How to build a modern man: Helping boys to grow up happy

Article here. Excerpt:

'When I ask my daughter about what being a woman in today’s world means to her, she talks about pride, possibility, hard-won freedoms. Her role models are women who fought for change in society. She is acutely aware of the challenge of growing up in a world where women are still seen through the reductive prism of the male gaze. Sadly, she has already experienced moments of feeling uncomfortable in public spaces, like her awareness of the men who stand a bit too close when she’s at the lights, waiting to cross the road. But she is proud to be a woman and bright-eyed about the future.

When I ask my son the same question about being a man in today’s world, he starts by telling me a list of all the things he knows men shouldn’t be. This list includes, but is not confined to, being sexist, violent, bullying harassing or trolling anyone.
Dr Aisling Swaine, professor of gender studies at University College Dublin who was named by A-Political as one the world’s 100 most influential people in gender policy 2021, worries that even the notion of a “good man” is fraught, and risks setting up another binary. “It suggests there are good men and bad men. That alienates men, making them feel they have to fit into one or other box, and if they’re not quite sure which one they might be perceived to be in, then how to engage. We need to maintain the space for women to voice and make visible things that are realities in their lives. But we also need a conversation around where masculinities and behaviours come into it.”'

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