We love Beyrouth! Such a vibrant city and a mix of culture!
So we were thrilled to land back in Lebanon to attend the release of the report on Masculinities in the Arab World from IMAGES MENA. The report studied on men’s realities, practices, and attitudes with regard to gender norms, gender-equality policies, household dynamics, caregiving and fatherhood, intimate partner violence, sexual diversity, and health and economic stress, among other topics in 4 countries of the Arab world (Morocco, Lebanon, Egypt and Palestine).
A few results from the study:
- Which men were more likely to support gender equality? Generally, men with greater wealth, with higher education, whose mothers had more education, and whose fathers carried out traditionally feminine household tasks are more likely to hold gender- equitable attitudes.
- In most of the countries, the results show that a significant proportion of men are under enormous pressure (mostly economic), with little recourse to formal healthcare, including mental health services, particularly for smoking and substance use.
- In nearly every other country where IMAGES has been carried out (in other regions of the world), younger men have consistently shown more equitable attitudes and some key practices than their older counterparts; in three of the four countries included in IMAGES MENA, this was not the case.
- Family role models matter: having fathers who encouraged daughters to take on non-traditional professions or to work outside the home, or who allowed daughters to choose their husbands, seems to contribute to the emergence of more empowered women.
So, we took the opportunity to interview Anthony Keedi, Program Manager from Abaad NGO, to know his position on masculinity in the Arab World. If you’re as fascinated by this part of the world as we are, you can watch his interview there and you can also watch his talk at the Spark Talks event we organized in Beyrouth in 2014.