The purpose of this paper is to explore the intersection of gender, sexuality and occupation and to analyse how male cabin crew utilize space in managing gender identity.
The paper draws on a project where interviews were conducted with 17 male cabin crew, all aged < 35 years, from 5 different airlines in airports in the South East of England. The crew worked in a mixture of short-haul, low-cost and long-haul global carriers.
The paper shows how men in a feminized service role negotiate masculine subjectivities within and through space and how gendered meanings attached to space can impress on and both challenge and be challenged by the performances and subjectivities of individuals within them.
The findings on which the paper is based surface the diverse challenges facing men in non-traditional roles – an area that would profit from further research in different contexts. Further, the findings have implications for work-based practices and employee relations within a paraprofessional service role.
The paper adds to the understanding of how gender and identity intersect as well as to how space, seen as both gendered and gendering, is implicated in the processes involved.
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