Christian Vaccaro and co-author Melissa Swauger recently published their book Unleashing Manhood in the Cage: Masculinity and Mixed Martial Arts. Through a captivating and novel approach, Vaccaro and Swauger detail the symbolism and experiences behind mixed martial arts and its participants, while linking it to mixed masculinities and manhood acts.
Their book delves into the gender constructs, ideologies, and expressions associated with masculinity through the lens of mixed martial arts. Vaccaro and Swauger present the question, “Why do mixed martial arts participants endure grueling workouts and suffer through injury, with little or no pay, just to compete?”
Through their research, they have concluded that mixed martial artists experience a form of idolization that is promoted through their performance and status; this idolization comes from their supporters, themselves, and the general culture. Vaccaro and Swauger suspect that the sport of mixed martial arts doubles as a social space that enables the formation of gender and ideologies of masculinity, as well as manhood.
More information regarding the book and how to make a purchase.