Shifting Subjectivities and the Crafting of a Private Masculinity
The chapter introduces the first of the main four informants that will be discussed in detail in the book. Rohullah was born and raised in Kabul and had to relocate, while still a child, to a small provincial town due to the civil war raging in the country. There, his performance of masculinity was considered inadequate by his peers, and he had to learn the hard way how to reshape himself as a worthy and culturally appropriate masculine man, in order to avoid being violently bullied. His story is about the creation, and pragmatic utilization, of multiple subjectivities (or “selves”), complementary and not necessary antagonistic to each other. The chapter will provide evidence of how these multiple subjectivities stand in dissociated spaces in relation to each other, and still unconsciously in communication with each other. Rohullah makes successful use of this unconscious dialogue to shift from a condition of subordinated and discriminated masculinity to one of hegemonic masculinity, necessary to survive socially and physically in a punishing environment.
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