Masculinities at Work

76 Pages Posted: 10 Apr 2009

See all articles by Ann McGinley

Ann McGinley

University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law

Date Written: 2004


This article focuses on the study of masculinities, a body of theoretical and empirical work by sociologists, feminist theorists and organization management theorists. This work, much of which employment law scholars have ignored, studies the role of masculinities, which are often invisible, in creating structural barriers to the advancement of many women and some men at work. Masculinities comprise both a structure that reinforces the superiority of men over women and a series of practices, associated with masculine behavior, performed by men or women, that aid men to maintain their superior position over women. In their less visible form, masculinities reinforce stereotypes of the proper role and behavior of women and men at work. Some of these practices include aggression, competitiveness, informal networking, and regarding women as sexual objects, caregivers or Aggressive bitches. These practices harm women at work, permitting powerful heterosexual white men to define what work is, while denying that the workplace is gendered.

Keywords: masculinities, masculinity, discrimination, employment, labor, work, sex discrimination, gender, stereotypes

JEL Classification: J70, J71, J78, J79, K10, K19, K31

Suggested Citation

McGinley, Ann, Masculinities at Work (2004). Oregon Law Review, Vol. 83, No. 359, 2004, Available at SSRN:

Ann McGinley (Contact Author)

University of Nevada, Las Vegas, William S. Boyd School of Law ( email )

4505 South Maryland Parkway
Box 451003
Las Vegas, NV 89154
United States

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