Featuring conversations that shed light on key data, evidence-based approaches, and action steps to build healthy masculinity and achieve gender equality.

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Happy end of the year! As we wrap up 2020, we reflect on a year in which, despite uncertainties and setbacks, Promundo and partner’s research, programs, and advocacy work have positively contributed to ever-growing conversations around healthy masculinities and gender equality in the media.

Over the last year, Promundo and partners have supported evolving narratives when it comes to envisioning the future of gender policy; rethinking how employers can support parents and caregivers at work; shedding more light on the psychology of men’s sexual harassment; presenting a way forward for male partnership for gender equality; and more.

We have highlighted a featured article for each month of 2020, mentioning Promundo and our initiatives:

January: Apolitical quotes Margaret Greene, Promundo Senior Advisor for Gender and Health, in “The 2020 Vision for Gender Policy.” (And don’t miss El Tiempo’s coverage of Instituto Promundo’s partnership with Uber, or the piece in Motherly “Parental Leave Alone Won’t Fix the Income Gender Gap — but Here’s What Does,” featuring State of the World’s Fathers). …


Facing the colonialist values upholding social and economic inequalities that undermine and disadvantage Black people around the world.

By Amílcar Sanatan, Promundo Writing Fellow: a writer and activist invested in political work to engage Caribbean men and boys in gender justice.

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Photo by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona on Unsplash

George Floyd was executed in the streets of Minneapolis. Young women and men throughout the state and country protested, under the banner “Black Lives Matter.” They braved the pandemic of COVID-19 to resist a more historical, institutionally set, and barbaric pandemic of racism. Black people suffer disproportionately from police violence. In the US, Black people are three times as likely to be killed by the police than white people. The 2018 murder of twenty-six-year-old St. …


What works to prevent men’s violence against women?

By Gary Barker, President & CEO, Promundo-US

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Photo by Michelle Ding on Unsplash

From November 25 to December 10, we join thousands of organizations around the world for the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence Campaign. It has been 20 years that the campaign has been active. It has also been more than 20 years that Promundo has worked in partnership, first in Brazil and then internationally, to build an evidence base that affirms this: we can prevent men’s violence against women and girls.

The solution to ending this violence starts with calling it what it is: men’s violence against women. Ending violence also means talking about shifting power, about changing harmful, sexist, and inequitable norms, and about ending impunity for those who perpetrate violence. It also requires understanding and affirming that men aren’t born violent, that violence is learned. Individual men must be held accountable for the violence they use against women and we must also challenge and break down the systems and structures, and understand the life experiences, that create cycles of men’s violence against women and girls. …


Being an ally is about making change, not being comfortable.

By Quentin Thomas, Promundo Writing Fellow: a public policy student and peer educator exploring the intersection between writing and social justice.

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Photo by Samantha Sophia on Unsplash

I remember during my sophomore year of high school when the protests in Ferguson were happening in the wake of Michael Brown’s murder at the hands of police. This was a formative moment for me as a young Black man coming into his own and developing his racial and political consciousness. I was definitely holding a lot of complicated feelings at the time, and so when I heard one of my peers say something along the lines of, “It’s important that we remember these are isolated incidents.” I was taken aback. While I trust that the intent of this statement was to comfort, it actually felt more like being gaslit and that my intense emotions at the time were invalid. …


Just like our jeans, our maleness can be thrown away and re-worked when they don't fit.

By Amílcar Sanatan, Promundo Writing Fellow: a writer and activist invested in political work to engage Caribbean men and boys in gender justice.

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Photo by Ben Berwers on Unsplash

Content warning from Promundo: This piece contains descriptions of violence.

“Be a man!”, said the police officer to my friend when he felt he didn’t speak clearly and loudly as he questioned him. The officer inquired about a fight that was going to take place on a Friday afternoon near my school. Higher up, boys occupied the sidewalks, stood in silent anticipation, in their uniforms, prepared for combat with iron bars, planks of wood, dog chains, bottles from the village parlor, and knives. …


“i buried myself somewhere but for the life of me daddy. i can’t remember where daddy. or what it means to be lost and found.”

By Keith F. Miller, Jr., Promundo Writing Fellow: an award-winning educator, storyteller, and artist-researcher dedicated to redefining masculinity and rediscovering the healing power of everyday intimate conversations

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Photo by J’Waye Covington on Unsplash

Content warning from Promundo: This piece contains descriptions of violence.

Reclaimer (instead of disclaimer): This is a story about witnessing and sharing my truth from lived experience, as a cisgender, Black, queer, male from the Deep South. …


Finding an ally’s perspective in Audre Lorde’s essay The Master’s Tools Will Never Dismantle the Master’s House

By SlamThePoet, Promundo Writing Fellow: a poet, producer, and facilitator interested in the individuals and communities that build and box us.

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Photo by Katy Groves

Which me will survive | all these liberations. — Lorde, “Who Said It Simple”, 1973

Allyship is inherently related to change. On one level, this is pretty obvious: allies want to help change someone else’s life for the better. But even a slightly effective allyship requires great changes in one’s own life. It’s my view that genuine, effective allyship must shake and reshape the very foundations of your identity. Many cis-men believe in the importance of fighting sexism, but struggle to act on this belief.¹ Perhaps it is precisely their manhood itself that prevents them from doing so. …


“If all you have is a Hammer, everything looks like Nails.”

By SlamThePoet, Promundo Writing Fellow: a poet, producer, and facilitator interested in the individuals and communities that build and box us.

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Illustration: Sam Petherbridge

The Man is born fully clothed, with Hammers for hands. He wears boots, a jacket, and in his sleeves he has no wrists. He has no palms, no fingers, nor thumbs, only long steel handles ending with a Hammer. On one side, long forked hooks stretch out like claws. On the other there is a pummel, its steel face flattened and hard.

His father holds him and he is cold. His mother holds him and he is hard. His sister doesn’t dare touch him. His brothers mock him when she does. He keeps his toys in a padlocked room. He swaggers with stiff shoulders through a garden that is full of grey walls. …


By Clara Alemann, Director of Programs, Promundo

Photo by Dimitar Belchev on Unsplash
Photo by Dimitar Belchev on Unsplash
Photo by Dimitar Belchev on Unsplash

While we are all being asked to stay at home across the globe — if we are able to, under the assumption that this is the safest place to endure this pandemic and avoid broader contagion — some people seem to forget that homes are not safe for many women and children.

As we are all anxiously trying to follow the rapidly evolving news about the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and to understand how we can protect our families and other members of our communities, we also know, as has now been widely documented, that another invisible pandemic is silently affecting thousands of women and children worldwide. In the current COVID-19 outbreak, at the end of March 2020, reports from Australia, Brazil, China, France, Spain, Italy, the United Kingdom and the United States suggest a significant increase in violence against women (VAW) and violence against children (VAC). …


Parental leave is not just the right thing to do — it’s also the smart thing to do

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This article is written by Katja Iversen, President and CEO of Women Deliver and Gary Barker, President and CEO, Promundo, a gender equality NGO, and Sunny Jain, President Beauty & Personal Care, Unilever.

A woman’s most important role is to take care of the home and cook for the family.

Do you agree? Strongly agree? If so, you are not alone. In fact, when the gender-equality NGO Promundo and their partners asked this question in a survey in 29 countries, a majority of respondents of any gender in 24 of the countries agreed with the statement.

As long as these attitudes hold strong, and are reinforced by policies and structures that place the responsibility of parenting and care only on women, we won’t achieve gender equality: at work, or at home. …

About

Promundo-US

Promundo works to advance gender equality by engaging men and boys in partnership with women, girls, and individuals of all gender identities.

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