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Masculinities at Leisure

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Chapter Summary

This chapter investigates the leisure practices of men in contemporary China. This is a vast and expanding topic: in the reform era, the state's withdrawal from organizing communal non-worktime activities; its facilitation of consumerism, privatization and individualization; and the growing wealth of Chinese consumers have enabled proliferating forms of leisure to emerge, and engaging in them, as seen, enables men to construct a particular masculine status. The chapter demonstrates that there are multiple motivations for leisure activities. It hopes to make clear that the ideas and activities that come together to form the leisure worlds of Chinese men are drawn from circulating and situated discursive practices; that these ideas and activities are not exclusive to leisure time but also inform the work and home lives of men; and that subjective understandings of personal manliness forged through leisure activities are often articulated in rhetorical terms of seamlessness and wholeness.

Keywords: contemporary China; leisure practices; masculine status



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