RACE AND MASCULINITIES IN THE SOUTH AFRICAN MILITARY

  • Nyameka Mankayi

Abstract

Generally, the military and masculinity are confirmed as harmonious andmutual. For many countries, military service assumes the status of initiation intomanhood. In South Africa, for example, in the past, young white men were legallyobliged to do military service. This emphasises the importance of focusing on whitemasculinities within the South African military in this article. Strong parallels with10 African2 male soldiers who also underscored hegemonic masculinity are drawn.The construction of masculinity of young male soldiers is discussed historically andin the present context. Transcriptions of semi-structured interviews with soldiersdrawn from a total of 14 participants were qualitatively analysed and are presentedto illustrate the themes that emerged in the interviews. The findings suggest that themilitary encompasses masculine characteristics and defines soldiering as anembodiment of traditional male sex practices. This article concludes that militarycontext and culture exaggerate and emphasise hegemonic masculinity andheterosexuality for male soldiers.
Published
2011-08-10
How to Cite
Mankayi, N. (2011). RACE AND MASCULINITIES IN THE SOUTH AFRICAN MILITARY. Scientia Militaria - South African Journal of Military Studies, 38(2). https://doi.org/10.5787/38-2-88
Section
Articles