It is time to reframe the problems of domestic and sexual violence in Australia. To frame domestic violence as the perpetrators’ problem. In today’s presentation, I will argue that we need to change the ways that the community, policy-makers, and violence prevention advocates and educators ourselves talk about domestic violence. And I will describe a new project intended to contribute to the reduction and prevention of domestic violence in Australia.
Much of the work to engage men in preventing violence against women across the globe is profeminist — it is informed by feminist perspectives and done by or in collaboration with women and women’s organisations. Men involved in this work typically are expected to support feminism and to be accountable to women and feminism. But which feminism should profeminist men support? There has been relatively little discussion of this question in the ‘engaging men’ field.
I have five messages today.
Male supremacist “men’s rights” and “fathers’ rights” groups have been calling for things like a “Ministry for Men” or “Office for Men” for years.
I have been working on issues of men, masculinities, and gender for 32 years, and it looks to me like men’s roles in building gender equality are now part of the public agenda to an unprecedented extent. Almost every day, there are new stories and initiatives on how men can support women’s participation in medicine and science, end domestic and sexual violence, share the load of fathering and housework, and more. This focus has a compelling rationale.
Engaging men and boys in the prevention of domestic violence is, at its heart, a project of social justice. A feminist and social justice approach to domestic violence prevention, first, recognizes domestic violence as a social injustice: this violence causes harm, is fundamentally linked to power and inequality, and acts as a fundamental barrier to gender equality. Second, it addresses the social inequalities at the root of this violence and, third, it works for change through social action. How do contemporary efforts to engage men and boys measure up to this approach?
Any assessment of the evidence for gender transformative work with men and boys should consider the conditions that have shaped the emergence of this work. Male-focused gender transformative work has a history, or rather histories. Reviewing its evidence base in light of the forces and factors which have informed its emergence over time enriches our understanding of both the findings from, and the silences within, this body of work.
Mobilising men is a vital part of social change towards gender equality, but it is under-developed in Australia.
What is the state of gender norms in Australia? To what extent are traditional norms of masculinity still dominant, and to what extent are they shifting or breaking down? Do young men agree with stereotypical constructions of masculinity, and if they do, what implications does this have for their lives and their relations with others? To answer these questions, this webinar draws on two recent Australian surveys, one among young men aged 18 to 30 and another among people in Australia. The webinar then explores how we may reconstruct masculine norms.
There are various claims made by men’s rights advocates (MRAs) that have no basis in truth. They are ‘factoids’, items of unreliable or false information that are reported and repeated so often that they become accepted as fact. On this page, we fact-check some of the inaccurate claims routinely made by MRAs. Additions and revisions are welcome.