Alasuutari, Pertti & Siltari, Jorma
|Title:||Realm of Male Freedom. A Study of Darts Culture in a Suburban Restaurant|
|Published in:||Tampereen yliopisto sarja B 37|
|No electronic version available.|
The study analyses working culture and alcohol in Finland through an informal suburban pub's darts club. The "collective subjectivity of the darts club" is the main research object. The darts culture is analysed as a subculture of the local working culture and as a part of it.
Playing darts and drinking beer is an essential part of the free time of the men studied. Most of the men are unprofessional blue collar workers, a few of them have professional blue collar education. They gather to the pub to play and drink a few times a week. Wives are usually against this because of the money spent on beer and because of the loss of time spent with the family. Alasuutari and Siltari describe wives as symbols of the society and its denials and restraints.
According to the men interviewed and observed, playing darts is the main reason for them to visit the pub. Drinking beer and meeting friends are an important part of the dart playing. Drinking too much is, however, not encouraged, because it makes one unable to play. Even so, men often drink more than they say they do. The men have so called Finnish drinking heads (viinapää) and the working class style to drink, and they belong to the 'wet generation' which grew up in the 1960's. The study discusses the Finnish alcohol policy and its attempts to control especially working class drinking habits.
All the men belong to the working class. The youngest ones in the group especially linked physical work, strength and manhood together, and despised in their speech white collar work. More senior men, who themselves had professions (e.g. car painter, mechanic), gave more value to white collar or any kind of professional work. They also linked the accuracy needed in darts and their work.