Interrogating Hegemonic Masculinity: Analyzing Dadu's Role as a Victim in Tariq Rahman's Moustache
Keywords:Masculinity, honour, power, patriarchy, feudalism
The male facial adornment of a moustache has always been a symbol of flamboyant masculinity in many different cultures. This study aims to examine how such a seemingly innocuous item of male personal grooming can become an expression of Hegemonic Masculinity working to the detriment of not only men themselves but to society and humanity at large. Dadu is such a male character in a short story called Moustache by Tariq Rahman. This character is driven by his patriarchal setup to simulate masculinity by growing a bushy upturned moustache. To his sorrow, he learns that real power lies not in a moustache but in the supremacy of the patriarchal system which reinforces traditional gender roles stating that men should be strong and aggressive. This study brings this phenomenon under the lens of the theory of the archetypes of the mature masculine as postulated by Robert Moore and Douglas Gillette in King, Warrior, Magician, Lover: Rediscovering the Archetypes of the Mature Masculine (1991). The objective is to recognize the role of patriarchal systems in the formation of hegemonic masculinity and to work toward dismantling these systems in order to create a more inclusive and equitable society.
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