Characteristics of “Masculinized” Industries: Gay Men as a Provocative Exception to Male Privilege and Gendered Rules

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18 Scopus citations


Masculinized industries encompass many work contexts described as masculine, male-dominated, and/or gendered. However, the use of any of those three latter designations hinges on the gender binary (men and women) and the inequitable distribution of power in favor of men. Describing an industry or group of industries as “masculinized” is more political, inferring the stance that male privilege applies only to certain men working in these industries. The purpose of this structured literature review was to systematically examine the literature on masculine, male-dominated, gendered, and masculinized work contexts. Findings indicated that masculinized industries create metaphorical barricades that serve to sustain long-standing traditions, customs, policies, and practices potentially detrimental to many, including gay men. Overall, this article moves the conversation about inequality in these industries beyond that of the gender binary.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)415-441
Number of pages27
JournalHuman Resource Development Review
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014, © The Author(s) 2014.


  • gay men
  • gendered rules
  • male privilege
  • masculinized industries


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