Spinning, Spooning and the Seductions of Flirtatious Masculinity in Contemporary Politics

Article


Yates, Candida 2010. Spinning, Spooning and the Seductions of Flirtatious Masculinity in Contemporary Politics. Subjectivity. 3 (3), pp. 282-302.
AuthorsYates, Candida
Abstract

This paper explores the relationships between masculinity, flirtation and fantasy within the promotional arena of politics and PR. Flirtation is associated with coquetry and play, connoting a lack of seriousness, and in political flirtation, the desire to move between different opinions and ideas. Flirtation is often linked with femininity. Yet against a backdrop of masculinity in crisis, the study of flirtation, with its connotations of ambiguity and frustrated desire, is useful to explore the uncertainties of masculinities today. Dilemmas about flirtation as a tantalising performance resonate with misgivings about the seductive nature of political spin and the desire of politicians to woo audiences by flirting to the camera. Taking examples of politicians such as Tony Blair, Gordon Brown and Barack Obama, this paper discusses the possibilities of flirtatious masculinity as a counter-hegemonic strategy within the symbolic battleground of Western politics, a struggle largely played out in print and digital media.

KeywordsFlirtation; masculinity; politics; play; psychoanalysis; PR; promotional politics; New Labour; Western politics; spin
JournalSubjectivity
Journal citation3 (3), pp. 282-302
ISSN1755-6341
Year2010
Accepted author manuscript
License
CC BY-ND
Web address (URL)http://dx.doi.org/10.1057/sub.2010.16
http://hdl.handle.net/10552/1207
Publication dates
PrintSep 2010
Publication process dates
Deposited21 Apr 2011
Additional information

Citation:
Yates, C. (2010) ‘Spinning, Spooning and the Seductions of Flirtatious Masculinity in Contemporary Politics' Subjectivity 3 (3) pp.282-302..

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