My PhD research explores the ways in which White, middle-class men i.e., those at the locus of intersectional privilege, are responding to the recent visibility of various forms of privilege in public discourse.
The impact of movements such as #MeToo, Black Lives Matter and the subsequent public profile of White Privilege and unconscious bias have stripped away the invisibility of these normative, hegemonic identities. These public discourses are casting Whiteness and masculinity as socially unacceptable in their individual forms, and in their intersectional manifestation in the White, middle-class man.
In the theoretical work on privileged identities, invisibility has long been thought to be one of the prime mechanisms through which they maintain their hegemony. Using a Butlerian informed understanding of materialisation, embodiment and identity performances, my research seeks to understand the strategies White, middle-class men employ in their everyday talk to negotiate and deal with the risk to their privilege from holding a now visible and tainted identity.
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