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Caring, curing, and the community: Black masculinity in a feminized profession

Gender and Sexuality in the Workplace

ISBN: 978-1-84855-370-5, eISBN: 978-1-84855-371-2

Publication date: 14 September 2010


Men maintain advantages in “women's” professions in large part because masculinity retains higher status than femininity even in feminized jobs mostly filled by women. Thus, men in these jobs tend to perform masculinity in very traditional ways, and are generally rewarded with increased access to higher-status positions, often with the cooperation and approval of their women coworkers. Yet much of the research in this area has neglected to explore how race intersects with gender to shape the ways men perform masculinity when they are employed in professions where they do “women's work.” How do men of color perform masculinity in female-dominated jobs? Are they able to engage in the expressions of masculinity documented among their white counterparts? Based on semi-structured interviews with black men nurses, I argue that these men encounter gendered racism from colleagues, supervisors, and customers that impacts the ways they construct and perform masculinity.


Harvey Wingfield, A. (2010), "Caring, curing, and the community: Black masculinity in a feminized profession", Williams, C.L. and Dellinger, K. (Ed.) Gender and Sexuality in the Workplace (Research in the Sociology of Work, Vol. 20), Emerald Group Publishing Limited, Leeds, pp. 15-37.



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