Forthcoming Events

CROMM is planning a series of events for 2015 and 2016. Major events include the following:

CROMM also hosts a seminar series.

Conference: The Future of Fatherhood: What’s next in fathering practice and research?

Where fathers used to be marginally present in children’s lives, fatherhood programs and research have demonstrated the importance of involved fathers in children’s lives.  This conference aims to bring together researchers, practitioners, and those interested in fathering to explore fathering practice and research. What will the future of father research look like? What impact do fathers have? How can fathers be engaged in children’s lives? How do particular groups of men negotiate and experience parenting? How does fathering intersect with masculinity? How is fathering shaped by political, cultural, or institutional forces? These and other fathering topics will be addressed during the conference.

The conference will be held on November 7-8, 2016 on the campus of the University of Wollongong.

See the conference website here. A conference poster is available here.


Master Class: Working with Men for Gender Equality

Description: This two-day intensive workshop will train participants in working with men to build gender equality. It addresses and draws on the growing international field of work with men in relation to such areas as men’s violence against women, sexual and reproductive health, HIV/AIDS, and economic empowerment. The workshop is aimed at practitioners, advocates and educators, and others involved in programming and policy in these areas.

Date: Late 2016 or early 2017


Past Events & Seminars


Men as Allies: A Case Study of White Ribbon Australia’s Ambassador Program

Kenton Bell, May 18, 2016

Abstract: This research examines men’s role as allies to prevent men’s violence against women (MVAW) through a case study of White Ribbon Australia’s (WRA) Ambassador program. Specifically, this research explores why men become allies to prevent MVAW, what challenges they encounter, and how they overcome them. Through the combination of interviews and a survey, viewed through social movement and masculinity theory, a narrative of men’s development and involvements as allies will emerge. The practical knowledge gained from this research will contribute to increasing ally participation and efficacy within WRA as well as other antiviolence against women organisations, both nationally and internationally.

Kenton is a postgraduate at the University of Wollongong in the Department of Humanities and Social Inquiry.


Men are Animals: Category Politics and Biological Distress

Presenter: Matthew Gutmann
Date: Tuesday 5 August 2014
Time: 12:30pm – 2pm
Venue: Building 19, Room 2072B (Research Hub)
Promotional Flyer: Men are Animals: Category Politics and Biological Distress

“Men Are Animals” explores popular enthusiasm for putative scientific beliefs that men have minimal control over their sexual and violent “natures” and they must be managed and restrained, usually by societal restrictions, and by the women in their lives. Who equates men more with (non-human) animals – and why? When are women compared to non-human animals? Are men called animals because instinctual behavior is said to drive a particular human activity? This study examines gendered undercurrents in biological explanations about human behavior pervasive today in two distinct societies, China and Mexico, with reference throughout to the United States as well. A biological narrative is compelling to understand, for example, male sexuality and violence. Nonetheless it is more remarked upon than understood. Why analytic frames referencing heredity, genes, and hormones hold sway in the popular imaginary at this particular historical moment rests on more than simply the credibility of scientific discovery.

Mothers and Sons: Feminist Maternal Practice with Boys

Presenter: Sarah Epstein
Date: Wednesday 7 May 2014
Time: 12:30pm – 2pm
Venue: Building 40, Room 123
Promotional Flyer: Mothers and Sons: Feminist Maternal Practice with Boys

The relationship between mother and son is embedded within a wider patriarchal story about the nature of masculinity and the marginalisation of women: for her son to emerge a man, the mother must step back, displace herself and support her son to become as unlike her as possible. However, my interviews with self-identified mothers of sons show that in making a distinction between the boy, and the patriarchal story about the boy, a new story can emerge. The seminar will explore some of the key ideas feminist mothers engage with, about masculinity and motherhood, as they write new stories in their relationships with their sons.

Masculinities in the Post-socialist Context: The Role of Social Capital in Creating Intersectional Privilege in the Career Narratives of Estonian Male Managers

Presenter: Kadri Aavik
Date: Tuesday 4 March 2014
Time: 12:30 – 2pm
Venue: Building 24, Room G02
Promotional flyer: Masculinities in the Post-socialist Context: The Role of Social Capital in Creating Intersectional Privilege in the Career Narratives of Estonian Male Managers


Undoing privilege: the other side of challenging oppression

Presenter: Bob Pease
Date: Wednesday 21 August
Time: 12:30 – 2:00pm
Venue: Building 24, Room G01
Promotional Flyer: Undoing Privilege: The Other Side of Challenging Oppression

Abstract: To further a social justice agenda, progressive social movements focus attention on empowering those who aredisadvantaged, oppressed, excluded and discriminated against along the social divisions of class, race, gender,sexuality, disability and so on. However, those who are privileged in relation to gender, class, race and sexuality etc are often ‘let off the hook’ in these approaches. This paper will argue that undoing privilege is the other side of challenging oppression. It will address the following questions: What is privilege and how is it manifested? What are the reasons for resistance among members of privileged groups to social justice issues and how do we motivate them to support the interests of subordinate groups? To what extent can those who are privileged overcome their own self interest in the maintenance of privilege to enable them to challenge it? How do we interrogate privilege without recentring it? The paper will outline strategies for undoing privilegeas part of an expanded framework for social justice-based social movements. Professor Bob Pease is Chair of Social Work at Deakin University in Australia.

Brotherhood: Military Masculinities and Trouble in the Ranks

Presenter: Ben Wadham
Date: Wednesday 7 August
Time: 12.30 – 2.00pm
Venue: Building 19, Room 2040
Promotional Flyer: Brotherhood: Military Masculinities and Trouble in the Ranks

Abstract: The Australian Defence Force has been marred by public scandals over its 100 year history. These scandals often involve groups of men engaging in practices that objectify or violate women and others. Despite the dominant, instrumental and rapaciously hetero-normative masculinity of the soldier these practices also often include homosocial and homoerotic practices. The most recent being the example being ADFA cadets engaging in undressing to Eagle Rock and longer serving cadets forcing initiates to kiss their genitals. This paper explores the social and cultural relations within which these group based activities occur.

Ben Wadham is a sociologist within the School of Education, Flinders University.

Being a good lover: Exploring heterosexual men’s narratives of troubled and untroubled heterosexual practices

Presenter: Hanna Bertilsdotter-Rosqvist
Date: Wednesday 24 July
Time: 12.30 – 2.00pm
Venue: Building 19, Room 2061
Promotional Flyer: Being a good lover: Exploring heterosexual men´s narratives of troubled and untroubled heterosexual practices

Abstract: Heterosexual men´s talk about their sexual practices have not been studied to the same extent as heterosexual women’s (Mooney-Somers & Ussher, 2008). This is despite the commonality of representations, both in everyday life to cultural venues and media purposes, of male (hetero) sexuality, and of research on heterosexual masculinity. Most researchers also believe that heterosexuality and masculinity are inextricably linked (Holland et al, 1994). The presentation is based on a study exploring how eight Swedish middle-class men in their 20s use different culturally available repertoires of male heterosexuality, with a particular focus on repertoires of heterosexual encounters. All participants have grown up and been young in a time when gender equality has been a dominating norm within the Swedish society. What masculine subject positions appear in the men’s stories? What sexual experiences are described as important and desirable?

Hanna Bertilsdotter-Rosqvist is an Associate Professor in Sociology at Umeå University, Sweden. She now holds a position as senior lecturer at the Department of Social Work. Her research interests in-clude autism politics and identity constructions among adults with autism. Other areas of interest are homonormativity, repre-sentations of bisexuality, and intersecting notions of age, space and sexuality.

Men and boys in “green and yellow”? Gender and masculinities studies in Brazil

Presenter: Adriano Senkevics
Date: Tuesday 16th April, all welcome
Time: 12:30pm – 2:00pm
Venue: Building 4, Room G31

Abstract: Masculinity, as a research field, is globally widespread, and its studies bring many diverse contributions to understand the variety of men and boys around the world. In Brazil, it is not different. However, this research field is very uneven through distinctive areas and is characterized, in general, by a fragility of a Brazilian theoretical framework and a weak Latin-American articulation. Considering that, this seminar intends to discuss the state of gender and masculinities research in Brazil: which are our main influences, works and contributions – beyond men and boys in “green and yellow” – in order to comprehend the diversity of masculinities.

Adriano Senkevics is a Masters student at the Faculty of Education, University of São Paulo, Brazil.


Conference on engaging men in building gender equality

The Centre for Research on Men and Masculinities (CROMM) rhosted a highly successful conference at UOW on men and gender, titled “Engaging Men in Building Gender Equality”. See here for a brief report.

Identity Work as Material Practice: Men, Masculinities and the Private Military Contractor

Presenter: Paul Higate
When & Where: Wednesday 16 May, Building 19, Room 1003

In recent years, the rapid growth of the Private Military and Security sector into a multi-billion dollar industry has stimulated interest from political scientists, IR theorists, security studies and military studies scholars. Here, debates have touched on concerns of regulation, questions of domestic sovereignty and the moral and ethical dimensions of the commodification of security. Yet, despite discursive and state-level analyses by critical scholars of gender claiming that the industry can be seen as an exemplary moment of remasculinization, there remains little in the way of ethnographically informed, thick description of the actual practices of contractors on the ground. Drawing on qualitative interviews and field research in Kabul, the U.S and the UK, in this presentation I argue that one way in which to explain the insecurity created by some contractors resides in the modes of masculinity they adopt. Framing masculinity as a form of identity work, I consider tensions between hypermasculine identity work and operational effectiveness. In sum, and as a key element of a broader book project I ask the question: What makes these identities and their allied practices possible? This question sparks a line of enquiry that tracks back through the history of masculine subjectivities in the UK and U.S contexts as one way to explain how contractors both imagine and practice security on the ground.

Paul Higate’s research has been concerned with the gendered culture of the military, in particular military masculinities. Relatedly, he has worked on issues of SEA in peacekeeping missions, the transition from military to civilian life and most recently, Private and Military Security Companies.

He is editor of Military Masculinities: Identity and the State and numerous articles. He is currently a Fellow of the ESRC/AHRC Global Uncertainties Programme with a project entitled: Mercenary Masculinities Imagine Security: The case of the Private Military Contractor’. Findings from the project have been published in Millennium and Globalizations and are forthcoming in International Political Sociology and the International Journal of Feminist Politics.

Violence and carceral masculinities in Felony Fights

Presenter: Michael Salter
When & Where: Wednesday 23 May, Building 19, Room 1003

Over the last twenty years, the sensual attractions of what Katz (1988) influentially called the ‘pleasures of evil’ have been commodified and repackaged in a new media environment. With the development of technologies such as pay-per-view television and the internet, this trend has come to include depictions of violence between men that exceed the formal and informal regulation associated with combat sports. Sadistic and voyeuristic interests that were previously sublimated in cultural life are now more openly nurtured in these representations. Felony Fights is an American website and set of DVDs depicting real combat between male former convicts and other men. This presentation will consider the ways in which this male violence and criminality are represented and observed and explores how this may or may not intersect with a prevailing culture of punitiveness. Viewer responses to these clips reflect a complexity of meanings, projections and symbolic associations between violence, power and masculine identities.

Michael Salter is a lecturer in criminology at the University of Western Sydney. His work is focused on the intersections of gendered violence, health and culture. He is particularly interested in questions of trauma and testimony as they relate to crimes against children and women as well as the cultural significance of violence. His book on organised child sexual abuse is due to be released later this year from Routledge, and articles on the criminological dynamics of severe sexual abuse are forthcoming in Violence Against Women, Child Abuse Review and the Journal of Mental Health. Current research projects are focused on gender, violence and technology, and include a study of the criminalization of young people’s sexual use of digital and online technology under child pornography legislation, and theorizing the overlap between the military, law enforcement and the video/computer gaming industry.


Here, give us a look! Sexting and male homosociality in a social media context

Through an examination of the 2011 Australian Defence Force webcam scandal, this paper looks at male homosocial bonding in institutionalised contexts and the role that technology can play in facilitating this bonding. Expanding on research around shared sexual story telling as a form of male bonding and sexual socialisation (and initiation) this paper also looks at how “sexting” and the sharing of sexualised images between male peers can heighten male bonding through problematic processes which hinge on female victimization and exploitation.

Presenter: Nina Funnell
When & where: Wednesday 10 August, 12pm –  2pm, Building 19, Room G016
Download the flyer: Here, give us a look! Sexting and male homosociality in a social media context

Workshop on scholarship on men, masculinities and gender

The Centre for Research on Men and Masculinities recently held a highly successful two-day workshop on the state of play in the critical study of men and masculinities. The workshop, held over March 17 and 18 in Wollongong, highlighted the state of scholarship on men and gender, fostered research links and potential collaborations among researchers at UOW and around the country, and launched the Centre as a hub for masculinities-related research around Australia.

See here for a full report on the workshop.