Independent thesis Advanced level (degree of Master (Two Years)), 20 credits / 30 HE credits
In this study I examine the representation of masculinity in the manga, Naruto.
The manga is about the orphan Naruto, who, together with other children goes to a ninja school. Boys and girls study and practice together, at first sight seemingly without emphasized gender differences. As the story continues, the gender differences are, however, quite obvious and to the boys advantage.
I find the difference between Naruto and other popular culture ususally presented to pre-bubertal and teenage boys to be considerable. Whereas the domination of women and the message that you can get as far as you wish, are common in American and west produced popular culture as well as in Naruto, the difference lies in how the success is achieved. The men in Naruto reach their goals by allowing their feelings to be seen and expressed. They cry, love, comfort and hate, the feelings give the men strength The loving is not sexualized, but expressedly aimed at friends, pupils and all of humankind, and the outcome is a wish to protect the loved ones. The hate on the other hand is considered as a one-way road, and Naruto’s power is his ability to make those who have given in to hate to see this.
A cultural studies approach allows me to argue för seeing Naruto as part of what is constructing masculinity in Sweden today. The hegemonic masculinity in Naruto is confident, healthy and white. It differs from femininity by expressing it’s goals and by reaching victory in the battles it parttake. It is however also loving, caring, comforting and able to express sadness and loneliness as well as anger.
2009. , 77 p.
Olsson, Annika, Fil. doktor