“We Don’t Do History”: Constructing Masculinity in a World of Blood
“Welcome to Stake Land, kid”: Mister’s words here signal Martin’s induction into a vampire hunter apprenticeship in Jim Mickle’s 2010 movie Stake Land.1 This role as apprentice also indicates a shift from childhood to young adulthood for Martin, and demonstrates a bond between Mister (played by Nick Damici) as stand-in father figure and Martin (Connor Paolo) as filial learner. In this taut film written by Mickle and Damici, the undead stalk the night with fangs bared, while what is left of humanity huddles in gated communities with armed guards. As in most apocalypse tropes, it is not just the monsters at the gate that are terrifying: other human beings, more specifically here men, are frequently far more dangerous than the vampires. In Stake Land, cultural stereotypes of masculinity replicate and reinforce gendered norms about male violence and emotional distance.
KeywordsSexualized Violence Gender Norm Moral Code Hegemonic Masculinity Gated Community
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