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Special Collection: Men and Boys: Preventing Sexual and Intimate Partner Violence

Table of Contents:



This collection was developed by the National Sexual Violence Resource Center and the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence.

Introduction | Back to top

Movements to end sexual violence and intimate partner violence have established a long history of grassroots and institutional advocacy. Rooted in feminist practice and philosophies, this work increased the capacity to recognize, respond to, address, and prevent violence against women. Data gathered from the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS) suggests that all forms of interpersonal violence have a profound impact on a large number of people, both women and men, throughout the United States (NISVS, 2011). Continuing to build and expand this movement will allow us to increase our ability to address this widespread violence and work toward a just and equitable future.

Anti-violence organizations and programs have historically been established by and operated by and for women. By creating spaces where women exposed to intimate partner and sexual violence could find safety, support, and healing, founding members of these movements established effective practices and community-based activism. In the process of creating these needed spaces, some communities have been excluded or marginalized. For example, men and boys, as survivors of violence and activists/allies working to end violence, have not always felt welcomed in by anti-violence programs. In some cases, the caution about limiting the participation of men and boys is rooted in the feminist identity of an organization (Maier, 2008) or by the real experience of men trying to access these programs for the purpose of continuing to perpetrate violence against a partner. However, as the movement grew, more anti-violence programs recognized that in order to best meet the needs of the community and their own social change goals, it is necessary to draw a balance between the priorities of 1) honoring the history, principles, and gender-based social analysis upon which programs are built, and 2) building an inclusive organization with the capacity to move the mission of ending violence forward. As part of the growth of these movements, we’ve shifted in the way we understand prevention. Expanding beyond risk reduction as our main prevention strategy, we now embrace primary prevention strategies as well. Primary prevention involves changing the culture of violence, addressing the root causes of oppression, and creating spaces where violence is not tolerated. It is clear that working with men and boys is an important part of primary prevention efforts.

To reach an appropriate balance and to most effectively address some of the root causes of violence, anti-violence programs can increase their capacity to engage men in the work to end violence. Resources included in this collection, compiled by NSVRC and NRCDV staff, will help to inform programs about how they can begin to increase capacity to work with men and boys. To recommend additional resources, please contact us.

Maier, S. L. (2008). Are Rape Crisis Centers Feminist Organizations? Feminist Criminology, 3, 82-100. doi:10.1177/1557085107310623

Addressing the root causes of sexual and intimate partner violence | Back to top

In doing this work, we have come to understand sexism and its intersections with racism, classism, and other forms of oppression to be at the root of sustaining and perpetuating violence against women. This section explores the social construction of masculinity and the impact that pro-feminist men can have on challenging these norms and advancing the anti-violence movement.
Men, anti-violence movements, and feminism
  • Tony Porter: A Call to Men | HTML HTML [11:14]
    by Tony Porter for TEDWomen (December 2010)
    In this video, Tony Porter presents the idea of the man-box. This notion of the construction of masculinity limits men, promotes the devaluation of women, and creates a harmful notion of manhood.
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  • Is Feminism Men's Work, too? | PDF PDF ( p.)
    by Mandy Van Deven, Herizons Magazine, Vol. 23, No. 2 (Fall 2009)
    This article discusses the importance of developing and fostering a pro-feminist generation of boys and men. This work is critical in disrupting misogyny and sexism.
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  • Engaging Men in "Women's Issues": Inclusive Approaches to Gender and Development | PDF PDF (48 p.)
    from Critical Half, Volume 5, Number 1, Women for Women International (Winter 2007)
    This issue explores how men can be engaged to support and promote women's rights and thus help to establish gender equitable societies.
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  • Men Speak Up: A toolkit for action in men's daily lives | PDF PDF (30 p.)
    by Michael Flood for the White Ribbon Campaign (2011)
    This report outlines goals for men's action, identifies how speaking up and activism make a difference, explores what men can do, notes the strategies with which to nourish personal strength, support and inspiration, and acknowledges the mistakes it is easy to make.
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  • Where Men Stand: Men's roles in ending violence against women | PDF PDF (26 p.)
    by Michael Flood for the White Ribbon Campaign (2010)
    This report describes how many men use violence against women, what men think about violence against women, and what role men can and do play in reducing and preventing this violence.
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  • Tough Talk: What boys need to know about relationship abuse | PDF PDF (7 p.)
    by Liz Claiborne, Inc.
    Created to help men start a conversation with the boys in their lives about developing and maintaining positive relationships, this booklet defines abuse, provides practical guidelines and tips for starting a dialogue, and lists additional resources.
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  • The Men's Movement of Choice | PDF PDF ( p.)
    by Kathleen Carlin for Men Stopping Violence (1992)
    This commentary offers one woman's response to men in the movement to end domestic violence.
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  • Global Symposium on Engaging Men and Boys in Achieving Gender Equality Summary Report | PDF PDF (67 p.)
    by Lucille C. Atkin with support from Gary Barker, Christine Ricardo, Marcos Nascimento and Gabriela Azevedo de Aguiar (2010)
    This summary outlines the purposes and themes of the multi-day discussion that took place in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Themes from the report include how to address men's violence against women and children, issues related to sexuality and gender identity, and other gender equity issues.
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  • What Men Can Do & What Young Men Can Do | PDF PDF (1 p.) | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    by Men Can Stop Rape
    These information sheets discuss some practical ways that men and young men (middle school aged) can be involved in stopping violence and changing social norms.
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Traditional masculinities
The Healthy Masculinity Action Project (HMAP) is a two-year action project to spread the message of healthy, non-violent masculinity across the country by developing new male leadership that role models strength without violence. This October 17 – 19 in Washington, DC the Healthy Masculinity Summit will will mark the beginning of the Healthy Masculinity Action Project, bringing together facilitators to lead conversations about healthy masculinity, including how it relates to the prevention of domestic and sexual violence.
  • The Construction of Masculinity and the Triad of Men's Violence | PDF PDF (15 p.)
    by Michael Kaufman, reprinted from Beyond Patriarchy: Essays on Pleasure, Power, and Change (1987)
    This article discusses the concept of surplus repression and how it tends to lead to surplus aggression in males. It also addresses the fact that traditional masculinity can lead men to commit violence not only against women, but against other men, and themselves too.
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  • The Search for Masculinity | HTML HTML
    by PBS
    This series of articles suggests ways to shape positive masculinity in boys when they are surrounded by "rules" of boy life. "We should talk with boys about the reality of gender expectations, and help them brainstorm about how to negotiate this problem."
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  • Tough Guise: Masculinity and Violence | HTML HTML
    by Dr. Sut Jhally for Pacific Lutheran University
    This video is a keynote address exploring masculinity and violence.
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  • Tough Guise: Violence, Media & the Crisis in Masculinity | HTML HTML
    by the Media Education Foundation (1999)
    This 7 minute clip from the full-length educational film introduces the impact of media culture on social constructions of masculinity.
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  • Issue Brief: Men and Boys | PDF PDF (5 p.)
    by Independent Television Service (ITVS)
    This article addresses the issue of masculinity as defined through violence and aggression in our culture, and the impact that this has on men and boys.
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  • Parental Influence on Children's Socialization to Gender Roles | HTML HTML (4 p.)
    by Susan D. Witt, University of Akron for Adolescence (Summer 1997)
    This article describes how the strongest influence on gender role development occurs within the family setting, suggesting that an androgynous gender role orientation may be more beneficial to children than teaching adaptation to binary gender roles.
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  • Raise Respectful Boys...Not Macho Men | PDF PDF (2 p.)
    by Claudia Liliana Campos for Hablemos en Confianza
    This article provides tips for parents and caretakers on how to resist traditional gender norms and raise healthier, happier sons and daughters. Specifically, the focus is on strategies for raising respectful boys.
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The intersections of race, class, and gender
  • Masculinities, power and change | PDF PDF (14 p.)
    by Jorgen Lorentzen for the Nordic Journal for Masculinity Studies, Volume 6, Issue 2 (2011)
    This article presents some of the main findings that most researchers within critical studies on men will agree on, and then it discusses how to better understand men's relationship to power and marginalization, change and gender equality in future research.
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  • The Masculinity Conversations: An Interview with Dr. Rachel Griffin on Masculinity and Race | HTML HTML
    by Patrick McGann for Men Can Stop Rape (2012)
    This conversation with Rachel Griffin, Ph.D. is split into two parts. Part 1 focuses primarily on her research concerning Black masculinity and the NBA. Part 2 continues the conversation about race and masculinity and delves into the figure of the Black nerd.
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  • Masculinity at the Intersections: An exploration of hegemony, oppression, performance and self-authorship | PDF PDF (4 p.)
    by Vern Koblassa and Tracy L. Davis
    This brief article discussed literature and qualitative data on the construction of masculinity as a social identity and how to incorporate this knowledge into social justice work with college men.
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  • Engaging Boys to Stop Violence: A step-by-step guide for initiating social change | PDF PDF (43 p.)
    by Laxman Belbase, Turid Heiberg & Gemma Pillars, Save the Children Sweden (2010)
    This step-by-step guide provides practical steps explaining how to go about engaging boys and men as partners to stop the violence against boys and girls, women and other men.
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  • The Seven P's of Men's Violence | PDF PDF (5 p.)
    by Michael Kaufman (October 1999)
    This article describes the components that make up and contribute to men's violence. Patriarchy, Privilege, Permission, and Pressure, among others, comprise this description of men's violence, hierarchies, and social constructions.
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Information for domestic and sexual violence programs | Back to top

Anti-violence movements primarily grew out of the feminist movements of white, middle-class women in the 1960's and 70's, known also as the Women's Liberation Movement or Second Wave Feminist Movement. Expanding this framework continues to impact these movements and engage new communities in a more inclusive way. This section explores the benefits of making programs more inclusive, information on capacity assessment, and guidance on overcoming challenges and barriers to engaging and serving men and boys.

Understanding the benefits of working with men and boys
  • Involving Men in Efforts to End Violence Against Women | PDF PDF (20 p.)
    by Michael Flood in Men and Masculinities, Volume 14, Number 3 (2011)
    Around the world, there are growing efforts to involve boys and men in the prevention of violence against women. This article provides a review of the variety of initiatives, which engage or address men to prevent violence against women.
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  • Fact Sheet 3: The positive roles that men can play | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    by the White Ribbon Campaign
    This fact sheet explains the crucial role that men have in stopping rape and violence and addresses how men will benefit from such a commitment.
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  • Fact Sheet 4: What can men do? | PDF PDF (2 p.)
    by the White Ribbon Campaign
    This fact sheet lists ten practical things that men can do to help end violence against women.
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  • 10 Things Men Can Do To End Men's Violence Against Women | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    by A Call to Men (2004)
    This 1-pager provides guidance to men who are looking for ways to challenge and help end violence against women, including self-examination and peer education.
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  • Ending Men's Violence Against Women | PDF PDF (5 p.)
    by Ted Bunch for A Call to Men (2005)
    In this article, the author discusses how men of color, while being marginalized by racism, continue to experience the privileges and the entitlements associated with being a male. The article also discusses how men can become part of the solution.
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  • Let's Stop Violence Before It Starts: Using primary prevention strategies to engage men, mobilize communities, and change the world (Workshop notes) | PDF PDF (53 p.)
    by Michael Flood, XY Online (July 2011)
    This document represents the text of a one-day workshop presented by Dr Michael Flood, hosted by the women's organization Soroptimist International.
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  • Issue Brief: Engaging Men and Boys to Reduce and Prevent Gender-Based Violence | PDF PDF (43 p.)
    by Todd Minerson, Humberto Carolo, Tuval Dinner, and Clay Jones of The White Ribbon Campaign - Canada for Status of Women Canada (April 2011)
    The paper examines root causes of gender-based violence, including socialization of men, power and patriarchy, masculinities, and gender inequality. Also included are promising strategies, best practices, and effective frameworks for engaging men and boys in the effort to reduce and prevent gender-based violence with a focus on Canada.
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  • Engaging Boys and Men in Gender Transformation: The Group Education Manual | PDF PDF (358 p.)
    by the ACQUIRE Project (2008)
    This 11-chapter manual will offer trainers an array of participatory experiential exercises to reach men (and their partners), exploring gender socialization and its impact on HIV prevention and care.
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  • Ending Gender-Based Violence: A call for global action to involve men | PDF PDF (132 p.)
    by Harry Ferguson, Jeff Hearn, Oystein Gullvag Holter, Lars Jalmert, Michael Kimmel, James Lang and Robert Morrell, published by the Swedish Agency for International Development Cooperation, Sida (2004)
    7 masculinity researchers write about masculinity and its link to violence around the world, suggesting ways in which men can be involved in combatting violence. This summary of research includes the Appendix, "Costs of Male Violence" by Stefan de Vylder.
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  • Is Feminism Men's Work, too? | PDF PDF (9 p.)
    by Mandy Van Deven, Herizons Magazine, Vol. 23, No. 2 (Fall 2009)
    This article discusses the importance of developing and fostering a pro-feminist generation of boys and men. This work is important in disrupting misogyny and sexism.
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  • Rape as a Men's Issue | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    by Men Can Stop Rape (1998)
    This one-page information sheet provides a brief over-view of the many reasons why men should become involved in anti-sexual violence work.
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Is my program ready for this?
  • Guide to Engaging Men and Boys in Preventing Violence Against Women & Girls | PDF PDF (199 p.)
    by the Men's Nonviolence Project of the Texas Council on Family Violence
    This guide reviews actions groups and individuals are taking in their communities to engage men and boys in ending violence against women and girls. It encourages readers to move beyond this point and imagine what can be.
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  • Policy approaches to engaging men and boys in achieving gender equality and health equity | PDF PDF (42 p.)
    by the World Health Organization (July 2010)
    This policy brief discusses the importance of developing and implementing policies to engage men in achieving gender equality and reducing health disparities. While it deals largely with issues related to disease and other health issues, the rationale and framework may be useful in developing internal policies and advocating for broader policy-driven social change.
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  • Organizing to End Violence Against Women: Putting Principles Into Practice | PDF PDF (23 p.)
    by Dick Bathrick, Ulester Douglas, Khaatim S. El, Phyllis Alesia Perry, and Malkia S. White
    This document presents and discusses basic organizing principles for engaging men in ending violence against women.
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  • Men Can Stop Rape's Core Values | PDF PDF (2 p.)
    by Men Can Stop Rape (2011)
    This page presents the core values for the organization Men Can Stop Rape and may serve as a sample set of values for consideration.
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  • Working with Men and Boys to End Domestic Violence | PDF PDF (24 p.)
    by Julia Perilla for the National Latino Alliance for the Elimination of Domestic Violence (Alianza)
    This position paper on working with men and boys delineates the principles with Alianza approaches this task, based on the belief that the eradication of domestic violence requires the ongoing and committed participation of both Latinas and Latinos.
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  • Regional capacity building workshop on men, caring and fatherhood: Engaging men as partners in healthier families | PDF PDF (75 p.)
    by Save the Children Sweden, UNIFEM South Asia, and Instituto PROMUNDO Brazil (2006)
    This workshop report describes the deliberations and outcomes of a meeting of development professionals from Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan and Sweden, who discussed how to equip men and boys to become more caring, attentive and gender sensitive fathers and husbands, in turn helping themselves, their families and the society at large.
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  • Organizing Men to Stop Men's Violence Against Women: A Possible Five-Step Plan | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    (1 p.)
    by Ben Atherton-Zeman
    The author of this document serves as a spokesperson for the National Organization for Men Against Sexism. He provides suggestions for how to actively engage men in violence prevention work using five concrete steps.
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Addressing challenges and barriers to working with men and boys

The resources provided below discuss the challenges and barriers that anti-violence programs may face when involving or including men as partners/allies or in leadership. Recommendations and considerations for positive inclusivity are provided. Service provision to male victims is beyond the scope of this collection, however you can find resources to support this work on VAWnet under male victims, child sexual abuse, and children exposed to domestic violence.

  • Partners in Social Change Newsletter: Engaging Men | PDF PDF (16 p.)
    by Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs (WCSAP), Sexual Assault Prevention Resource Center (Summer 2011)
    Involving men in the movement to end sexual violence poses unique challenges. Articles in this newsletter discuss men's accountability in the movement, engaging queer and trans men, and features a collective statement by a university men's group.
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  • Violence Shelter Considers Hiring Male Director | HTML HTML (1 p.)
    by Courtney E. Martin for Womens eNews (August 2005)
    One of the country's oldest shelters has opened a gender-neutral search for a new executive director and hired a man to run the organization in the interim. Some feminists call the move a violation of the founding principles to protect women.
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  • Outside In: A Man in the Movement | PDF PDF (6 p.)
    by Richard Orton (1993)
    Over the past 3 decades the role of men in the anti-sexual violence movement has been a source of debate. This article shares experiences of one of the first men to be employed at rape crisis center and its effect on his worldview.
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  • Aspiring Social Justice Ally Identity Development: A Conceptual Model | PDF PDF (22 p.)
    by Keith E. Edwards (2006)
    The author discusses some challenges and barriers to developing identities and approaches to being an ally in social justice work. Acknowledging that aspiring allies can potentially be harmful in their approach or reinforce problematic perceptions, he explores effective ways to develop good intentions into good practice.
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Hot topics: Primary prevention framework for engaging men | Back to top

The primary prevention of sexual and intimate partner violence happens on many levels. Resources in this section present information on hot topic areas related to various levels of targeted change within the socio-ecological model for prevention. At each level, there are risk factors that may increase the likelihood of violence. There are also protective factors that may help to reduce the risk. Primary prevention approaches seek to decrease risk and increase protective factors. Resource below provide some ideas for topics to discuss or address in prevention programs. Review these resources for ideas on how you can target prevention efforts when working with boys and men.

Understanding the primary prevention approach to engaging boys and men
  • Primary Prevention | HTML HTML
    by Men Can Stop Rape (2011)
    This page discusses the primary prevention approach used by the organization Men Can Stop Rape. It discusses their efforts to challenge dominant masculinity and create lasting change.
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  • Theories that shape our work | HTML HTML
    by Men Can Stop Rape (2011)
    This page presents the various theories guiding the work of Men Can Stop Rape, including explanations for Bystander Intervention, Socio-Ecological Model for Prevention, Social and Emotional Learning Theory, and Dominant Stories and Counter-stories of Masculinity.
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  • Factors Associated with a Man's Risk for Abusing His Partner | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, adapted from the World Report on Violence and Health of the World Health Organization (2002)
    This resource presents common risk factors at each socio-ecological level of prevention. Examples of common risk factors for perpetrating intimate partner violence include marital instability, poverty, and traditional gender norms.
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  • Factors Associated with Men Committing Rape | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    by the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence, dapted from Guidelines for Medico-legal Care for Victims of Sexual Violence of the World Health Organization (2003)
    This page offers example of risk factors for men's perpetration of rape for each of the four socio-ecological levels. Examples of common risk factors include alcohol and drug use, emotionally unsupportive family environment, and generally accepting sexually violent behavior.
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  • Moving Upstream, Volume 7, Issues 1 & 2 | PDF Issue 1 PDF (6 p.) PDF Issue 2 PDF (6 p.)
    by Brad Perry and Robert Franklin for the Virginia Sexual and Domestic Violence Action Alliance (2011)
    In this 2-part series, Brad Perry and Robert Franklin discuss effective primary prevention strategies. Included in this discussion is an evaluation of primary prevention messaging and efforts.
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Individual level prevention and social change: Pornography and sexual violence

Viewing pornography may have detrimental effects on sexuality development and the risk of committing violence. Resources in this section discuss risks and consequences for porn use (Jensen & Okrina, 2004). Establishing a healthy framework for exploring and discussing sexuality may serve as a protective factor in preventing violence.

  • Pornography and Sexual Violence | PDF PDF (9 p.)
    by Robert Jensen (July 2004)
    This document summarizes the current research on the connection between pornography and sexual violence, and looks at how we define pornography, the consumption and effects of pornography, and the implications this has on policies and practices.
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  • Effects of Pornography on Perceptions of Women and Sexual Violence | HTML HTML
    by Katie Broendel (June 2009)
    This blog post discusses research and analyzes the framing of sexual violence in the media.
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  • Porn Use and Sex Crimes | HTML HTML
    by Rory Reid for ContentWatch (2010)
    Reid argues that viewing pornography leads to developing an unhealthy view of sexuality and may promote sexually violence activities.
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  • The Social Costs of Pornography | HTML HTML [22:00]
    by Gerard V. Bradley for The Research Program on Family, Marriage, and Democracy of the Witherspoon Institute (2010)
    The focus of this video is to describe theory, review research and discuss effects of pornography on interpersonal relationships.
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  • Healthy Sexuality: A Guide for Advocates, Counselors and Prevention Educators | PDF PDF (9 p.)
    by the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (April 2012)
    This guide provides guidance and practical tools for discussing healthy sexuality within the context of sexual violence for advocates, counselors, prevention educators, and activists.
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Relational level prevention and social change: The bystander approach

On the relationship level, increasing the knowledge and skill needed to disrupt violent norms and behaviors can effectively prevent violence in two ways. First, it may interrupt a violent situation from progressing in the moment. Second, it creates a climate where violence is not tolerated. Resources below discuss the bystander approach and how it could have played a more positive role in the.

  • Where Do You Stand? Campaign Guide | PDF PDF (19 p.)
    by Men Can Stop Rape (2011)
    This guide describes "Where Do You Stand?," a comprehensive bystander intervention campaign for college men. The guide teaches how to use the campaign to positively change the cultural dynamics of a campus culture.
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  • Penn State: The mother of all teachable moments for the bystander approach | PDF PDF (5 p.)
    by Jackson Katz for the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (December 2011)
    The NSVRC shares lessons from the Penn State University sexual abuse case in this three-part series on bystander intervention as a continuation of their support of and focus on this approach to sexual violence prevention. This article highlights the MVP program.
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  • Penn State and the bystander approach: Laying bare the dynamics of male peer culture | PDF PDF (5 p.)
    by Jackson Katz for the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (December 2011)
    The NSVRC shares lessons from the Penn State University sexual abuse case in this three-part series on bystander intervention as a continuation of their support of and focus on this approach to sexual violence prevention. This article discusses male peer culture.
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  • Moving beyond Penn State: Bystander training as leadership training | PDF PDF (3 p.)
    by Jackson Katz for the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (December 2011)
    The NSVRC shares lessons from the Penn State University sexual abuse case in this three-part series on bystander intervention as a continuation of their support of and focus on this approach to sexual violence prevention. This article discusses building male leadership.
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Community change: Prevention work in schools, sports programs, and social communities
Take Back the Tech by the Women's Networking Support Program is a tool that allows users to map violence against women committed online or through technology in an effort to bring this widespread violence into the open. Men and boys can participate in helping to track this form of violence, taking action to intervene in problematic posting and content noticed within online communities.
  • Standing Up and Speaking Out Through Athletics | MP3 [22:03]
    by Joe Ehrmann for PreventConnect (2009)
    In this audio presentation, Coach Ehrmann discusses the influence of sports in the construction of masculinity and the role of athletes in the prevention of violence against women.
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  • Lifting the Veil of Secrecy: Stopping Sexual Abuse in Sports and Every Institution | HTML HTML
    by Larry Cohen for the Huffington Post (December 2011)
    Cohen discusses that prevention is most effective and meaningful when it addresses the key norms within institutions that allow violent actions and behaviors to take place.
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  • She Fears You: Teaching College Men to End Rape | PDF PDF (17 p.)
    by Keith E. Edwards and Troy Headrick (2011)
    The authors discuss moving beyond risk reduction in rape prevention efforts to address ways that men can address rape culture on college campuses. Working from the perspective that both men and women are harmed by rape culture, men can be major allies in prevention work.
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  • Tips for Partnering with Men's Organizations | PDF PDF (1 p.)
    by the National Sexual Violence Resource Center (2012)
    This one-page facts sheet provides information on bringing men into anti-sexual violence work and partnering with community-based men's organizations.
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  • Mobilising Men in Practice: Challenging sexual and gender-based violence in institutional settings | PDF PDF (114 p.)
    by Alan Greig with Jerker Edström for the Institute of Development Studies (2012)
    This guidebook presents tools, stories, and lessons learned in mobilizing men to challenge sexism, rape culture, and violence in institutional settings.
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Societal change: Changing social norms

The media, messages, and social constructions contribute to a culture where violence is accepted, tolerated or promoted. Resources shown here offer some discussion on changing social norms and examples of ways that men can affect societal change.

  • The Social Norms Approach to Violence Prevention | PDF PDF (5 p.)
    by Alan D. Berkowitz, Family Violence Prevention Fund (2003)
    Describes an approach that seeks to engage men as allies by creating campaign messages that validate men's hidden feelings and beliefs in order to foster an environment where speaking out against violence against women is socially acceptable.
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  • Men speak out about sexist coverage of rape: A call to action | MP3 [14:45]
    by David Lee for PreventConnect, a project of the California Coalition Against Sexual Assault (2011)
    David Lee interviews several men who chose to sign a statement calling for an end to sexist coverage of rape. The recording discusses media coverage and the impact that messaging can have in the movement to end violence against women.
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  • Say No: UNITE Quiz | HTML HTML
    by UN Women (2011)
    This quiz tests knowledge on the social impact of violence against women. It presents questions addressing the root causes of violence, the impact of violence, and presents facts on the prevalence of violence in certain parts of the world and situations.
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  • Men Speak Up: A toolkit for action in men's daily lives | PDF PDF (30 p.)
    by Michael Flood for the White Ribbon Campaign (2011)
    This report outlines goals for men's action, identifies how speaking up and activism make a difference, explores what men can do, notes the strategies with which to nourish personal strength, support and inspiration, and acknowledges the mistakes it is easy to make.
    + View Summary

How violence shapes the lives of men and boys | Back to top

In any group of men, you are likely speaking to a group of people who have been impacted by violence in many ways. Men and boys can survive violence, be exposed to or witness violence, work through violence with significant others, challenge violence, perpetrate violence or operate within a system that promotes a certain type of masculinity. While it is well established in research that men are the primary perpetrators of violence in United States, this section does not address male perpetration of sexual or domestic violence. (For more information about these issues, see VAWnet’s sections on Batterers and Sexual Violence Perpetration). Rather, resources in this section offer information on some of the many ways that violence can impact men and boys at many different life stages. According to data from the National Intimate Partner and Sexual Violence Survey (NISVS, 2011) approximately 1 in 10 men in the U.S. (an estimated 11.2 million) has experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by an intimate partner. Recognizing the various ways that violence shapes, influences and challenges men and boys helps us to move beyond the limiting call to action, “we all have mothers, daughters, sisters, partners, friends…” towards embracing and promoting activism that understands violence as a universal experience and non-violence as a universal responsibility.

Voice Male Magazine is developed and published by engaged men seeking gender equity and an end to oppression. You can access the most recent version and some past editions online.
Child sexual abuse/Childhood exposure to domestic violence
  • Connections: Male Survivors of Sexual Violence | PDF PDF (28 p.)
    by the Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs (2011)
    This edition of the Connections publication discusses various forms of sexual violence against men and boys.
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  • Children's Exposure to Intimate Partner Violence and Other Family Violence | PDF PDF (12 p.)
    by Sherry Hamby, David Finkelhor, Heather Turner, and Richard Ormrod of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (October 2011)
    This bulletin explores in depth the NatSCEV survey results regarding exposure to family violence among children in the United States, including exposure to intimate partner violence, assaults by parents on siblings of children surveyed, and other assaults involving teen and adult household members.
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  • An Assault on Our Future: The impact of violence on young people and their relationships | PDF PDF (56 p.)
    by Michael Flood and Lara Fergus for the White Ribbon Foundation (2008)
    This report examines how violence against women specifically affects children and young people. It looks at the nature of violence they experience in their homes and their own relationships, its impacts, and recommends priorities for action.
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  • Little Eyes, Little Ears: How Violence Against a Mother Shapes Children as they Grow | PDF PDF (44 p.)
    by Alison Cunningham and Linda Baker for the National Clearinghouse on Family Violence (2007)
    This is a concise source of information for anyone wanting to understand childrens' experiences of violence and its impact their on development from infancy to adolescence.
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  • Male Survivors of Child Sexual Abuse/Boys and Men Healing Film Excerpts | HTML HTML [10:00]
    by Big Voice Pictures (2010 )<
    Excerpts from the film "Boys and Men Healing" presents the perspectives and stories of men as they discuss their experiences of child sexual abuse.
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Ally/Significant other
  • Vrai Djo (Real Man) PSA Campaign | HTML HTML
    by Search for Common Ground in the DRC
    This campaign, developed in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), presents common scenarios in which violence and harassment against women can develop and positive examples of how men can act in these situations.
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  • Where Our Boys At? Involving Young Men as Allies to End Violence against Girls | HTML HTML
    by Rogers Park Young Women's Action Team and Mariame Kaba (2011)
    A toolkit for engaging young men as allies in the fight against gender-based violence, this resource includes tools, fact sheet and discussion tips. Resources on exploring gender roles and socialization, activism work, a documentary film and discussion guides are included.
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Experiencing violence as an adult
  • Connections: Male Survivors of Sexual Violence | PDF PDF (28 p.)
    by the Washington Coalition of Sexual Assault Programs (2011)
    This edition of the Connections publication discusses various forms of sexual violence against men and boys.
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  • Abuse in Gay Male Relationships: A Discussion Paper | PDF PDF (27 p.)
    by Kevin Kirkland, Ph.D., National Clearinghouse on Family Violence of the Family Violence Prevention Unit, Public Health Agency of Canada (2004)
    Intended for victimized gay men (and friends, colleagues and family), and helping professionals (therapists, counselors, health care providers and educators), this paper provides suggestions on how to identify and deal with unique aspects of this issue.
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  • Male Victims of Domestic Violence: A Substantive and Methodological Research Review | PDF PDF ( p.)
    by Michael S. Kimmel for The Equality Committee of the Department of Education and Science (2001)
    This paper explores claims of gender symmetry in intimate partners' use of violence by reviewing the empirical foundations of the research and critiquing existing sources of data on domestic violence.
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  • Men Struggle for Rape Awareness | PDF PDF (3 p.)
    by Roni Caryn Rabin for the New York Times (January 2012)
    This article discusses the challenges and limitations that male victims of rape have historically faced and some statistics on the prevalence of sexual violence against men. Most men are raped by a person they know.
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Hazing and sexual violence
  • The Truth about Hazing |HTML HTML (1 p.)
    by DoSomething.org
    This page is brief description about the nature and scope of hazing. The page includes links to laws and legislation related to hazing, and describes sexual violence as one of the most recognizable ways to exert power and humiliate another person.
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  • Hazing and Gender: Analyzing the Obvious | HTML HTML (23 p.)
    by Elizabeth J. Allan, published in The Hazing Reader: Examining Rites Gone Wrong in Fraternities, Professional and Amateur Athletics, High Schools and Military Hank Nuwer, Indiana University Press (2005)
    The author discusses hazing as a form of institutionalized violence and explores it through a gender theory lens.
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  • Experts say hazing is becoming increasingly violent and sexual | HTML HTML
    by Smita Kalokhe for WXYZ Action News (2012)
    A news report discusses the ongoing issue of hazing. Experts interviewed report that hazing has become increasingly more violent, including sexually violent.
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  • They Call It Hazing: How Adults Enable Sexual Assault by Athletes on Their Teammates | HTML HTML (3 p.)
    by Bob Cook for Forbes (2011)
    In this post, Cook discusses how adults and other bystanders minimize act of sexual violence against athletes by their teammates. Writing it off as "hazing" and subscribing to myths about team unity building.
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Accountability work with men | Back to top

Moving beyond the system of gender roles that limits us and promotes inequality is a great challenge for many anti-violence programs. While doing the work of engaging men and boys, it is important to be mindful of limitations and challenges posed by social systems of male privilege. These resources discuss the concept of male privilege, how to challenge it, and critical questions for reflection. Since many leaders in anti-violence organizations are women, we also provide information on honoring female leadership in our work.

  • Guidelines for Challenging Sexism and Male Supremacy | PDF PDF (2 p.)
    by Paul Kivel (2007)
    This brief resource presents critical questions to ask in an effort to deconstruct the political nature of sexism and male supremacy in your work.
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  • Going To Places That Scare Me: Personal Reflections On Challenging Male Supremacy | HTML HTML (4 p.)
    by Chris Crass (2012)
    In this article a white, male activist discusses his experience of being confronted by women activists as sexist and addressing these concerns.
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  • From Violence to Coercive Control: Renaming Men's Abuse of Women | PDF PDF (10 p.)
    by Stephen Fisher (2011)
    This report discusses the naming of the issue of men's violence against women. The report is from the White Ribbon Research Series.
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  • What Does It Feel Like When Change Finally Comes: Male Supremacy, Accountability and Transformative Justice | PDF PDF (12 p.)
    by Gaurav Jashnani, RJ Maccani, and Alan Greig from The Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence in Activist Communities, South End Press (2011)
    This paper discusses the process of acknowledging, addressing, and taking next steps to challenge male-supremacy and dominant culture patriarchy in activist spaces.
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  • The Sweet Tea Southern Queer Men's Collective Statement | HTML HTML (5 p.)
    by Yolo Akili, Franklin Abbott, Will Cordery, LamontSims, Craig Washington, Charles Stephens, Tim'm West, and Michael J. Brewer (2009)
    This statement represents the mission statement of a group of queer-identified men as they work to address male privilege, patriarchy, and gendered oppression.
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  • We Can Do Better: "Power and Control" and "Accountability" Wheels for Male Aspiring Allies | PDF PDF (2 p.)
    by Ben Atherton-Zeman (Fall 2011)
    These wheels, based on the Duluth Abuse Intervention Project (DAIP) model, provide a framework for explaining men's abuse of power and control in work to address gendered violence. The author offers a model for accountable men's work within anti-violence movements.
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  • Honoring Women Worldwide Framework | HTML HTML (3 p.)
    by Honoring Women Worldwide (2011)
    This page provides the framework used by this organization for building the respect, care and value of women as leaders and in general.
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Promising programs | Back to top

These programs have been designed by national anti-violence groups, state domestic violence coalitions, or local community-based groups across the country. Most represent grassroots attempts to engage men and boys to end sexual and intimate partner violence.

Men Can Stop Rape's youth development program, the Men of Strength Club, is the country's premier primary violence prevention program for mobilizing young men to prevent sexual and dating violence. The Men of Strength Club, or MOST Club, provides young men with a structured and supportive space to build individualized definitions of masculinity that promote healthy relationships.
  • Report Describing Projects Designed to Prevent First-Time Male Perpetration of Sexual Violence | PDF PDF (61 p.)
    by RTI International (2003)
    This report offers a catalogue of programs targeting prevention of first-time male perpetration of sexual violence and provides an overview of literature findings on sexual violence prevention.
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  • The Training Institute for Mobilizing Men, August 2007 – May 2009 Final Report | PDF PDF (9 p.)
    by Men Stopping Violence (2010)
    This report describes the processes and lessons learned from the TIMM initiative to help state coalitions working to end domestic violence create or improve programs that educate and engage men in prevention and intervention.
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  • Organizing to End Violence Against Women: Putting Principles Into Practice | PDF PDF (23 p.)
    by Dick Bathrick, Ulester Douglas, Khaatim S. El, Phyllis Alesia Perry, and Malkia S. White
    This document presents and discusses basic organizing principles for engaging men in ending violence against women.
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  • Deconstructing Male Violence Against Women | PDF PDF (14 p.)
    by Ulester Douglas, Dick Bathrick, and Phyllis Alesia Perry (2008)
    The MSV model, and the strategies and programs that have grown out of it, demonstrate the potential for disrupting traditions of abuse and dominance at the individual, familial, local, national, and global levels.
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  • Why Are Anti-sexist Men Confronting Violence Against Women? | HTML HTML (1 p.)
    by the National Organization for Men Against Sexism (NOMAS) (2008)
    This article describes the motivation and philosophy behind the work of NOMAS, who is devoted to ending the whole range of men's violence, against women, against children, and against one another.
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  • Where Our Boys At? Involving Young Men as Allies to End Violence against Girls | HTML HTML
    by Rogers Park Young Women's Action Team and Mariame Kaba (2011)
    A toolkit for engaging young men as allies in the fight against gender-based violence, this resource includes tools, fact sheet and discussion tips. Resources on exploring gender roles and socialization, activism work, a documentary film and discussion guides are included.
    + View Summary
The Coaching Boys Into Men (CBIM) Coaches Kit by Futures Without Violence (Revised 2011) provides coaches with an easy to follow 12-week curriculum, which includes the CBIM Card Series, the CBIM Playbook, and additional References & Resources to support program implementation. The new version of the Coaches Kit includes additional resources for coaches, as well as two new lessons on Digital Disrespect and Understanding Consent.
  • The Coaching Boys into Men Playbook | PDF PDF (26 p.)
    by Futures Without Violence (2005)
    This tool helps coaches deliver a critical message to young men: Help end violence against women by treating everyone with the same honor and respect that they give their teammates. Includes information and strategies for promoting this positive message.
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  • Toolkit for Working with Men and Boys to Prevent Gender-Based Violence | HTML HTML
    by Futures Without Violence (2007)
    This web site is a comprehensive tool kit designed to help you work with men and boys to prevent gender-based violence.
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Related resources | Back to top

A Call to Men
National men's organization addressing domestic and sexual violence prevention and the promotion of healthy manhood.

Coaching Boys Into Men
This Futures Without Violence public education initiative engages athletic coaches in teaching boys to respect the women and girls intheir lives.

Delaware Men

Delaware MEN: Men's Education Network
Group of concerned men in Delaware who began meeting in April 2011 with the mission to involve men in promoting healthy, safe relationships. Delaware M.E.N. is a project of the Delaware Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Click on the image to the right to view their 60 second PSA.

Dosomething.org
"Using the power of online to get teens to do good stuff offline."

Iowa Men's Action Network
Work to inspire all men of Iowa to partner with women to promote healthy and respectful relationships in their homes, neighborhoods, and the community, to model peaceful and respectful behaviors with each other, and to empower our youth with similar tools and skills necessary to live and expect a lifestyle free from abuse.

Men Can Stop Rape
National organization working to mobilize men to use their strength for creating cultures free from men's violence against women. Campaigns include Men of Strength Club, Campus Men of Strength, and My Strength is Not for Hurting. [See Cleveland Rape Crisis Center's Men of Strength Club]

Men Stopping Violence
Works locally, nationally, and internationally to dismantle oppressive belief systems, social structures, and institutional practices.

Minnesota Men's Action Network
To foster and develop peacemakers through modeling, mentoring, storytelling and dialogue. Based at the Minnesota Alliance to Prevent Sexual & Domestic Violence.

National Organization for Men Against Sexism
Activist organization of men and women supporting positive changes for men.

StopHazing.org
Educating to eliminate hazing.

White Ribbon Campaign
WRC is the largest effort in the world of men working to end violence against women. In over fifty-five countries, campaigns are led by both men and women, even though the focus is on educating men and boys. In some countries it is a general public education effort focused on ending violence against women.

XY Online
XY is a website focused on men, masculinities, and gender politics. XY is a space for the exploration of issues of gender and sexuality, the daily issues of men's and women's lives, and practical discussion of personal and social change.

The following resources may also be useful:

Boys Will Be Men: Raising Our Sons for Courage, Caring and Community (Print-Non-Fiction). Kivel, Paul. New Society Publishers, 1999.

Packaging Boyhood: Saving Our Sons from Superheroes, Slackers and Other Media Stereotypes (Print-Non-Fiction). Brown, Lyn Mikel; Lamb, Sharon; Tappan, Mark. St. Martin's Press, 2009.

Hip Hop: Beyond Beats and Rhymes by Byron Hurt (video).

I am a Man: Black Masculinity in America by Byron Hurt (video).