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Soc. Sci. 2016, 5(1), 11; doi:10.3390/socsci5010011

Gender, Fitness Doping and the Genetic Max. The Ambivalent Construction of Muscular Masculinities in an Online Community

1
Department of Sport Science, Linnaeus University, SE-391 82 Kalmar, Sweden
2
Department of Education, Communication and Learning, University of Gothenburg, Box 300, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Martin J. Bull
Received: 22 December 2015 / Revised: 8 February 2016 / Accepted: 26 February 2016 / Published: 1 March 2016
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Abstract

This article is based on written accounts posted on an online forum called Flashback. The purpose of the study was to explore how participants in this community negotiated the meanings of fitness doping and how such negotiations could be understood in terms of masculinity. The findings indicate that the Internet community studied in this article can be read as an example of a transformational process in which ordinary rules are questioned and partly put out of play. In the world of the bodybuilder, the marginal masculinity is, in certain senses, dominant. On the one hand, achieving a muscular and well-trained body is regarded as a core aspect of manhood within the community. Marginal masculinity is thus momentarily transformed into dominant and hegemonic masculinity. On the other hand, however, the findings also indicate that a drug-using, muscular masculinity is constructed in negotiation with other central masculine ideals, such as the employable man and the responsible father. Found within the community is a complex and dynamic interplay between intersecting discourses of manhood. View Full-Text
Keywords: online communities; fitness doping; illicit drug use; bodybuilding; masculinity online communities; fitness doping; illicit drug use; bodybuilding; masculinity
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Andreasson, J.; Johansson, T. Gender, Fitness Doping and the Genetic Max. The Ambivalent Construction of Muscular Masculinities in an Online Community. Soc. Sci. 2016, 5, 11.

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