Working with men: Strategies and challenges in engaging men in building non-violence and gender equality
Efforts to engage men in preventing men’s violence against women are gaining momentum around the world. Men are becoming involved as participants in education programs, audiences for social marketing, activists and advocates, community leaders, and policy makers. First then, what do we know about effective practice in engaging men in violence prevention? What works, and what doesn’t? Second, what are the challenges and controversies of this work?
What are the impacts of pornography exposure or consumption among children and young people? And what can be done about it? These questions are the focus of an Australian Government enquiry, "Harm being done to Australian children through access to pornography on the Internet". In the submission here, Dr Michael Flood summarises the research evidence and outlines key strategies for preventing and limiting harm.
What happens when men are the subjects of research? Gender and other forms of social difference are performed and negotiated in part through face-to-face interactions, including through such research methods as interviews and focus groups. When men or women conduct gender-conscious research with male research subjects, a host of issues are raised: practical, political, and epistemological. This chapter explores three dimensions of face-to-face research among men.
Pornography is transforming boys’ and young men’s sexualities. It has an increasing influence on how males (and females) think and feel about sex and bodies, the kinds of sex they want to have and do have, and their sexual and intimate relations. This presentation begins by mapping the evidence regarding key areas of pornography’s influence. It then explores the social and educational strategies which can be used to minimise the harms of pornography consumption.
A range of articles on male feminists, men supporting feminism, and so on have appeared in recent years. These populist articles have recurring themes regarding what men should do. Men should:
Our world is a deeply unequal one. Systemic inequalities which disadvantage women and advantage men are visible around the globe. Whether one looks at political power and authority, economic resources and decision-making, sexual and family relations, or media and culture, one finds gender inequalities. These are sustained in part by constructions of masculinity–by the cultural meanings associated with being a man, the practices which men adopt, and the collective and institutional organisation of men’s lives and relations.
What is a ‘gender-synchronised’ approach to working with women and men to build gender equality? While this term is increasingly common, there are ambiguities and issues in its use. Michael Flood offers a quick discussion.
In this 10-minute speech at the Melbourne Town Hall, Dr Michael Flood had four messages: (1) We know a fair amount about the problem – about men’s violence against women. (2) Men are now part of the solution. (3) We face real challenges. (4) It’s time for a fresh approach.
New journal article: From work with men and boys to changes of social norms and reduction of inequities in gender relations
Violence perpetrated by and against men and boys is a major public health problem. Although individual men’s use of violence differs, engagement of all men and boys in action to prevent violence against women and girls is essential. We discuss why this engagement approach is theoretically important and how prevention interventions have developed from treating men simply as perpetrators of violence against women and girls or as allies of women in its prevention, to approaches that seek to transform the relations, social norms, and systems that sustain gender inequality and violence. We review evidence of intervention effectiveness in the reduction of violence or its risk factors, features commonly seen in more effective interventions, and how strong evidence-based interventions can be developed with more robust use of theory. Future interventions should emphasise work with both men and boys and women and girls to change social norms on gender relations, and need to appropriately accommodate the differences between men and women in the design of programmes.
A range of critiques and assessments of the men's rights movement have been published in recent years. While there are academic assessments and explorations of this movement and its politics and agendas and impact, here I have gathered a list of more accessible discussions. I hope they're useful.