Sambia Social Interaction Essay

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The social gathering starts after midnight in one of the several exclusively male bachelor homes in this community. These homes called “frats” are where groups of young men between the ages of 17 to 22 live. Similarly, there are also female only residences in the community but since only males are allowed to host these particular events, I will describe the interactions between genders in this particular setting. The loud music in this gathering makes it difficult to have conversations as a result of which I observe that people interact with each other primarily through physical actions. Moving to the beat of the music, I see two women dance with each other and then kiss on the dance floor. This sexual interaction between…show more content…
This rapid competitive drinking seems to be a masculine act that garners a positive reaction from the men participating. Among the men at the gathering, I observe no male counterpart to the previously described same-sex interaction between the women. Kulick’s paper shows that gendered ideas of sexuality and masculinity are highly contextual. In Kulick’s study of gender in the Brazilian travesti community, the masculinity of a male-gendered person is not threatened by sexual contact with another male as long as they are the ones performing the act of penetration (Kulick 574). In the context of a Brazilian society, the act of being penetrated by a person equates to “an unmasculine passive position” (Kulick 574). In every society, certain acts and interactions are culturally classified. Due to the absence of close same-sex interactions and dancing between males at this gathering, masculinity in the social context of this "frat" is possibly undermined by such same-sexed interactions. In both societies, as discussed by West and Zimmerman, the perception of gender seems to be a function of interactions that people use to maintain membership in a sex category(West and Zimmerman 127). Here, gender is portrayed by "doing"(West and Zimmerman 129) certain things like competitive drinking and also by not "doing" (West and Zimmerman 129) certain things

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