Boys Will Be Boys
Study on masculinity questions gender roles
Dr. Jonathan A. Allan says the contemporary definition of masculinity is unattainable, creating ‘angry white males’ and triggering men’s rights groups across North America.
To explore this concept, the BU professor was given a prestigious national appointment and $500,000 to continue his ground-breaking research into masculinity.
Dr. Allan has been named Tier II Canada Research Chair (CRC) in Queer Theory. Over the next five years, he will research the troubling ways in which bullying, phobias, and social anxieties impact and affect individuals and society.
“I am interested in the ways in which masculinity is set up to fail,”
says Dr. Allan, of BU’s Gender and Women’s Studies Program. “Our genders and sexualities affect and influence our daily lives, from the colour of shirt we might wear, to which bathroom we feel most comfortable using, to talking about bullying on the playground or in the boardroom. We live in a society that is openly questioning and exploring gender and sexuality, and it’s important that we all think about what this means.”
“In his role as Canada Research Chair in Queer Theory, Dr. Allan will ask timely questions about the ways in which masculinity informs homophobia, and how homophobia negotiates misogyny and masculinity,” says BU’s Acting Vice-President (Academic and Provost), Dr. Jonathan A. Allan says the contemporary definition of masculinity is unattainable, creating ‘angry white males’ and triggering men’s rights groups across North America. Dr. Heather Duncan. “His research contributes to ways in which the University, the local community and beyond can celebrate gender diversity.”
Dr. Allan’s first book, Reading from Behind, is a study of anality, gender, and affect. His current project, The Foreskin Archive, is a study of the foreskin that cuts across disciplinary divides and brings together literary and cultural studies, religious studies, the biomedical sciences, psychology and sociology, and a range of other disciplinary modes in its attempt to understand the foreskin. He is also at work on a third book, Masculinity’s Cruel Optimism: Archive and Affect, which will bring together affect theory and critical studies of men and masculinities.