Maintenance of hegemonic masculinity in online heavy metal spaces

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference abstract


This paper will examine hegemonic modes of masculinity that exist in online heavy metal spaces. My aim is to provide a survey of the way in which meanings of masculinity and gender identity more broadly are maintained. I seek to highlight how technology associated with social media has made hegemonic masculinity more visible in groups of heavy metal fans who participate in online heavy metal forums. In this research I seek to show the existence of a hegemonic collective that is reified through a process of ‘othering’ similar to that seen in offline spaces. However, in the case of online social spaces the visibility of hegemonic masculinity arises in the form of user-generated content such as images, text, and forum design which are then recorded for indefinite periods. This visual record, through the design of online technology, remains documented in these spaces and serves to reify this hegemony. Participant observation research conducted in two online heavy metal spaces will be used to highlight how the maintenance of hegemonic masculinity is carried out by two separate and distinct online heavy metal fan groups. I will also draw parallels between the maintenance of this hegemony and the amplification of gender binaries in online space, as they show that gender identity in these social spaces is based on heteronormative assumptions.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationKeep it simple, make it fast! DIY cultures, spaces and places
Subtitle of host publicationbook of abstracts
EditorsPaula Guerra, Andy Bennett
Place of PublicationPorto, Portugal
PublisherUniversidade do Porto
Number of pages1
ISBN (Print)9789898648785
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Externally publishedYes
EventKeep it Simple Make it Fast! DIY Cultures, Spaces and Places: DIY Cultures, Spaces and Places - Universidade do Porto, Faculdade de Letras, Porto, Portugal
Duration: 12 Jul 201615 Jul 2016
Conference number: 3


ConferenceKeep it Simple Make it Fast! DIY Cultures, Spaces and Places
Abbreviated titleKISMIF


  • gender
  • heavy metal
  • masculinity
  • social media


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