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Pease, Bob (2005) – Researching Profeminist Men’s Narratives – Participatory Methodologies in a Postmodern Frame


Postmodern feminism has important implications for understanding and promoting change in men’s lives, as well as women’s lives. In recent years I have been exploring the implications of the relationship between postmodernism and feminism for emancipatory practice with men. I have argued elsewhere that a recognition of differences between men is central for understanding men’s lives and for reconstructing men’s subjectivities and practices (Pease, 1999a). I have also argued that the postmodern notion of the discursive production of multiple subjectivities has considerable potential for providing guidance to men about how their subjectivities and practices have been constituted and how they can be transformed (Pease, 1999b).

In this chapter I will outline some of the methodological and theoretical issues arising from doing research, within a postmodern frame, on the subjectivities and practices of profeminist men. Only a few heterosexual men have moved beyond personal change processes to search for a collective politics of gender among men and have recognised that they need to speak out against men’s violence against women. Promoting collective responsibility among men to end men’s violence is a central principle of many profeminist men’s public practice. Profeminist men have been involved in the prevention of rape, speaking out against pornography, working to end men’s violence in the home, opposing the military and organising in support of women’s reproductive freedom. These attempts to develop a counter-sexist politics of heterosexual masculinity have been largely confined to middle-class men and there is much to be done to relate profeminism to the experiences of working-class men. Nevertheless, profeminism for men is one of the major forms of resistance to dominant masculinity.

-Excerpt from Text, p. 138–39.


Pease, Bob. 2005. “Researching Profeminist Men’s Narratives: Participatory Methodologies in a Postmodern Frame.” Pp. 138–61 in Practice and Research in Social Work: Postmodern Feminist Perspectives, edited by B. Fawcett, B. Featherstone, J. Fook, and A. Rossiter. doi:10.4324/9780203981979-15.




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