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[Pn. 7] Embodying Dominance and Submission with Male Bodies: The Impact of Gender Subjectivity on Body Image and Body Performance

19 October 2013


The majority of research on gendered bodily experiences has focused primarily on the socio-cultural influences on the female body. Although the focus of research on bodily experiences has primarily focused on women, in recent years there has been an increased focus on men’s bodily experiences, specifically in regards to gay and bisexual men. This qualitative research study examines the bodily experiences of gay and bisexual men surrounding gender and sexuality. The purpose of this study is to explore the ways in which gay men embody, negotiate, or resist bodily expectations of gender and sexuality. A number of sociological, feminist, and queer theoretical perspectives will be considered. Thirty-seven individuals from diverse racial, ethnic, religious, educational and socioeconomic backgrounds participated in this study. The results of this study indicated that most gay men actively and consciously embody socio-cultural bodily expectation pertaining to gender and sexuality. Furthermore the results of this study indicated that a minority of gay men actively and knowingly manages to negotiate or resist gendered and sexualized bodily expectations.


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