Monday, November 20, 2006

Fandom and masculinity

Despite my guilty conscious I am still reading Harper's. But I am way behind and so was just finishing up the August issue last night and skimming through the Findings section that is on the back page of each issue. Findings is a compilation of the results of various studies--some are quite scary, others amusing--and covers issues like the environment, disease, human behavior, etc.
Last night I read one on fan behavior, something that has piqued my interest lately. But this "finding" was somewhat obvious. I don't have the exact wording but I think my paraphrase is pretty accurate: Male spectators who act rowdy at sports events are compensating for their perceived lack of masculinity.
Someone did a study on that? Doesn't that seem pretty obvious? Men watching sports are often witnessing displays of hypermasculinity and the only way they can "compete" is by being hypermasculine in their fandom.
This is why I stopped going to men's professional hockey games (pre-strike)--the guys there are just crazy, and in their exuberance they spill beer on you.

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