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Journal Cover Journal of Extreme Anthropology
  [2 followers]  Follow
  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
   ISSN (Print) 2535-3241
   Published by Extreme Anthropology Research Network Homepage  [1 journal]
  • Extreme Losers: On Excess and Profitless Expenditure in Male Gambler

    • Authors: Marco Pedroni
      Abstract: The essay looks at male gambling by investigating it as a form of resistance to the utilitarian values which lie at the base of the market logic. Here the excess is viewed as a central notion in opposition to that of utility. Far from minimising the negative impact of excessive gambling on society and individuals, this contribution attempts to go beyond an analysis based on the categories of pathology and expenditure only. Through excess, the pathological gambler unveils the symbolic and arbitrary ideology of capitalism which sees economic success as a sign of election or a choice whereby money is used not as an investment or to access to goods and services, but “wasted”.To address these issues, two complementary ethnographic methods are used: (1) a three-month ethnographic observation in 23 gambling locations in Milan’s metropolitan area; (2) 10 in-depth interviews with extreme male gamblers.The article attempts to answer the following research question: How does excess take place in male gambling practices' Risk factors for extreme gambling are analysed, with a particular focus on the relationship between gambling and masculinity. In the effort to go beyond an analysis of gambling based on the categories of pathology and expenditure only, gambling is conncetd to the notion of excess. Gambling locations as facilitators of excess are studied, and the life stories of pathological gamblers discussed. The paradoxical ambivalence of gambling practices, on the one side a form of domination of the subordinate classe, on the other an opportunity to resist through an anti-utilitarian act, are highlighted.
      PubDate: 2017-11-22
  • Man or Monster' On the Banality of Evil

    • Authors: Mathew A Varghese
      Abstract: Book review of Man or Monster' The Trial of a Khmer Rouge Torturer by Alexander Laban Hinton, Durham N.C.: Duke University Press, 2016.
      PubDate: 2017-11-03
  • Masculinities under Neoliberalism

    • Authors: Henrik Hvenegaard Mikkelsen
      Abstract: Book Review of 'Masculinities under Neoliberalism',Cornwall, Andrea, Karioris, Frank G. and Lindisfarne, Nancy (Eds.) 2016. Masculinities under Neoliberalism. London: Zed Books.
      PubDate: 2017-11-01
  • Angels with Dirty Faces: Gosha Rubchinskiy and the Politics of Style

    • Authors: Graham Roberts
      Abstract: In many ways, twenty-first century Russia is the land par excellence of extreme masculinity. President Putin himself regularly indulges in spectacular performances of extreme masculinity, whether it be pledging to ‘bump off’ Chechen terrorists in their ‘shithouses’, swimming in ice-cold Siberian lakes, or posing in the pilot’s seat of a supersonic strategic bomber. Men’s fashion and fashion imagery is one of the rare areas of Russian culture where the kind of masculinity embodied (in a literal sense) by Putin is still challenged, and indeed subverted. Perhaps the most interesting Russian men’s fashion designer working today, certainly the designer who has engaged most persistently with political change, is Gosha Rubchinskiy. In his work he foregrounds various ‘extreme’ forms of Russian masculinity, from the angelic youth at one end of the spectrum through the brown-shirted neo-fascist adolescent, to the shaven-headed football fan at the other end. He does so, he maintains, in order to change the way Russia is perceived in the world. Indeed, if Dostoevsky once claimed that ‘beauty will save the world,’ Rubchinskiy self-consciously enlists what he refers to as the ‘beauty’ of his models in an attempt to challenge the negative image of Russia generated by western media as part of what he has called an ‘informational [sic] war’ against his native country. Borrowing concepts from Bakhtin (the chronotope, carnival) and Foucault (heterotopia), I examine Rubchinskiy’s extreme masculinities, and the questions they raise about masculinity, about the cultural relationship between Russia and the West, fashion as a discrete cultural practice, and the place and role of the fashion designer in society.
      PubDate: 2017-10-30
  • Declining to Decline: Aged Tough Guys in 'The Expendables' and
           'The Expendables 2'

    • Authors: Lisa-Nike Bühring
      Abstract: Old age in western cultures under current neo-liberal ideology is increasingly linked to notions of decline, frailty and dependence as it is often equated with being unproductive and a burden to society. This case study is based on the belief that in order to change socio-cultural patterns one must first understand them. Consequently, this article aims to analyse the socio-cultural (re)production of narratives of ageing in general and particularly of narratives of male ageing – a topic often neglected in academic debates of ageing.Mass media represent today a major source for the development and maintenance of hegemonic socio-cultural standards.  As such their products need to be taken seriously even if their content might seem superficial and frivolous. A critical analysis of the commercially highly successful Hollywood action films The Expendables and The Expendables 2 will shed light on the cultural narratives of male ageing revealed in the two films and subsequently support a better understanding of the strategies used to transform narratives of decline commonly linked to ageing into stories of success and progress.
      PubDate: 2017-10-04
  • Revenge of the Nerds: Recidivist Masculinity, Identity Politics and the
           Online ‘Culture Wars’

    • Authors: Udith Dematagoda
      Abstract:  This paper is longform commentary and analysis of Angela Nagle's recent work Kill All Normies Online culture wars from 4chan and Tumblr to Trump and the alt-right. It explores the work's relevance to 'Extreme Masculinties', and places it within the context of the contemporary poltiical situation. The work's main thesis on the aesthetic and libidinal forms and characteristics of the 'Alt-Right' are heavily interrogated and placed within the historical context of previous 'crises' in masculinity. This analysis proceeds to further explore the existence of this contemporary crisis through the broader spectrum of identity politics, and its problematic ideological conflicts and consequences. 
      PubDate: 2017-10-03
  • Facehunting: Empathy, Masculinity and Violence among the Bugkalot

    • Authors: Henrik Hvenegaard Mikkelsen
      Abstract: This article discusses how anthropological explorations of empathy can be enriched through a focus on transgression. Empathy is commonly understood as a human capacity that allows a person to share the feelings of others through some form of mental engagement. Thereby, it is believed, empathy establishes compassionate relationships between people and prevents violence from breaking out. In this article, I suggest that the opposite may be the case: that, in fact, empathy may be the very foundation for acts of radical violence and killings. The ethnographic basis of my inquiry is research conducted among the Bugkalot (Ilongot) of northern Philippines on the practice of headhunting. I propose that empathy is what allows violence to achieve its transformative capacity. Furthermore, I seek to show how understanding headhunting as “murder” may disclose how this particular act is tied to masculine ideals of autonomy. Headhunting, I argue, targets not the head but the “face”, that is, it strikes at the very fulcrum of the ethical relation and the foundation of empathy. 
      PubDate: 2017-09-19
  • Burhan Wani and the Masculinities of the Indian State

    • Authors: Fabian Alexander Hartwell
      Abstract: Burhan Wani, the ‘pin-up boy’ of Kashmiri separatism was shot dead by Indian Special Forces in July 2016. Wani, a commander for Kashmir-based militant outfit Hizbul Mujahideen, was popular on social media for his advocacy against Indian rule in Kashmir and his calls suggesting violent insurrection against the Indian state. As a Kashmiri Muslim, Wani was doubly marginalised by the dominant Hinduised space of the imagined Indian nation; his reactive masculinity directly challenged the Hindu bravado he encountered in the state-sanctioned hyper-masculinity exemplified by the Indian Armed Forces. The article is inspired by the theoretical contributions of Jasbir Puar and Sudhir Kakar, who argue that the heteronormativity of society is produced through the homosexual and that the Hindu is constituted through the Muslim Other. Furthermore, utilizing Dibyesh Anand’s critical conceptualization of Indian nationalism as ‘porno nationalism’, the article argues that the way the Muslim is constituted is by fetishisation of the Muslim body as ‘hypersexed’, ‘abnormal’ and often criminal. Wani’s masculinity and his public representation constitute a nexus between the technological advancement that enables growing linkages between elements of the global jihad, the emergence of a transnational jihadi culture and him as a role model for young men, whose class and religious identity is superseded by the irredentist claims of the freedom fighter. Refocusing our attention from the superstructures of global masculine posturing to localized, individual experiences of violence, this article aims to reposition Wani, and Muslims, as integral to the masculinities of the Indian State.
      PubDate: 2017-08-10
  • Cockfighting in Venezuela: Capitalist Paroxysm within a State Controlled

    • Authors: Henry Moncrieff Zabaleta
      Abstract:  In 2014 in Guasipati, an agricultural and cattle town in Southeastern Venezuela, I witnessed a group of men of all generations who staged themselves through the orgasmic rite of cockfights. In Geertz's famous ethnography of cockfighting in Bali, the ‘irrationality’ of betting appears at first as surprising. But cockfighting is a game that dramatizes status and tests group solidarity, it is a measure of moral import and of meaning. This photographic record of masculinities at play in cockfighting builds on Geertz’ interpretation. The images were taken in the gallera (cockpit) of Guasipati during a clandestine night. It is here that the participating men engage in a form of capitalist communication that directly questions the Bolivarian Revolution. Many are workers within socialist enterprises, and they tremendously enjoy this illegal and transgressive activity. Within this space, the patterns of exchange become competitive and inscribed in subterranean capitalist circuits, evoking a symbolism of masculine power disputes (who is a man and who not) vis-à-vis the prohibitions of socialism. It is here that illegal enrichment that serves as a source and mark of status within the state controlled economy is effectively played out. Behind the  individual and collective euphoria seen in the photographs, there are even more euphoric social tensions of betting and status at work.
      PubDate: 2017-04-14
  • The Rise of the Right: English Nationalism and the Rise of the Working
           Class by Simon Winlow, Steve Hall and James Treadwell

    • Authors: Tereza Kuldova
      PubDate: 2017-03-01
School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences
Heriot-Watt University
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