Wednesday 10th June 2020 (12.30-2pm)
Dr Alan Dolan (CLL)
Men, masculinity and fatherhood
Fathers and fatherhood have attracted considerable interest among researchers, practitioners and policy makers. A significant amount of this work has focused on fathers’ increased involvement in the care of their children and apparent changes in fathering practice that incorporates more attentive and nurturing characteristics. However, men may be simultaneously impeded from participating in the care of their children by dominant forms of gender relations. This presentation explores the interconnections between masculine and fathering identities and the ways in which fathers as men negotiate this terrain. It is influenced by the study of men and masculinities that has contested the notion of ‘masculinity’ as an essentially fixed or unitary concept. The presentation is based on three different qualitative research projects; i) men’s experiences of infertility and their aim to become biological fathers, ii) men’s experiences of pregnancy and childbirth, iii) men’s experiences of a ‘dad’s only’ parenting programme. It also suggests how professionals may engage with fathers as men.