After the Wedding Night: The Confluence of Masculinity and Purity in Married Life
Diefendorf, Sarah H.
MetadataShow full item record
Purity is congruent with cultural understandings of femininity, but incongruent with normative definitions of masculinity. Using longitudinal qualitative data, this study analyzes interviews with men who have taken pledges of abstinence pre and post marriage, to better understand the ways in which masculinity is asserted within discourses of purity. Building off of Wilkins' concept of collective performances of temptation and Luker's theoretical framing of the "sexual conservative" I argue that repercussions from collective performances of temptation carry over into married life; sex is thought of as something that needs to be controlled both pre and post marriage. Second, because of these repercussions, marriage needs to be re-conceptualized as a "verb"; marriage is not a static event for sexual liberals or sexual conservatives. The current study highlights the ways in which married life is affected by a pledge of abstinence and contributes to the theoretical framing of masculinities as fluid.
- Sociology