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Open AccessArticle

Reconceptualising the Gender of Fitness Doping: Performing and Negotiating Masculinity through Drug-Use Practices

Department of Sport Science, Linnaeus University, Kalmar SE-391 82, Sweden
Academic Editor: Martin J. Bull
Soc. Sci. 2015, 4(3), 546-562; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci4030546
Received: 28 May 2015 / Revised: 15 July 2015 / Accepted: 3 August 2015 / Published: 6 August 2015
This article analyses self-portrayals and gender constructions among Swedish male bodybuilders who are engaged in fitness doping. The empirical material comes from a larger ethnographic investigation into gym culture. The results show that there is a strong propensity to conform with particular gender fantasies that rests heavily on a binary understanding of gendered, doped bodies. However, this storyline does not apprehend the entire self-presentation of the analysed drug users. Negotiations and inclusive subversions of traditional gender norms are also expressed. For example, the narratives show how the use of performance-enhancing substances makes it possible for (heterosexual) men to approach, touch and express feelings of desire towards other men and their bodies. As such, this practice can be viewed as a contestation of hegemonic gender values, in which masculinity and fitness doping are detached from a quite heterosexist understanding, and turned into a symbolic world of homoerotic pleasure. View Full-Text
Keywords: masculinity; sexuality; health; body; fitness doping; gym culture masculinity; sexuality; health; body; fitness doping; gym culture
MDPI and ACS Style

Andreasson, J. Reconceptualising the Gender of Fitness Doping: Performing and Negotiating Masculinity through Drug-Use Practices. Soc. Sci. 2015, 4, 546-562.

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