Health

Muscular India : Masculinity, Mobility & the New Middle Class

Price: ₹399.00
(as of Jan 02,2023 13:14:46 UTC – Details)


About the Book

MICHIEL BAAS BRINGS ALIVE A WORLD OF MEN SCULPTING BODIES, REDEFINING MASCULINITIES AND CONFRONTING THEIR VULNERABILITIES IN THE GYMS OF URBAN INDIA.

The gyms of urban ‘new India’ are intriguing spaces. While they cater largely to well-off clients, these shiny, modern institutions also hold the promise of upward mobility for the personal trainers who work there.

By improving their English, ‘upgrading’ their dressing style and developing a deeper understanding of the lives of their upmarket customers, they strategise to climb the middle-class ladder. Their lean, muscular bodies—which Bollywood has set the tone for are crucial to this. Diverging from an older masculine ideal represented by pehlwani wrestlers, these bodies not only communicate (sexual) attractiveness, but also professionalism, control and even cosmopolitanism. With the gym aspiring to be a safe space for women, trainers must also find a way to break with the toxic masculinity that dominates life outside.

Yet, the more things change, the more they remain the same. Class barriers are less permeable than they appear. The use of bodily capital to breach them is more fraught with danger than one might anticipate. And the profession is riddled with pitfalls and contradictions.

Michiel Baas has spent a decade studying gyms, trainers and bodybuilders, and finds in them a new way to investigate India. He walks us through the homes and workspaces of these men – yes, they are almost all men – to bodybuilding competitions and also into their most intimate worlds of ambitions, desires and struggles. An unusual study of an unusual subject, Baas unveils a fascinating world, hidden in plain sight.

About the Author

Michiel Baas has a PhD in Anthropology from the University of Amsterdam, and has held various academic positions with the National University of Singapore, Nalanda University (Rajgir), the International Institute for Asian Studies (Leiden) and the University of Amsterdam. Most of his work centres on the Indian middle class. He has published extensively on the topic of fitness and bodybuilding in India; Indian student- migration to Australia; the migration trajectories of skilled professionals in Singapore; the Indian migration industry; and the lives and lifestyles of IT professionals in Bangalore.

Publisher ‏ : ‎ Context (19 December 2022); Westland Books A Division of Nasadiya Technologies Pvt ltd
Language ‏ : ‎ English
Paperback ‏ : ‎ 328 pages
ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 9395073624
ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-9395073622
Reading age ‏ : ‎ 18 years and up
Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 360 g
Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 14 x 2.5 x 21 cm
Net Quantity ‏ : ‎ 1 Count
Importer ‏ : ‎ Westland Books A Division of Nasadiya Technologies Pvt ltd
Packer ‏ : ‎ Westland Books A Division of Nasadiya Technologies Pvt ltd
Generic Name ‏ : ‎ Book

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