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Constructing Masculinity Through Penetration Discourse: The Intersection of Misogyny and Homophobia in High School Wrestling

Drawing from ethnographic data, this article analyzes how the ‘‘fag’’ identity and the epithet ‘‘pussy’’ relate to high school wrestlers’ constructions of masculinity. Empirically, this research illuminates two dynamics: (1) how wrestlers achieve normative masculinity by symbolically framing sexual relations as acts of domination and (2) the way in which wrestlers’ use of ‘‘pussy’’ parallels how other adolescents typically deploy the epithet ‘‘fag.’’ The article introduces the concept of ‘‘penetration discourse’’ to highlight how these linguistic and corporeal aspects of wrestlers’ masculinity interconnect with misogyny and homophobia.