Capacitating militarised masculinity: Genitourinary injuries, sex/sexuality, and US military medicine
In this short summary video, author Jenn Hobbs discusses the key points from her Review of International Studies (RIS) article - Capacitating militarised masculinity: Genitourinary injuries, sex/sexuality, & US military medicine.
The article examines the soldiering body in relation to the increasing prevalence of genitourinary injuries in military personnel. The article shows that genitourinary injuries destabilise the gender identity of US service members.
Want to know more? You can read Jenn's full article at DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/S0260210522000560
This particular article is open access, however BISA members receive access to all articles in RIS (and our other journal European Journal of International Security) as a benefit of membership. To gain access log in to your BISA account and scroll down to the 'Membership benefits' section. If you're not yet a member join today.
This article examines the soldiering body in relation to the increasing prevalence of genitourinary injuries in military personnel. Feminist scholars have demonstrated that the idealised masculine soldiering body are central to the workings of international politics. The article shows that US militarised masculinity operates through the selective distribution of bodily capacities. The article draws upon critical disability studies, particularly Jasbir Puar's work on capacity and debility, to argue that treatments for genitourinary injuries revolve around the production of seminal capacity. Queer and trans bodies are debilitated in these arrangements through the denial of heterosexual and cisgender capabilities to them. To unpack this argument the article analyses treatments for genitourinary injuries. The article shows that genitourinary injuries destabilise the gender identity of US service members. Through an exploration of surgical treatments, including penis transplants and reconstructive surgeries, and fertility treatments, the article shows how masculine capacitation is achieved for some US service members through the debilitation of others; in particular, queer and trans bodies, and the bodies of Iraqi and Afghan civilians.
Image by Israel Defense Forces licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 via Wikimedia Commons.