I presented at the International Conference on Violence, Abuse and Trauma on August 24, 2015, where I also attended many workshops. One was about engaging men, as several usually are these days. I’ve written quite a bit about efforts to engage men in preventing violence against women and girls. My writing about this is known to take the form of critique. As with my MPA capstone, it is a critique intended to improve such efforts, to improve our chances of attaining our goal – creating healthy, thriving communities where there is no place for violence against women and girls. What I’ve learned over the years (that include running a statewide engaging men project) is that there is no place for critique. I was reprimanded in my most recent place of employment for it. My coworkers were retaliated against for supporting my critiques. We can’t afford to make men mad, I was told. There, I learned quickly that women must keep their mouths shut when it comes to the behaviors of men in the “movement” to prevent violence against women and girls. It was no different at this conference session.
Professor of Sociology and Executive Director of the Center for the Study of Men & Masculinities at Stony Brook University (and friend of the blog) Michael Kimmel recently delivered a TED Talk on why gender equality is good for everyone:
This article by Masculinities101 co-founder and editor first appeared at Feministing.com:
Circumcision is one of the most common surgical procedures in the United States. It is also among the most hotly debated. Scientists and doctors aren’t settled on the benefits or risk of the surgery and it is so politicized that it’s hard to parse fact from fiction, objective truth from medical mythmaking. Recently, vlogger Justin Dennis, at Everyday Feminism, gave us five reasons why (feminist) parents should consider not circumcising their boys. An important feminist foray into the topic, Dennis points to important issues like consent, bodily integrity, sexual health, and sexual pleasure (1). Those are great entry points for feminists who care about children’s rights and human rights.
But not every anti-circumcision position is a feminist one, and that’s where we need to be careful. In fact, male circumcision has been actively politicized by the Men’s Rights Movement (MRM), a dangerous and reactionary grouping of organizations who seek to undo many of the gains made by feminists (called ‘misandrists’ in the MRM). According to Men’s Rights Activists (MRAs), they fight for gender equality, against a feminist movement that has made men subservient to women. When you hear men (and sometimes women) speak about the danger of false rape accusations, or the myth of the wage gap, or a marriage boycott, chances are you are talking to a Men’s Rights Activist, or at least someone influenced by their ideology. …
Engendering Men: A Collaborative Review of Evidence on Men and Boys in Social Change and Gender Equality.12 Oct
The Institute of Development Studies and MenEngage Alliance co-chairs Promundo-US and Sonke Gender Justice (with funding from the UK Department for International Development) have published an evidence review to to help answer the question, ‘what works best when it comes to engaging men and boys for gender equality?
Engendering Men: A Collaborative Review of Evidence on Men and Boys in Social Change and Gender Equality, assesses trends and shifts in related social norms and structures over the past 20 years; successful policies and programmes and implications for best practice; and future directions for promoting men’s and boys’ support for gender equality.
I’m writing this on the flight back from the International Conference on Masculinities in New York, which was an inspiring and energizing experience. It’s been a while since I wrote for Masculinities101, and having a chance to really engage with other people who are deeply involved in engaging men to reduce gendered inequalities got me motivated to write more. At the same time, the conference was definitely geared towards people who are connected to major organizations or institutions, so I wanted to take the opportunity to bring some of the themes from the conference out to folks who were not able to attend or might do their work in a different way. These are, of course, just the themes that stuck out to me, and some of them interact and overlap in complex ways that I won’t detail, but I wanted to provide a space where folks who were not at the conference could think about and discuss them as well.
Accountability – The conference was opened with a panel discussion entitled “Accountability in Activism and Research,” and the theme came up in nearly every conversation I heard thereafterfire. Continue reading
The International Conference on Masculinities is only a few days away! Today, we are excited to provide an excerpt from a new book by three featured speakers: You can hear Michael Messner, Max Greenberg and Tal Peretz on a featured panel on ‘Ally Tensions’ on Saturday March 7th, 11.15am in the Grand Ballroom. The following is an excerpt from their new book “Some Men: Feminist Allies and the Movement to End Violence Against Women”. The excerpt will also appear in the spring issue of VoiceMaleMagazine.
What does it mean for men to ally with women to stop gender-based violence? This is the central question we tackle in our new book Some Men: Feminist Allies and the Movement to End Violence Against Women. Based on life history interviews with 52 men anti-violence activists aged 22-70, and twelve women who work with these men, we explore the opportunities as well as the strains and tensions in men’s work to prevent sexual assault and domestic violence.
To add another dimension to this debate, we would like to point to a new report released by The African American Policy Forum. In this report the authors show that “girls of color face much harsher school discipline than their white peers but are excluded from current efforts to address the school-to-prison pipeline.”
You can also listen to an interview with one of the report’s authors, Prof. Kimberlé Crenshaw, director of the Center for Intersectionality and Social Policy Studies at Columbia Law School and co-founder of the African-American Policy Forum, who was recently interviewed on FAIR‘s radio program Counterspin.
The benefit of paternity leave is more than a few weeks time off.
[This article first appeared at MARC – Men Advocating Real Change]On August 14th, National Public Radio’s popular news show, All Things Considered, dedicated a significant portion of their airtime to a discussion of paternity leave. They argued that a growing number of fathers desire, or even expect, to be given time off of work to spend with a new child. The vast majority of working fathers already do take time off, but the amount of time that they take off, and at what cost, varies widely. Chief among the various forces determining the amount of paternity leave men utilize is the support, or lack thereof, from their employers. And, while at first glance paternity leave may appear to be a burden to employers, there are numerous benefits that are certainly worth discussing.
A couple weeks ago, I had the privilege of attending the annual Women’s Power Conference at the Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, New York. The theme of this year’s conference was “Women/Men: The Next Conversation.” Combing through the roster of speakers prior to attending, I found a handful of familiar names—Carlos Andrés Gómez, Tony Porter, Michael Kimmel, Ted Turner—but the conference’s title still left me intrigued. What exactly would we be talking about? This was a women’s leadership event, yet men were being introduced to the conversation. “Sure,” I told Masculinities 101, “I’ll write about it.”
The International Conference on Masculinities: Engaging Men and Boys for Gender Equality. Call for Proposals8 Sep
CALL FOR PROPOSALS
The International Conference on Masculinities:
Engaging Men and Boys for Gender Equality
On March 6-8, 2015, the Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities (CSMM) will host the International Conference on Masculinities: Engaging Men and Boys for Gender Equality, in New York City. The Conference is timed to immediately precede the meeting of the Commission of the Status of Women (CSW) at the United Nations,
Twenty years after the Fourth World Conference on Women in Beijing, the CSW will hold its annual two-week meeting, March 9-27, 2015, in New York. Thousands of participants from UN agencies, NGOs and national governments will discuss the progress made towards greater gender equality over the past two decades.
Those twenty years have also witnessed unprecedented efforts to engage men around gender equality. The CSMM conference aims to bring together more than 500 activists, practitioners, and academic researchers from around the world who are working to engage men and boys in fulfilling the Platform for Action adopted by the CSW in Beijing. It will review the success of programs to engage men and boys, share research-in-progress, discuss new and possible policy initiatives, and chart research needs for the future.
The Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities was established at Stony Brook University (SUNY) in 2013. The Center is dedicated to interdisciplinary research on boys, men, masculinities and gender. Its mission is to bring together researchers with practitioners and activists to develop and enhance social reform projects focusing on boys and men.
For this conference, CSMM has partnered with the American Men’s Studies Association, and the MenEngage Network, to build opportunities for dialogue, critique and inspiration across three days of presentations, panels, workshops, and trainings. The twin goals of the conference are: (1) To infuse men’s activism in support of gender justice with the rigor and insights of the most up-to-date research; (2) to increase cooperation and ties between academic researchers who address various gender issues, and feminist activists, practitioners, and advocates.
CSMM invites all those committed to engaging boys and men in these global efforts to promote gender equality to share their ideas, programs, projects, and research.
Some basic themes of the conference will include:
– boys’ healthy development and education;
– involved fatherhood;
– balancing work and family life;
– men’s friendships;
– promoting men’s health, reducing health risks and HIV, and supporting women’s reproductive health and rights;
– joining the global struggle against men’s violence against women, sexual assault, trafficking, and harmful traditional practices;
– engaging men in policies to promote gender equality in education, employment, social life, and the political arena.
Some specific issues might include: transforming fatherhood; working with boys and young men; challenges of reaching men in post-conflict settings; preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS; men and aging, disability, impairment, and illness; diverse masculinities; multi-cultural coalition building; challenging homophobia; understanding and preventing gang-rapes and mass-murders by boys and men; engaging religious authorities; boys’ education; challenging bullying, harassment, and domestic abuse; working with abusive & violent men; men and child-custody issues; campus programs for preventing sexual violence; men in prisons; men and the military; men and prostitution; gender-linked alcohol and drug abuse; men’s depression and suicide, and other topics.
Presentations can cover research, policy, interventions, and activist work. Presentation formats may include: 3 -5 person panels, short one-person talks (with Q-&-A), workshops, films, art, poster presentations, informal roundtable discussions, music, and performances. We will accept formal academic papers but at the conference we will ask that presenters not read papers but to be more informal and interactive, within the context of language possibilities. The premium at each session will be on discussion.
The working language will be English. Sessions completely in Spanish, French, Arabic, and Chinese may be accepted but the conference unfortunately cannot provide the resources for translation.
Conference costs will be kept low to enable widespread participation, and some limited financial support may be available to those in need, especially from the Global South.
The deadline for proposal submission is October 31st, 2014.
Please visit the Conference Website.