Week 3. Nakamura Q2. Define Geek Masculinity
  • Lisa Nakamura does not go into much depth of what she means by the new form of patriarchal power, geek masculinity. What do you think are its defining characteristics?
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  • This is an interesting question in conjunction with the work @adelinekoh and I have been doing with the Rewriting Wikipedia Project. One of the issues for Wikipedia is that the body of editors is largely male and that, in turn, affects the knowledges represented and disseminated through Wikipedia. I'm not sure the defining characteristics of geek masculinity are as important as the effect it has on outcomes.  
  • and how does this all play out in relation to "Geek  Chic Femininity?"
  • @rrisam (and I am only responding to your comment that just popped up on my facebook feed - :) - not the whole thread - I haven't actually read the articles for the week yet - but am coming fresh out of a set of Femtechnet planning meetings around our nodal DOCC courses for Fall 2013 where we've been discussing wikistorming among other things). 

    While I agree with what you say in effect - I am uncomfortable with viewing digital ontologies in a way that reproduces the text/body binary. The result of the discursive/epistemic maleness that is visible on wikipedia (and much of academia at large even now) is not just a function of so-called male bodies (even if we can agree on what a male body is) record and represent as knowledge. There are broader socio-cultural and political discipline-ings at play that impact the labor forces and the sociality of online and offline work (and play) spaces - as well as organizational logics and hierarchies. Knowledge production is not disembodied but continues to be represented as such by all of us. We are implicated too.

    Geek masculinity and Geek Chic Femininities performatively viewed can allow us to see emerging formations of hierarchies in labor forces in present times.

    I realize I am not explaining as much as I would like to (arent we all always short of time?:)) - heading to the Fembot Unconference at Portland in a few hours and must go pack (hopefully some of the participants here are coming to that - or are following it - we are discussing related issues there too - see http://fembotcollective.org/blog/2013/07/06/draft-schedule-for-fembot-conference/)
  • @rrisam, why do you think defining geek masculinity is not as important as its effects on outcomes, eg on projects such as Wikipedia? The better one understands male privilege and masculinities in all its forms, the better one can engage with and/or dismantle them. Also, geek masculinity appears to emerge out of the long history of man as progress/woman as the unchanging/past, man as creator/woman as reproducer, and man as culture/woman as nature, which may seem like unhelpful binaries but still have plenty of power over scientific practice; fewer women recognised for their work in science and computing, women as insufficiently skilled in technology. But I appreciate the possible reasons why examining geek masculinity may be 'less important' than understanding what it does, namely because any kind of masculinity is shifting, contextual, and neither fully hegemonic nor subordinate.

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