Table of Contents

Handbook on Gender and Health

Handbook on Gender and Health

International Handbooks on Gender series

Edited by Jasmine Gideon

This Handbook brings together a groundbreaking collection of chapters that uses a gender lens to explore health, healthcare and health policy in both the Global South and North. Empirical evidence is drawn from a variety of different settings and points to the many ways in which the gendered dimensions of health have become reworked across the globe.

Chapter 25: Emergent masculinities, men’s health and the Movember movement

Sara Smith and Marcia C. Inhorn

Subjects: development studies, family and gender policy, social policy and sociology, family and gender policy, health policy and economics


As men’s health practices change in light of new medicines, technologies and health awareness campaigns, so do the manifold ways in which men conceive of themselves as men. Men’s increasing engagements with health campaigns that promote awareness of male reproductive cancers and mental health issues signal the emergence of novel forms of manhood. To grasp how men newly embody and enact their gendered identities as masculine subjects, the authors explicate the hegemonic, emergent and composite approaches that are central tropes in masculinity studies. They pursue these masculinity theories through an ethnographic case study of men’s involvement in Movember, a relatively new men’s health movement focused on changing men’s attitudes and behaviors toward prostate and testicular cancer. Based on ethnographic research conducted on men’s participation in Movember via the Internet, the authors demonstrate that men are embracing new strategies for well-being through a diverse repertoire of forms of self-care, including testicular self-exams and clinical prostate cancer screening. Understood as a social domain where multiple discourses about well-being and masculinity intersect, they argue that men’s health movements are increasingly transforming social relations among men, as well as conceptions of manhood in relation to men’s health.

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