Pigeons and masculinity

From Austin Storm
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We can learn something, Day says, from the way pigeon men relate to their pigeons, for it is with a profound attention that might best be described as love. There is a form of tender domesticity attendant to pigeon-keeping that undercuts familiar stories about the nature of working-class masculinity. Lofts are cleaned, babies are tended, droppings are scraped, grain is weighed, and pigeons are held quietly in the hand to be minutely and lovingly examined; it oddly mirrors the cleaning and housekeeping, cooking and child-rearing roles familiarly ascribed to women. Day is aware of that oddness and what it might mean, and it gives him vantage on working out what it means to be a father, a man, to make a home.

- Jon Day, Homing from this Times Literary Supplement review