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Professional WrestlingSport and Spectacle, Second Edition$
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Sharon Mazer

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781496826862

Published to University Press of Mississippi: September 2020

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496826862.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 17 June 2021

Learning the Game

Learning the Game

(p.49) 3 Learning the Game
Professional Wrestling

Sharon Mazer

University Press of Mississippi

To learn the game, an aspiring professional wrestler at the Johnny Rodz Unpredictable School of Professional Wrestling must do more than acquire athletic and performative skills. He must also assimilate masculine codes of behaviour to earn the right to enter and perform in the squared circle. Learning the game is an often brutal reality check, an enforced encounter with one’s own physical, intellectual, and emotional limitations experienced through the tedium of repetitive practice and the volatility of other men. It is an exercise in managing the self, as much about learning to submit as it is about dominating, and about learning to accept the demand that one lose as it is about enjoying the pleasure of winning, or at least the appearance of winning. As with many other masculine rites of passage, it is ironic that to prove their manhood wrestlers must first surrender it to the others.

Keywords:   Wrestlers training, Masculinity, Theatricality, Lucha Libre, Kinesthetics

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