The paper analyses the social construct of masculinity in light of marxist and feminist theory. Also, there is an analysis of masculinity within the context of ritualization, as found in warfare and other forms of violence. Participant observation is used within the context of a group of men to determine the factors that shape their masculinity. Similarities between the social phenomena of war and the more individual manifestations in the group are found. They include, among others, ritualization of activity, emotional isolation, emotional restrictiveness, shame of any deviation from the norm, and the need to control oneself and one's environment.