Masculinities on Clydeside: Men in Reserved Occupations during the Second World War

TitleMasculinities on Clydeside: Men in Reserved Occupations during the Second World War
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2016
AuthorsChand, Alison
Number of Pages163
PublisherEdinburgh University Press

Did the Second World War represent a catalyst for social change in Britain? What was the impact on masculinity of being in reserved employment? And how were experiences of war in a specific British region different and unique?This volume explores the experiences of civilian men on Clydeside during the war, using oral history interviews as a means to explore subjectivity and arguing for continuous personal agency through major historical changes. While men in reserved occupations are understood as extensively influenced by 'imagined' discourses, often resulting in feelings of guilt and emasculation, their subjectivities were nonetheless ultimately rooted in their 'lived' and immediate local vicinities, and the people and places of their everyday lives. This ultimate relevance of lived existence and the everyday also meant that while wartime relations between men and women were clearly shaped by a range of gender discourses and continually renegotiated, gender boundaries were never fixed or truly separate. The analysis looks at wider subjectivities, encompassing national and political identities, class consciousness, religious subjectivities and social activities, as well as examining women's experiences of working in reserved occupations in wartime and their interactions with civilian men. 

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