This book examines the linguistic and discursive mechanisms that realize the mythological American Alpha Male. Providing an in-depth dissection of corpora from an online socio-commercial community, a pop-psychology guru, and fictional gay erotica, it unravels the ways language, gender, and hegemony play out in this ideological figure of neopositive, essentialist masculinity. Through a detailed, multi-level analysis, Russell shows how the Alpha figure combines elements of dominance, normativity, and androcentrism and how these forces intersect with neoliberal and pseudoscientific discourses to establish a uniquely hybridized male hegemony, one that is familiar to most, but whose internal mechanisms remain largely unquestioned and unexamined. This book will be of interest to academic scholars in sociolinguistics, discourse analysis, cultural studies, and gender and sexualities studies.
Chapter 1: Stumbling into Alpha.- Chapter 2: Masculinities, Language, and the Alpha Male.- Chapter 3: The Evidentiary Base of Alpha Male Discourse.- Chapter 4: Enlanguaging Alpha: Making Reality by Making Language.- Chapter 5: Representing Alpha: The Forms of Male Hegemony.- Chapter 6: Constructing Alpha: Structures of Hegemony.- Chapter 7: Discourses of Alpha: Strategies and the Hegemonic Order.- Chapter 8: Men, Militarism, and Disruption.
Eric Louis Russell is a Professor in the Department of French & Italian and affiliated with the Department of Linguistics and the Program in Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies at the University of California, Davis. His research looks at the linguistic foundations and discursive practices of masculinities, sexualities, and sociocultural animus.
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