Masculinities Mondays: 10th Feb 2014

Okay, so today is actually Tuesday but I intended to post this yesterday, so it still counts.

Doing the rounds this week is a touching and gritty graphic story of work inside one of Australia’s infamous detention centres. While obviously dealing with issues of human rights, I also found this story a fascinating – and often unseen – glimpse at the challenges and tensions with social expectations of masculinity in situations where men have lost their homes, freedom and dignity. 

Another interesting work making headlines this week is the French short film Majorité Opprimée (‘Oppressed Majority’) – a vision of an alternate, female-dominated universe, where it is men who primarily experience harassment and abuse. The film does not at all present this alternate reality in a positive light but, rather, encourages the audience to re-think what are currently seen as acceptable forms of masculine expression and behaviour and highlights how inequality is harmful to all of us. 

Also this week, The Guardian launched their ‘women’s rights and gender equality in focus‘ section, backed by the Ford Foundation and in association with Mama Cash and AWID. Sadly, in it’s first week, it already seems to have fallen into the ‘gender = women and girls’ fallacy…the men and boys are no where to be found. Indeed, the main Guardian website also has a specific ‘Women’ section. If we really want to see effective change, one way to start would be to lobby influential papers like the Guardian to present gender issues in a more nuanced and critical way. 

Have a good week, everyone!

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