International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

The Virtue of “Tilt Control” – Poker Gambling & Masculinity
Simon S. Simonsen

”Tilt control” is a narrative that is widely used by poker players in reference to the control exercised by players in poker gambling. The masculinity of poker can be found in this narrative and the concept can be used to explain this connection. While there are indications that more women than ever are playing poker, the vast majority are still men. Research suggests that there are gendered patterns in gambling: men tend to gravitate towards skill games such as poker, whereas women are attracted to games such as bingo. This paper, based on interviews with 13 Danish male poker gamblers, investigates this connection. It is proposed that so many men find poker interesting because it captures a set of existential conditions in society that are predominantly oriented to males. The poker game offers the players an opportunity to explore, challenge, and play with these conditions.

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