Masculinities and narrating the past: experiences of researching white men who refused to serve in the apartheid army

Conway, Daniel (2008). Masculinities and narrating the past: experiences of researching white men who refused to serve in the apartheid army. Qualitative Research, 8(3) pp. 347–354.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/1468794106093631

URL: http://qrj.sagepub.com/content/8/3/347.abstract

Abstract

This article reflexively analyses the construction of identity and the representation of the past in qualitative interviews with white men who refused to serve in the apartheid-era South African Defence Force (SADF). The contribution that white male objectors made to the anti-apartheid struggle occupies an ambivalent and increasingly forgotten aspect of South African liberation history. In a reflexive research story, I argue that the gendered, sexual and raced subjectivities of the researcher and researched are central to the joint construction of meaning in the interview and in the creation of self-narratives. The article also analyses how the narratives of white men's involvement in resisting apartheid are defined by their perceived position and wider power struggles in contemporary South Africa.

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