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Across intergenerational masculinities: straight divisions, gay multiplications

Ian Davis (Association of Qualitative Research & The Griffith Institute of Educational Research, Griffith University, Brisbane, Australia)
Mark Vicars (School of Education, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia)

Qualitative Research Journal

ISSN: 1443-9883

Article publication date: 6 May 2014




The purpose of this paper is to present two examples how stories and storying can be utilised to excavate forgotten points and junctures that result as fundamental episodes in the forming of the subjective selves. Writing in-between masculinity and queerness both stories trace the experience of two boys through accounts of initiation and subjection.


Using autobiography as a method, in concert with Deleuzian-Guattarian notions of becoming and becoming other the paper explores how the discovery of subjective difference informs how the work of identity making and survival take place.


What is uncovered in the process of the paper is how we learn the disguises needed for survival through an early encounter away from the dominating and into the dominated. In this process of becoming other strategies are designed to disguise difference and avoid detection.

Social implications

The gaps and fissures that exist between intergenerational positions in conjunction with the straight/gay sexuality binary provide the environment within which the paper operates. Through personal biography the paper investigates how this structure informs the subjective positionality and the identity construction.


The openness of the writing found in both of these accounts, although clearly a narrative construction, are also akin to a stream of remembering or spontaneous prose writing. The accounts themselves are not heavily edited; they have not been figured and refigured to produce pleasing literary effects. Instead they remain raw utilising narrative tropes such as flash-back and dramaturgy simply as conduits to memory. The tropes that are employed could be read as defensive or distancing mechanism, a protection against the capacity of the unfolding lived experience to disturb and disrupt.



Davis, I. and Vicars, M. (2014), "Across intergenerational masculinities: straight divisions, gay multiplications", Qualitative Research Journal, Vol. 14 No. 1, pp. 79-88.



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