masculinity in the anarchist Revista Blanca (1923–36) within the broader setting of the Spanish labour movement and recent feminist and gender analyses of 'hegemonic' and 'subordinate' expressions of maleness. Rather than supposing a rigid representation of masculinity, anarchist writers in the Revista Blanca posed several models although these models conformed to certain criteria and were characterized by their adherence to notions of working-class dignity, political integrity and values of truth as weapons against bourgeois 'double standards' and privilege. Such expressions of masculinity also inhered in particular constructions of femininity within the review and the movement more broadly. In turn, 'dissident' expressions of masculinity, seen as overly aesthetic, effeminate or even homosexual, were rejected. While engaging with new tropes of masculinity emerging in the early twentieth century and providing models that broke with some dominant forms of masculinity, writers in the Revista Blanca also shored up boundaries between the genders and sexes. This article makes a contribution to work on anarchist history, labour history and the history of gendered relations.

Keywords: Revista Blanca; Spanish anarchism; effeminacy; hegemonic masculinity; homosexuality; masculinity; subordinate masculinity

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1386/ijis.24.3.201_1

Affiliations: University of Leeds

Publication date: 2012-05-26

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  • The International Journal of Iberian Studies (IJIS) is the academic journal for scholars from around the world whose research focuses on contemporary Spain and Portugal from a range of disciplinary perspectives. IJIS is interested in history (20th century onwards), government and politics; foreign policy and international relations.
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