In Liberating Masculinities, Kopano Ratele posits that all masculinities are working models, and some models might be more unworkable given the prevailing structural conditions. The more models of masculinity we have access to, the higher the likelihood that some will be workable, even liberating. Instead of a singular, ahistorical and property that comes with having a penis, the book opens up a view where masculinities are culturally constructed relational models. Covering a range of topics, from clothes and violent death, through a better sexual life and tradition, to race and feminism, Liberating Masculinities presents ways to understand the contestations around masculinity and gender relations. Ratele offers both theoretically rich and psychologically insightful analyses to liberate men, as well as those who are involved in the making of men, from oppressive and injurious models of masculinity.
Kopano Ratele is Professor in the Institute for Social and Health Sciences at the University of South Africa (Unisa)and researcher in the South African Medical Research Council–Unisa Violence, Injury and Peace Research Unit. Best known for his work on men and masculinity – specifically in relation to violence, race, sexualities, and tradition – he has published a number of books, scholarly essays, research papers, and shorter pieces on a range of psychological, cultural and social topics. His list of publications included the co–edited book 'From Boys to Men: Social Constructions of Masculinities in Contemporary Society'; 'Inter–group Relations: South African Perspectives'; and "There Was This Goat", co–authored with Nosisi Mpolweni and Antjie Krog. He is a past president of the Psychological Society of South Africa, and the incumbent chairperson of the board of Sonke Gender Justice.
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