Activism & Politics

Chris Dixon found that his gender and sexuality are both shaped and shapeable.

Chris Crass outlines practical strategies for minimising everyday domination.

1. Practice noticing who’s in the room at meetings - how many gender privileged men (biological men), how many women, how many transgendered people, how many white people, how many people of color, is it majority heterosexual, are there out queers, what are people’s class backgrounds. Don’t assume to know people, but also work at being more aware – listening to what people say and talking with people one on one who you work with.

The political and theoretical challenges issued by contemporary feminism have provoked a range of cultural responses about men, and about masculinity. The dominant reaction is typified by the media-sponsored reassertion of tough male roles in popular drama (1), mirroring in style, if not extent, the narrow constrictions of the female beauty myth. By contrast, the last twenty years have witnessed a small but growing concern with the limitations and oppressive nature of conventional masculinity. This article seeks to describe the current ‘state of play’ in research which examines the politics of masculinity, arguing that the quality of theory is dependent upon its treatment of power relations. [Citation: Leach, Mike. (1994). The Politics of Masculinity: An Overview of Contemporary Theory. Social Alternatives, 12(4), January, pp. 36-37.]

Men's rights groups use flawed methodology to make false claims about the impact of fatherlessness. In Fatherhood and Fatherlessness (Australia Institute, Discussion Paper No. 59, November, pp. 21-23) Michael Flood reveals the junk science behind the National Fatherhood Forum's claim that "boys from a fatherless home are 14 times more likely to commit rape".

“What do you mean I’m sexist?” I was shocked. I wasn’t a jock, I didn’t hate women, I wasn’t an evil person. “But how can I be a sexist, I’m an anarchist?” I was anxious, nervous, and my defenses were up. I believed in liberation, for fighting against capitalism and the state. There were those who defended and benefited from injustice and then there’s us, right?

This text tries to place antisexist politics by men in a larger social context. It discusses men’s groups and the issue of identity politics in general. It demands a “renewal” of antisexist politics by men and ends with a look at some attempts at realizing some of the ideas discussed in the text. Part 1: In defense of the idea of antisexist men’s groups.
Ben Atherton-Zeman defines a new form of manhood free of abuse. The nation barely blinked this week as 11-year-old Nestor Herrera was stabbed to death outside a Springfield movie theatre by another boy his age. Subsequent news reports indicated that Herrera was going to the movie with a girl that the other boy wanted to date. “That other boy was jealous and got mad,” said Angel Herrera.
A true story about confronting sexism I was guiding a group of men on a two-day white water rafting trip on the Upper Klamath River near the Oregon border. This wild, isolated section of the Klamath slices through the rugged Cascade Mountains of southern Oregon and northern California. With its unparalleled wilderness beauty and over 30 major rapids including "Hells Corner Gorge" it is one of the west's finest Class IV-V river trips. This place has remained unchanged since covered wagons creaked nearby along the Oregon Trail in the 1800s.
Why International Men's Day is a bad idea. There are a number of important problems with International Men’s Day: IMD offers a false parallel to International Women’s Day. IMD invites a conservative understanding of gender relations. IMD potentially alienates services and organisations that might otherwise support measures aimed at improving men’s wellbeing or service responses to men. There are better ways to achieve the same goals. IMD may be ineffective at engaging men.
First published in The State News, 7/8/04 My three year old daughter is, in my unbiased opinion, the smartest little girl in the world. For more than a year, she's been able to identify the bad guys on TV by listening to the music. Okay, maybe that means we let her watch too much television. It also means she's learned what most of us have learned over the years: bad guys look, sound, and act in certain recognizable least on TV.