There has been growing recognition of how much rigid constructions of masculinity and patriarchy affect and impact men and boys. Meaningful engagement with men and boys is increasingly recognized as critical to gender equality and equity, necessary not only for women’s empowerment, but also for transforming the social and gender norms that reinforce patriarchy and inequality and harm both women and men.
Many men and adolescent boys struggle with the complexities of masculinity and related perceptions. It is important to engage with men and boys to not only address violence against women and girls, but also to challenge the traditional notions of masculinity – to acknowledge and recognize their privilege in order to be able to counter unequal norms and be agents of change.
The primary challenge embedded in this work is how to engage men and boys effectively, which requires an understanding of the conceptual underpinning of male engagement work, how that has been brought to bear in practice and to what effect.
The curation of content below first appeared on ALIGN platform’s section on Men, boys and masculinities to build a knowledge base and bring together existing materials as well as resources on men and masculinities. This user-friendly knowledge resource on masculinities and gender norms includes toolkits, research papers and video narratives that could serve as useful resources for those working with men and boys, as they question non-equitable views about masculinity and develop more positive attitudes to prevent unhealthy behaviors that impact them, their health and their families.