This article examines how everyday theories of masculinity and vernacular discourses of “masculinities in crisis” play crucial roles in misrecognizing, racializing, moralistically-depoliticizing, and class-displacing emergent social forces in the Middle East. Public discourses and hegemonic theories of male trouble render illegible the social realities of twenty-first-century multipolar geopolitics and the changing shapes of racialism, humanitarianism, nationalism, security governance, and social movement. In order to help generate new kinds of critical research on Middle East masculinities, this article creates a larger map of discourses and methods, drawing upon studies of coloniality and gender in and from the global South. This mapping puts masculinity studies into dialogue with critiques of liberalism and security governance and with work in postcolonial queer theory, public health studies, and feminist international relations theory.

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