Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-55597f9d44-rn2sj Total loading time: 0.364 Render date: 2022-08-09T04:55:26.243Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "useRatesEcommerce": false, "useNewApi": true } hasContentIssue true

The Car, the Hammer and the Cables under the Tables

Intersecting Masculinities and Social Class in a Swiss Vocational School

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 August 2017

Joëlle Moret
Affiliation:
Université de Neuchâtel [joelle.moret@unine.ch]
Kerstin Dümmler
Affiliation:
Institut fédéral des hautes études en formation professionnelle, Renens [Kerstin.Duemmler@iffp.swiss]
Janine Dahinden
Affiliation:
Université de Neuchâtel [janine.dahinden@unine.ch].
Get access

Abstract

Based on ethnographic material, this article explores how three groups of apprentices negotiate masculinities in the specific setting of a male-dominated vocational school in Switzerland dedicated to the building trades. We use an intersectional and relational perspective to highlight how the institutional setting of the school—mirroring wider social hierarchies—influences these young men’s identity work. The apprentices use three discursive dichotomies: manual vs. mental work; proud heterosexuality vs. homosexuality; and adulthood vs. childhood. However, the three different groups employ the dichotomies differently depending on their position in the school’s internal hierarchies, based on their educational path, the trade they are learning and the corresponding prestige. The article sheds light on the micro-processes through which existing hierarchies are internalised within an institution. It further discusses how the school’s internal differentiations and the staff’s discourses and behaviours contribute to the (re)production of specific classed masculinities, critically assessing the role of the Swiss educational system in the reproduction of social inequalities.

Résumé

Basé sur des données ethnographiques, cet article explore la manière dont trois groupes d’apprentis gèrent la production de masculinités dans un contexte spécifique : celui d’une école professionnelle suisse spécialisée dans les métiers de la construction et fréquentée essentiellement par des hommes. Une perspective intersectionnelle et relationnelle est mobilisée pour montrer comment le contexte institutionnel de l’école – qui reflète des hiérarchies sociales plus larges – influence le travail identitaire de ces jeunes hommes. Les apprentis utilisent trois dichotomies discursives : le travail manuel vs intellectuel ; une hétérosexualité fièrement affichée vs l’homosexualité ; l’âge adulte vs l’enfance. Cependant, les trois groupes emploient ces dichotomies différemment selon leur position dans les hiérarchies internes de l’école, basées sur leur cursus de formation, le métier qu’ils apprennent, et le prestige associé. L’article met en lumière les micro-processus par lesquels les hiérarchies existantes sont internalisées dans l’institution. Il aborde également comment les différentiations internes à l’école et les discours et comportements du personnel contribuent à la (re)production de masculinités de classe spécifiques, posant un regard critique sur le rôle du système éducatif suisse dans le reproduction des inégalités sociales.

Zusammenfassung

Ausgehend von ethnografischen Daten untersucht der Artikel, wie drei Gruppen von Lernenden Männlichkeit im spezifischen Kontext einer Schweizer Berufsschule verhandeln, in der hauptsächlich junge Männer verschiedene Bauberufe erlenen. Unsere intersektionale und relationale Perspektive zeigt, wie das institutionelle Schulsetting – das weitere gesellschaftliche Hierarchien widerspiegelt - die Identitätsarbeit der jungen Männer beeinflusst. Die Lernenden mobilisieren drei diskursive Dichotomien: manuelle vs. geistige Arbeit, stolz gezeigte Heterosexualität vs. Homosexualität, Erwachsensein vs. Kind sein. Allerdings gebrauchen die drei Gruppen diese Dichotomien unterschiedlich je nach ihrer Position in der Schulhierarchie, ihrem Bildungsweg, ihrem erlernten Beruf und dem damit verbundenen Prestige basiert. Der Artikel beleuchtet die Mikroprozesse, durch die in einer Institution bestehende Hierarchien internalisiert werden. Diskutiert wird ausserdem, wie die schulinternen Differenzierungen und das Verhalten und die Diskurse des Personals an der Reproduktion klassenspezifischer Männlichkeiten beteiligt sind, wobei das Schweizer Bildungssystem bei der Reproduktion sozialer Ungleichheiten einer kritischen Betrachtung unterzogen wird.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © A.E.S. 2017 

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

References

Abraham, John, 2008. “Back to the Future on Gender and Anti-School Boys: A Response to Jeffrey Smith”, Gender And Education, 20 (1): 89-94.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Atewologun, Doyin, Sealy, Ruth and Vinnicombe, Susan, 2016. “Revealing Intersectional Dynamics in Organizations: Introducing ‘Intersectional Identity Work’”, Gender, Work And Organization, 23 (3): 223-247.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Bilge, Sirma, 2009. “Smuggling Intersectionality into the Study of Masculinity: Some Methodological Challenges”, paper presented at Feminist Research methods: an international conference, University of Stockholm, 4–9 February 2009.
Bilge, Sirma and Denis, Ann, 2010. “Introduction: Women, Intersectionality and Diasporas”, Journal of Intercultural Studies, 31 (1): 1-8.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Boogaard, Brendy and Roggeband, Conny, 2010. “Paradoxes of Intersectionality: Theorizing Inequality in the Dutch Policy Force through Structure and Agency”, Organization, 17 (1): 53-75.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Charmaz, Kathy, 2006. Constructing Grounded Theory. A Practical Guide through Qualitative Analysis (London, Sage).
Choo, Hae Yeon and Ferree, Myra Marx, 2010. “Practicing Intersectionality in Sociological Research: A Critical Analysis of Inclusions, Interactions, and Institutions in the Study of Inequalities”, Sociological Theory, 28 (2): 129-149.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Collinson, David and Hearn, Jeff, 1996. “‘Men’ at ‘Work’: Multiple Masculinities/Multiple Workplaces” in Mac an Ghaill, M., ed., Understanding Masculinities: Social Relations and Cultural Arenas (Buckingham, Open University Press).Google Scholar
Connell, R. W. 1987. Gender and Power. Society, the Person and Sexual Politics (Cambridge, Polity Press).
Connell, R. W., 1989. “Cool Guys, Swots and Wimps: The Interplay of Masculinity with Education”, Oxford Review of Education, 15 (3): 291-303.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Connell, R. W., 2005a. “Growing up Masculine: Rethinking the Significance of Adolescence in the Making of Masculinities”, Irish Journal of Sociology, 14 (2): 11-28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Connell, R. W., 2005b. Masculinities (Berkeley/Los Angeles: California Press).Google Scholar
Connell, R. W. and Messerschmidt, James W., 2005a. “Hegemonic Masculinity: Rethinking the Concept”, Gender And Society, 19 (6): 829-859.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Connell, R. W. and Messerschmidt, James W., 2005b. “Hegemonic Masculinity. Rethinking the Concept”, Gender & Society, 19 (6): 829-859.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Crang, Mike and Cook, Ian, 2007. Doing Ethnographies (London, Sage).
Crenshaw, Kimberlé, 1991. “Mapping the Margins: Intersectionality, Identity Politics, and Violence against Women of Colour”, Stanford Law Review, 43: 1241-1299.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Falcon, Julie, 2016. “Les limites du culte de la formation professionnelle : comment le système éducatif suisse reproduit les inégalités sociales”, Formation emploi, 133: 35-53.Google Scholar
Flamigni, Elettra and Pfister-Giauque, Barbara, 2013. “Logiques de genre dans les représentations des enseignant.e.s en école professionnelle” in Morin-Messabel, C., ed., Filles/Garçons. Questions de genre, de la formation à l’enseignement (Lyon, Presses Universitaires de Lyon : 177-187).Google Scholar
Flick, Uwe, 2006. An Introduction to Qualitative Research, 3rd ed., [reprint.] ed. (London, Sage Publications).Google Scholar
Haywood, Christian and Mac an Ghaill, Mairtin, 1996. “Schooling Masculinities” in Mac an Ghaill, M., ed., Understanding Masculinities: Social Relations and Cultural Arenas (Buckingham, Open University Press).Google Scholar
Hearn, Jeff, 2011. “Neglected Intersectionalities in Studying Men: Age(Ing), Virtuality, Transnationality” in Lutz, H., Herrera Viva, M. T. and Supik, L., eds., Framing Intersectionality. Debates on a Multi-Faceted Concept in Gender Studies (Farnham/Burlington: Ashgate).Google Scholar
Hill Collins, Patricia, 1990. Black Feminist Thought: Knowledge, Consciousness, and the Politics of Empowerment (Boston, Unwin Hyman).
Holvino, Evangelina, 2010. “Intersections: The Simultaneity of Race, Gender and Class in Organization Studies”, Gender, Work And Organization, 17 (3): 248-277.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
hooks, bell, 1981. Ain’t I a Woman? Black Women and Feminism (Boston, South End Press).Google Scholar
Hupka-Brunner, Sandra, Sacchi, Stefan and Stalder, Barbara E., 2010. “Social Origin and Access to Upper Secondary Education in Switzerland: A Comparison of Company-Based Apprenticeship and Exclusively School-Based Programmes”, Swiss Journal of Sociology, 36 (1): 11-31.Google Scholar
Imdorf, Christian, Granato, Mona, Moreau, Gilles and Waardenburg, George, 2010. “Vocational Education and Training in Switzerland, France, Germany—Perspectives for Sociological Research”, Swiss Journal Of Sociology, 36 (1): 5-10.Google Scholar
Imdorf, Christian, Sacchi, Stefan, Wohlgemuth, Karin, Cortesi, Sasha and Schoch, Aline, 2014. “How Cantonal Education Systems in Switzerland Promote Gender-Typical School-To-Work Transitions”, Swiss Journal of Sociology, 40 (2): 175-196.Google Scholar
Kanter, Rosabeth Moss, 1977. Men and Women of the Corporation (New York, Basic Books).Google Scholar
Lamont, Michèle, 2000. The Dignity of Working Men: Morality and the Boundaries of Race, Class, and Immigration (Cambridge, Harvard University Press).Google Scholar
Lewis, Patricia and Simpson, Ruth, 2012. “Kanter Revisited: Gender, Power and (In)Visibility”, International Journal of Management Reviews, 14: 141-158.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lucas, Kristen, 2011. “Blue-Collar Discourses of Workplace Dignity: Using Outgroup Comparisons to Construct Positive Identities”, Management Communication Quarterly, 25 (2): 353-374.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lupton, Ben, 2000. “Maintaining Masculinity: Men who do ‘Women’s Work’”, British Journal of Management, 11: 33-48.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mairtin, Mac An Ghaill, 1994. The Making of Men: Masculinities, Sexualities and Schooling (Buckingham, Open University Press).
Mac An Ghaill, Mairtin and Chris Haywood, 2011. “Schooling, Masculinity and Class Analysis: Toward an Aesthetic of Subjectivities”, British Journal of Sociology of Education 32 (5): 729-744.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Martin, Patricia Yancey, 2003. “‘Said and Done’ Versus ‘Saying and Doing’, Gendering Practices, Practicing Gender at Work”, Gender and Society, 17 (3): 342-366.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McCall, Leslie, 2005. “The Complexity of Intersectionality”, Signs, 30 (3): 1771-1800.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
McDowell, Linda, 2002. “Masculine Discourses and Dissonances: Strutting ‘Lads’, Protest Masculinity, and Domestic Respectability”, Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 20: 97-119.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Moller, Michael, 2007. “Exploiting Patterns: A Critique of Hegemonic Masculinity”, Journal of Gender Studies, 16 (3): 263-276.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Nash Jennifer, C., 2008. “Re-Thinking Intersectionality”, Feminist Review, (89): 1-15.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Ness, Kate, 2012. “Constructing Masculinity in The Building Trades: ‘Most Jobs In The Construction Industry Can Be Done By Women’”, Gender, Work and Organization, 19 (6): 654-676.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Oesch, Daniel. 2006. “Coming to Grips With a Changing Class Structure. An Analysis of Employement Stratification in Britain, Germany, Sweden and Switzerland”, International Sociology, 21 (2): 263-288.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Olivier De Sardan, Jean-Pierre, 1995. “La politique du terrain. Sur la production des données en anthropologie”, Enquête, 1: 71-109.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Pyke, Karen D., 1996. “Class-Based Masculinities. The Interdependence of Gender, Class, and Interpersonal Power”, Gender and Society, 10 (5): 527-549.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Simpson, Ruth, 2004. “Masculinity at Work: The Experiences of Men in Female Dominated Occupations”, Work, Employment and Society, 18 (2): 349-368.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Slutskaya, Natasha, Simpson, Ruth, Hughes, Jason, Simpson, Alexander and Uygur, Selçuk, 2016. “Masculinity and Class in the Context of Dirty Work”, Gender, Work and Organization, 23 (2): 165-182.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tajfel, Henri, 1981. Social Categorization, Social Identity and Social Comparison (Cambridge, Cambridge University Press).Google Scholar
Thiel, Darren, 2007. “Class in Construction: London Building Workers, Dirty Work And Physical Cultures”, The British Journal of Sociology, 58 (1): 227-251.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Tracy, Sarah J. and Scott, Clifton, 2006. “Sexuality, Masculinity, and Taint Management among Firefighters and Correctional Officers. Getting Down and Dirty with ‘America’s Heroes’ and the ‘Scum Of Law Enforcement’”, Management Communication Quarterly, 20 (1): 6-38.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Walby, Sylvia, Armstrong, Jo and Strid, Sofia, 2012. “Intersectionality: Multiple Inequalities in Social Theory”, Sociology, 46 (2): 224-240.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Whittock, Margaret, 2002. “Women’s Experiences of Non-Traditional Employment: Is Gender Equality in this Area a Possibility?”, Construction Management and Economics, 20 (5): 449-456.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Willis, Paul, 1977. Learning to Labour. How Working Class Kids get Working Class Jobs (Farnborough, Saxon House).Google Scholar
3
Cited by

Save article to Kindle

To save this article to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

The Car, the Hammer and the Cables under the Tables
Available formats
×

Save article to Dropbox

To save this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Dropbox account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

The Car, the Hammer and the Cables under the Tables
Available formats
×

Save article to Google Drive

To save this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you used this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your Google Drive account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

The Car, the Hammer and the Cables under the Tables
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response

Please enter your response.

Your details

Please enter a valid email address.

Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *