• What is the Men’s Center?
    • The Men’s Center strives to create spaces and events where people of all genders and identities can work collectively towards reconstructing masculinity in a social justice-oriented manner. We aim to raise awareness about the intersections of men’s health issues and social justice issues, and ways that men can play a more active role in ending oppression.  We are a student group that is funded through ASUO and we work on weekly, annual and one time events around our ideals.
  • What is “toxic masculinity”?
    • A simple google search will tell you that hegemonic masculinity is defined as “the current configuration of practice that legitimizes men’s dominant position in society and justifies the subordination of women, and other marginalized ways of being a man.” But what exactly does that mean? When you break it down, the definition is saying that there is a current system of power in our society that places men in positions of power over women, often referred to as the patriarchy, and that hegemonic masculinity is anything that supports that. The definition also says that toxic masculinity is in support of women being subordinate to men and that even within itself, men with marginalized identities (any race, gender, sexuality, class, etc. that in some way gives privilege) may also be subordinate.
  • Why do we need to act against toxic masculinity? 
    • While we can agree that masculinity is not inherently toxic, that doesn’t mean that we should ignore the masculine traits that are toxic. And by toxic, we mean that these aspects of masculinity are not only harmful to those who are on the receiving end of it (women, children, men who fall into marginalized categories, etc.), but it also has dangerous side effects to those men who are directly involved.Some examples of toxic masculinity are rape culture, outbursts of anger, emotional repression, and the view of women as anything other than complete equals. These aspects of masculinity make others feel unsafe. For example, women often don’t feel safe walking alone at night, or even in the day when men engage in catcalling, physical touch without consent, and even just very obviously looking a woman up and down.
  • How can we all participate in reconstructing masculinity?
    • Check yourself. Are you possibly doing things that buy into toxic masculinity? These things might not even be actions that you are doing. Maybe you are not allowing yourself to feel emotions, or internally viewing yourself as having to be strong at all times.
    • Listen to others. If someone tells you that something you are doing makes them uncomfortable or is harmful to them, listen. Listen to men who have narratives that have experienced oppression under masculinity. It is not your place to tell them that their feelings are invalid. Remember everyone sees the world differently.
    • Check others. Do you notice someone being predatory, or actively harassing a person?Bystander intervention is crucial to deconstructing the masculinity currently present in our society.
  • How Can I get involved with The Men’s Center? 
    • Come by the Men’s Center on the second floor of the EMU and you can talk with a team member about getting involved, email the center, or join us for MOST Club and discussion hour weekly!
  • What is MOST Club? 
    • MOST Club or Men of Strength is a college outreach program of sexual violence prevention organization, “Men Can Stop Rape”. There are meetings weekly Thursdays at 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm in Straub 253 and our Chapter welcomes, encourages and invites people of all genders and identities. Here at the University of Oregon, the MOST club is a weekly club that meets to discuss different topics that involve, interlace, affect or is affected by the traditional culture of masculinity. Different weeks will have different discussion topics, activities, or films to watch.
  • I want to learn more. What are some resources? 
    • The Mask You Live In is a documentary about the effects of toxic masculinity on men. It really highlights the narrow definition of masculinity in America and how that is harmful to boys and young men as they grow and develop.  Available on Netflix.
    • Breaking the Male Code is a book that speaks on the toll that masculinity takes on men’s psyche, as well as how male friendships can help with the effects of emotional repression, anger, and silence.