Transforming cowboy masculinity into appropriate masculinity
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Criminological enquiry commonly overlooks the gendered aspects of the social control of men. By studying a protective school for boys with a gender perspective, I have found that controlling boys to a great extent means controlling masculinity. In my study, I have analysed empirical material from Foldin protective school (1953–1970). Through an analysis of the narratives about the boys employed by the school and other social support and control systems, I aim to uncover the masculinity discourses that shaped the school’s work. Is a well-documented fact in criminology that those who are registered as criminals and subjected to social control in the form of court orders and custody by the child welfare services, predominantly are working class boys (Willis 1977, Christie 1982, Mattsson 2005). My analysis of Foldin’s effort to form a proper boy is therefore also an analysis of a class-specific masculinity discourse.