Category: 2016 Fall

Fall 2016 Edition

A Warrior’s Return South African Men’s Gender Justice Chorus The Long and Winding Road to Women’s Equality Beyond “Absent” and “Deadbeat” Dads Features Men’s Voices in South Africa’s Gender Justice Chorus Amanda Pickett In South Africa, every six hours a woman is killed by her intimate partner. To say that gender-based violence is a problem in the country is a gross understatement. Its roots are woven into the country’s historical struggle to end apartheid, its ongoing economic insecurity, and the global system of patriarchy. And, to make matters worse, the men who commit gender-based violence, especially men of influence,...

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Fall 2016: Men@Work

Michigan Board of Ed Protects Transgender Student’s Rights “Schools should be a place that you go to learn, not a place to fear.” —Corey Maison, 14-year-old trans girl The Michigan State Board of Education has taken a major step toward protecting the rights and safety of LGBT students. In September, the board voted 6-2 to approve a new set of statewide policy recommendations for the inclusion and support of LGBT students at K-12 public schools, including a slate of recommendations focused specifically on transgender students. The document covers a wide range of topics, including supporting inclusion of LGBT content...

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Mail Bonding

A New Boys Magazine Anyone? I found Voice Male when I was initially looking for a magazine for my young son—a magazine that gives young boys positive examples of male and female leadership; age appropriate social and environmental justice; and that presents positive ways of being a male beyond being tough, sporty, violent, or into cars. There are some great kids magazines out there such as Chirp, but I have yet to find one that directly or indirectly deals with gender issues and social/enviro justice from a feminist perspective directed at and to support young boys, or even both...

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Toxic Masculinity Unmasked in Six Minutes

American Male looks at the effects hypermasculinity— including attitudes toward women, minority groups, and LGBTQ+ people—has on men, particularly young men. For them, it’s clear there’s a real crisis in contemporary masculinity, and the battle of identity politics has flared up again. The powerful six-minute film examines the toxic masculinity often pervasive among groups of young men in the U.S. and the disturbing interplay found between same-sex desire and violent homophobia within that group. Filmmaker Michael Rohrbaugh said in an interview with The Huffington Post that he wanted to showcase the ways in which younger males navigate a culture...

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Books

Every two minutes a U.S. resident is sexually assaulted. One out of every six women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime. Ages 12–34 are the highest risk years for rape and sexual assault. Ninety percent of all rape victims are female. Approximately 70 percent of rape and sexual assault victims experience moderate to severe distress, a larger percentage than for any other violent crime. —Statistics supplied by RAINN (Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network)   Making Out Like a Virgin: Sex, Desire & Intimacy After Sexual Trauma Edited by Catriona McHardy and...

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Mary V vs. Henry V? When Gender Struggles Are Center Stage

In Mary V, a feminist exploration of Shakespeare’s Henry V, women battle for control of a production of Henry V. Led by their hero Mary, the play explores the ways in which the division between femininity and masculinity ultimately yields destruction for both sexes, and argues that peace and understanding of gender are preferable to bias and conflict. Nietzsche’s concept of “the abyss gaze[ing] back” and faithfulness to one’s ideals is a  prominent theme. Written by Rebekah Carrow and codirected by Pati Amoroso and Yonatan Weinstein, Mary V has been described as a genderbending exploration of Shakespeare’s Henry V....

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A Black Lives Matter Booklist for Teens

by Kiera Parrott In the wake of the tragic killings of two black men by police in July, Alton Sterling in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and Philando Castile in Falcon Heights, Minnesota, librarians around the country have been looking for ways to support and educate their communities. Chelsea Couillard-Smith, a librarian for Hennepin County (Minnesota) Library, created a #BlackLivesMatter booklist for teens. The idea for the booklist begin as Couillard-Smith, who shares a juvenile title on Twitter every week for #FridayReads, thought about recent events and which books might provide a starting point for reflection and conversation. “I really wanted...

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What’s Missing in the Way We Look at Rampage Killings?

by Michael Kimmel It’s been four years since James Holmes murdered 12 people and injured 70 more in a mass shooting on July 20, 2012, in a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado. Acting alone, he was immediately declared by pundits and public alike to be mentally ill. A year earlier, in January 2011, Jared Lee Loughner opened fire at a political rally in a parking lot in suburban Tucson, killing six and wounding, among others, then U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords. Again, acting alone. Again, clearly mentally ill. On December 14, 2012, Adam Lanza murdered 20 first graders and six...

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What’s the Sex Binary Got to Do with Rape?

by John Stoltenberg This is a story about storytelling. In particular it’s about the story you are told if it is determined at the time of your birth—on the basis of visual inspection of your baby groin—that you should grow up to be a boy and then someday a man. Now, I know that not everyone is told this story as their story. But what I’m going to say is for the sake of everyone, because everyone has a stake in understanding the story. If you are someone who was told this story, you were not only told it;...

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Will Women Resist More Caregiving by Men?

by Oswaldo Montoya Working with men to transform patriarchal relations with women is complex, as Bayano Valy’s article reveals. In its intervention, “Men in the Kitchen,” Rede HOPEM (http:www.hopem.org.mz/) of Mozambique combines skill building related to domestic chores and attitudinal change, in turn related to gender and masculinity, so that doing care work is not seen by men merely as supporting women but as a joint responsibility. HOPEM is enabling men to move from a “helping out” mentality to equal sharing of caregiving work in an effort to challenge power relations among genders. Bayano points out the apparent contradictory...

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Men: Equal Partners in Care Work?

by Bayano Valy Anecdotal evidence in Mozambique shows that there are men who perform care and household work believing they are helping their partners—this is grounded in evidence from pre- and post-evaluation courses of the programme “Men in the Kitchen.” “Men in the Kitchen” is a program designed and implemented by Mozambique’s Men for Change organization Rede HOPEM (http:www.hopem.org.mz/) which seeks to challenge power relations by getting men to question hegemonic masculinities using a gender transformative approach. The course has trained more than 200 men since its inception in 2014. Alongside “Men in the Kitchen,” the men are trained...

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The Long and Winding Road to Women’s Equality

by James A. Haught With the possibility of America’s first woman president looming, it’s appropriate to consider the monumental struggle for gender equality. For millennia, female inferiority was presumed, and mandated, in virtually every human culture. Through most of history, the brawn of heavier males gave them dominance, leaving women in lesser status— often mere possessions of men, confined to the home, rarely educated, with few rights. Many were forced to wear veils or shrouds when outdoors, and they couldn’t go outside without a male relative escort. Fathers kept their daughters restricted, then chose husbands who became their new...

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Nigerian Men Begin Marching to End Men’s Violence Against Women

by Chris Onuoha In Lagos, largest city in Nigeria, domestic violence and sexual assault cases have been on the rise. Perpetrators often seem undeterred. Responding to the menace, in September the Lagos State Domestic and Sexual Violence Response Team held a walk in both Ikeja and Festac Town, Lagos, as part of events marking Domestic Violence Month 2016. The monthlong campaign had the themes, “Promoting positive masculinity” and “Men as flag bearers in the fight against sexual and gender based violence.” Marchers walked from Ikeja down busy Awolowo Road to the governor’s office in Alausa Secretariat. Participants included students,...

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Forgiveness in the Worst Place in the World to Be a Woman

Mary of Kivu by Gary Barker Gary Barker’s new novel, Mary of Kivu, takes place mainly on the shores of Lake Kivu, near the Rwandan-Congolese border where amidst the ongoing conflicts and horrendous sexual violence against women, there are reports of a local woman performing miracles. Every day, hundreds of people from nearby villages line up outside the home of Mary of Kivu hoping to be cured. The Vatican sends someone to investigate, as do international women’s rights NGOs. Mary shares her story with no one—until she meets Keith Masterson, an American journalist looking to add color to his...

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Beyond “Deadbeat” and Absent Fathers

by Gary Barker and Michael Kimmel Continuing to follow a story we published last issue, “The State of Fatherhood in the U.S.,” is this further examination of the different realities fathers in the United States experience depending on class and privilege. The writers were major contributors to the report State of America’s Fathers. Earlier this year, several major corporations sponsored a night in one of the Smithsonian’s flagship museums in Washington, D.C., for more than 400 “daddy bloggers.” Their motivation? Fathers are now as likely as mothers to be deciding what food, toys, children’s books and clothing to buy....

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A Brutal Truth Every Black Man Needs to Hear About Masculinity

by Aaron Morrison It can take a lot of courage for a young black man to make this admission: “I was never really a tough guy, I don’t like sports, I have some feminine mannerisms.” Those are the words of rapper Tyler, the Creator, who recently talked to Fader magazine about fashion and masculinity in the black community. “The black community is very fixated on that hard masculinity, they always gotta be hard and fucking tough,” he said. “It’s kids who’re probably growing up and don’t know themselves yet or have the strongest self esteem so they’re trying to...

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Will Peace Ever Get a Chance in Colombia?

by Sebastián Molano What is the first memory you have about living in a country at war? Every time I asked this question to my fellow Colombians, there is always a long pause. Then, memories begin to emerge, as if pieces of a chess game are being placed on the board. The magnitude and scope of decades of conflict have affected each of us in different, profound ways, shaping how we experience and understand the world. Sadly, the conflict has become the primary fabric that threads our stories together as a nation. Today, this question is more relevant than...

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A Warrior’s Return

by Adam Pattantyus After completing four years as a nuclear weapons officer in West Germany during the height of the Cold War, Adam Pattantyus was, in his words, “toast.” Depleted, empty, worn out. In 1987, he returned to the U.S. completely drained—physically, emotionally and spiritually. He says he had lost some core human qualities, including optimism, empathy, and the ability to relate. “I returned less human and had a mechanical approach to life.” Recovering his humanity—his ability to relate with warmth and sensitivity to himself and others—became a lifelong task. When I was back in the world, my wife...

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Men’s Voices in South Africa’s Gender Justice Chorus

by Amanda Pickett In South Africa, every six hours a woman is killed by her intimate partner. To say that gender-based violence is a problem in the country is a gross understatement. Its roots are woven into the country’s historical struggle to end apartheid, its ongoing economic insecurity, and the global system of patriarchy. And, to make matters worse, the men who commit gender-based violence, especially men of influence, are rarely held accountable. Two recent examples: a protest in August over remarks by President Jacob Zuma, and the ongoing femicide trial of former community leader Patrick Wisani. On August...

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