C.J. Pascoe is an expert on sexuality, masculinity, gender, transgender issues, and body image, especially related to youth. C.J. also studies the use of social media by LGBT and straight youth to police gender roles and body image. At the University of Oregon, C.J. is an associate professor of sociology and the director of undergraduate studies. C.J. is author of the book, "Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School."
Areas of Expertise (4)
Media Appearances (10)
Analysis: George H.W. Bush and the problem with thinking 'good guys' don't cross the line
USA Today print
"Because these guys inhabit an identity that we think of as a 'good guy' ... it makes it really hard for us, and for them, to reconcile behaviors of sexual assault with that identity," said Pascoe, who in 2015 co-authored the paper "Good Guys Don’t Rape."
Many people have an idea of a sexual offender as a man who is dominant and aggressive, Pascoe said. When the behavior comes from someone who doesn't fit that profile — for instance, a young boy or an old man — excuses come out in the form of cliches: "boys will be boys" or "that old flirt." But there is no typical profile of a sex offender, the non-profit Futures Without Violence wrote in 2013.
Sociology Professor Weighs In On Boy Scout's Decision To Welcome Girls
KJZZ, Phoenix Public Radio radio
Earlier this month, the Boy Scouts of America announced that girls will be welcomed into some scouting programs, including its Cub Scouts program in 2018. Individual, already-existing packs, will have the option to remain boys only. There has been some backlash to the announcement, but others believe it’s long past time to phase out or eliminate organizations that are limited to one gender or another. With me to talk about that is C.J. Pascoe, associate professor of sociology at the University of Oregon.
The Science of Sexism: Why Workplaces Are So Hard to Change
Live Science online
Companies don't talk about things such as masculinity and the role it plays in gender inequality, Pascoe told Live Science. But dominance over women is a "central part of the contemporary understanding of masculinity," and that extends beyond the workplace, she said.
"This is something that's threaded throughout a society, and that isn't limited to any one company or one school or any one family," Pascoe said.
In Western cultures, masculinity is predicated on dominance, both in terms of men dominating other men and dominating women, Pascoe said. Part of what men are doing when they talk over women, interrupt women or make sexist jokes is exercising their dominance over women to "prove" their own masculinity.
Homophobia linked to definition of masculinity
The Register-Guard OPINION print
To understand the persistence of some kinds of homophobia, we need to begin with discussions of masculinity and what it means to be a man. Here’s why.
In my research, I have found that much homophobic bullying is directed not at boys who identify as gay — although, to be sure, they do suffer harassment — but at boys who identify as straight. This kind of bullying has as much to do with shoring up definitions of masculinity as it does with understandings of sexuality, although of course the two are deeply related.
Men pay a steep price when it comes to masculinity
USA Today print
“We brutalize [males] and then tell them the tradeoff is you get to be in a more powerful position,” said CJ Pascoe, a professor at the University of Oregon and author of Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School.
Why some men harass women
The irony is that these self-satisfied viewers were engaging in a bit of chest-thumping themselves. So were some of the television pundits who couldn’t condemn Trump loudly enough as they endlessly replayed the clip. They were all displaying a central feature of American masculinity: the need to dominate others, says C.J. Pascoe, a sociologist at the University of Oregon who studies masculinity.
The object of that domination can be women, employees, supervisors, other men or other countries. The Trump video showed not only his disrespect for women; it also showed how he dominated Billy Bush, the man he was talking to. Trump was more aggressive, more outrageous, more entitled. Bush was reduced to sputtering, “Sheesh, your girl’s hot as shit.” He’d been Trumped. This drive to dominate is what makes an American man a “man,” says Pascoe.
As number of social apps grows, so does need to battle cyberbullying
KVAL Eugene online
"Bullying in general might be on the decline and it's been on the decline since the 1990s," says University of Oregon Associate Professor C.J. Pascoe. "We have seen an uptick of young people and online aggression since the early 2000s."
As a parent, navigating this new landscape can be hard, especially when your child is a target.
Why eating disorders are so hard for Instagram and Tumblr to combat
Buzzfeed News online
It’s “a whack-a-mole game,” said C.J. Pascoe, a sociologist at the University of Oregon who studies social psychology, gender, and new media, and was not involved with the Georgia Institute of Technology research. “The problem is so much larger than a platform.”
Why do men use the word "Fag?"
Why do so many young men use the word "fag?"
Professor C.J. Pascoe of the University of Oregon has studied this question and wrote a book about it called "Dude, You're a Fag: Masculinity and Sexuality in High School." We spoke to Pascoe about the true meaning behind homophobic slurs, why young men commonly use them, and whether they lead to violence.
Guest Viewpoint: Genderbread Person helps combat bullying
The Register-Guard online
*Op-ed by C.J. Pascoe
According to an article in the Oct. 22 Register-Guard, a sixth-grade teacher at Meadow View School in Eugene recently led a student activity featuring the “Genderbread Person.” The lesson was likely much like the one described here by the Safe Zone Project at thesafezoneproject.com .
This activity is designed to help convey information about sex, gender identity and interpersonal attraction. In differentiating between sex (male and female), gender identity (man, woman, transgender, those who identify with the gender they were assigned at birth, gender queer, etc.) and sexual attraction (straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual, queer, etc.), the Genderbread Person is a useful tool to spark discussion about the complexities of the world in which we live as well as a way to highlight the problems with gender and sexual stereotypes.
The rise of Trumpism exemplifies a contest over masculinity, over who qualifies as a “real man.” This contest being waged not only by some obvious actors – President Trump, his supporters and representatives; it is a contest also waged by those who oppose the current administration and are perhaps actively working against the perpetuation of gender inequality. The themes deployed by Trumpists and anti-Trumpists alike address a core component of masculinity in the global west – dominance. Through sexualized processes of confirmation and repudiation multiple actors in this political and social moment draw on and deploy understandings of normative masculinity as dominance – dominance over women and dominance over other, less masculine, men. Both the Trumpist and antiTrumpist movements exemplify similar discourses of masculinized dominance in which social actors claim masculinity through discourses and symbols of “compulsive heterosexuality” and divest others of it through the emasculating practices of a “fag discourse.” The story of Trumpism and movements against it is an example of the tenacity of inequality in gendered discourses.
When the university of Oregon Ducks football team defeated the Florida State University Seminoles at the Rose Bowl in early 2015, the content of their post-game revelry may have surprised some viewers. In celebrating their victory, several Oregon players were filmed singing "No Means No!" to the tune of the "War Chant" regularly sung by FSU Fans. The song was presumably directed at a particular FSU player, quarterback Jameis Winston, who had been accused of (though not chard with or convicted of) raping a female student.
Hybrid masculinity refers to men's selective incorporation of performances and identity elements associated with marginalized and subordinated masculinities and femininities. We use recent theorization of hybrid masculinities to critically review theory and research that seeks to make sense of contemporary transformations in masculinity. We suggest that research broadly supports three distinct consequences associated with recent changes in performances and politics of masculinity that work to obscure the tenacity of gendered inequality. Hybrid masculinities (i) symbolically distance men from hegemonic masculinity; (ii) situate the masculinities available to young, White, heterosexual men as somehow less meaningful than the masculinities associated with various marginalized and subordinated Others; and (iii) fortify existing social and symbolic boundaries in ways that often work to conceal systems of power and inequality in historically new ways.
Popular and academic discourses frame bullying as something that one, often high-status, homophobic kid directs at another, often lower status, GLB young person, frequently with devastating results. This article unpacks current popular and academic discourses of bullying. In doing so it highlights the important role these aggressive interactions play in boys’ gender socialization. Using a case study of homophobic bullying among teenage boys in adolescence this article suggests that studying homophobic bullying is less important as an individual pathology and more salient as a form of gender socialization and a mechanism by which gender inequality is reproduced. An inequality focused frame for bullying would privilege examining interactions, rather than individual qualities of bullies and victims; would investigate the various relationships in which these aggressive interactions take place, such as friendships rather than presuming a peer power imbalance; and flesh out a new vocabulary of bullying such that it is understood as a social problem that is not unique to young people, but reflects larger structural inequalities.
This article details the making of community and bodies in online environments, specifically the online pro-anorexia community. Building community among members of these groups is particularly fraught because tensions over claims to authenticity permeate these groups. Because these are embodied practices and online spaces are presumably disembodied, participants constantly grapple with authenticity, largely through the threat of the ‘wannarexic’. Participants manage these tensions through engaging in group rituals and deploying individual tools that attempt to make the body evident online. This article documents the way in which tensions around authenticity and embodied practices are managed through treatment of the wannarexic.
A lack of good information about what youth are doing with new media stimulates fears and hopes about the relationship between young people and digital technologies. This article focuses on new modes of inquiry into youth new media use, highlighting the challenges, complexities, and opportunities inherent in studying young people's digital cultures. It outlines methodological issues unique to studies of youth and new media, such as accessing populations of respondents, benefits and drawbacks to online qualitative research, and challenges in capturing a snapshot of young people's actual, not self-reported, media practices. This type of qualitative research on youth media cultures and practices can guide educators who are developing pedagogy and policy that integrate young people's mediated practices into the educational process.