COE 1997: Promoting Equality 
a common issue for Men and Women

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COE 1997: Promoting Equality, 
a common issue for Men and Women


Council of Europe

Strasbourg, 17 September 1997



Table of contents



The International Seminar 'Promoting Equality: A common issue for men and women" was held from 17 to 18 June 1997, at the Palais de l'Europe in Strasbourg.

There were some eighty participants, all working for, or interested in, the promotion of equality between women and men. They came from 32 countries. The list of participants can be found at the end of this document (Appendix I).

The Seminar was organised in the framework of the activities of the Steering Committee for Equality between Women and Men (CDEG).

The main objective of the Seminar was to initiate a European debate on and to raise awareness of the fact that equality must be achieved by women and men working together. Equality is becoming as much a men's issue as a women's issue. The advancement of women during the last decades has changed both women's and men's lives and their environment, and sometimes even created areas of tension between the sexes. These areas should be defined and ways to overcome them discussed. Further, the aim of the Seminar was to emphasise the positive changes in traditional male gender roles and to study the relationship between the traditional male structures of society, and violence against women, patriarchy and war.

The two themes of the Seminar were:

1. Equality: a factor for the positive development of men's roles and of society

2. Men and violence: the logic of inequality

Besides the reports on the themes, in the course of the Seminar two important keynote speeches were presented. One was given by Mr Bengt WESTERBERG (Sweden) on equality as a factor for the postive development of men's roles and of society. The other keynote speech was given by Professor Alberto GODENZI (Switzerland) on men and violence and the logic of inequality.

The General Conclusions were presented by the General Rapporteur, Mr Frangois DE SINGLY (France).

The Seminar was chaired alternatively by Ms Agnete ANDERSEN (Denmark), Ms Ludmila BOJKOVA (Bulgaria), Mme Martine CHAUMONT (Belgium), Mr Stanislaw TURBANSKI (Poland) and Dr Santiago URIOS MOLINER (Spain).

The Seminar was significant in that it was seen as a way to give voice to men on the question as to how women and men should work for equality and to give men a possibility to discuss among themselves and with women how they have evolved during the last decades. The development of men's roles towards more partnership and co-operation with women was a central issue. The Seminar presented alternative images of men, men who neither like nor accept the traditional male gender role.

The Seminar put forward several ideas as to how to proceed with work in this area and identified a number of specific activities which the Council of Europe could carry out in order to favour co-operation between women and men on equality issues.

The present proceedings reproduce the speeches, the reports and the conclusions of the Seminar.


Opening address

by Pierre-Henri IMIBERT, Director of Human Rights, Council of Europe

Ladies and gentlemen,

It is with very great pleasure that I am welcoming you to the Council of Europe today. Over the next two days you are going to discuss a subject whose importance needs no emphasising: equality between women and men. This is by no means the first seminar held by the Human Rights Directorate on this issue. At the Council of Europe, the promotion of equality between women and men has for a long time been part and parcel of the promotion of human rights.

I have the impression, however, that today and tomorrow something new is going to occur. Perhaps, I hope, we shall be able to say that this Seminar was a turning point; that it has opened up new prospects for achieving equality. Why am I so optimistic, when I know that progress in this area is very slow, and that there is talk at present of a reversal of the situation as a result, in particular, of the difficult economic conditions in Europe? Perhaps simply because it is the first time that I have opened an event on equality where equal numbers of men and women are taking part. You will therefore be hearing a genuine dialogue, between women and men, about this common challenge: how to achieve equality.

I should like to pay tribute to the Steering Committee for Equality between Women and Men for including this subject in its programme of activities. I should also like to emphasise the important contribution - intellectual and material - by the Swedish authorities to this Seminar.

Before you begin your discussions, allow me to share with you some thoughts about the subject to be debated. More than a hundred years ago, Louise Michel, a French revolutionary (she took an active part in the Paris Commune) and a fighter for women's rights said: "We want to teach women their rights and duties; we want men to look upon their companions not as slaves but as equals". That statement contains a whole programme of equality promotion, a desire to teach women and men to have a new vision of their relations, a desire to change their balance of power.

Now, at the dawn of the 2 1 st century, can we say that Louise Iffichel's aim has been reached? What progress has been made? What remains for us to do? Some will say that the reduction of inequality between the sexes has been the greatest revolution of the 20th century and that we have yet to gauge its full significance. In the West at least, women have acquired legal and economic autonomy; they have obtained equal rights with men; they have joined the labour market in large numbers. They have left the private sphere, to which men had confined them; they have entered the public domain, virtually denied them a century ago.

Yet there is no doubt that, despite this progress, the gap between rights and practice is still very wide. In nearly every field, women are still victims of discrimination and sometimes marginalised. Let us take the example of the recent general election in France. Women now account for 10% of members of parliament. That was regarded as considerable progress and, it is true that, previously, the figure was 6%. But the fact that men make up nearly 90% of elected members of parliament shows that there is still a lot of resistance and many obstacles to be overcome.

No European country, however advanced in this matter, can claim to have achieved full equality between women and men. Furthermore, in many countries, the issue of equality no longer seems to be a priority, as if women were now thought to have enough rights or to have obtained rights not really due to them. The reluctance to continue to adopt positive action to correct inequalities, currently detectable in many countries, is proof of that. There is also a certain tension that can sometimes be felt between women and men, perhaps as a result of the major upheaval in relations in the wake of female emancipation. That emancipation created a vacuum which has yet to be filled and which is a source of destabilisation. But it might also be thought that men are somehow afraid, of their loss of traditional points of reference in the family and society, of their loss of power in general.

A lot is said about the need to change mentalities. But how can that be done? How can we explain to everyone that equality is a question of justice, that our societies need equality, that they will only operate smoothly and develop harmoniously if there is equality? What methods and strategies should we adopt?

I hope that, during this seminar, you are going to begin to find answers to these questions. We know that there is no turning back now. Men and women are going to share common ground and enjoy equal rights because human rights and a properly functioning democracy are at stake. This can only be brought about by continuous dialogue between both sexes, a dialogue on the hardest questions, the very ones that you are going to tackle during this seminar.

Make no mistake: I am not saying that because men are taking part in the debate on equality solutions will be imposed on us. But I do think that holding this European seminar is an indication of the fact that we can no longer look at equality as we used to, essentially as an issue for women, concerning their discrimination, compared with the norm, that of men. Men can no longer remain on the sidelines of this debate. This seminar sends a signal that there are people - male and female - in today's Europe who think that women and men should be able to exercise their human rights in full together.

Let us be quite clear: women no longer accept the injustice of their situation. They have assumed their responsibilities in public life and sometimes in politics. They have often done so by making huge sacrifices, working day and night, because that was the only way they could manage, because most men did not feel concerned by their emancipation. They did not feel directly responsible for home life, bringing up children, family life. It is time for men to redefine with women the share of tasks and responsibilities at every level of existence, especially at home. That could only be beneficial and truly improve everyone's quality of life.

To conclude, just a word about the other theme on your agenda: violence against women. Men must also assume their responsibility for this. Violence against women is the result of inequality, and not just an act committed by a sick minority. Somehow this violence suggests that women do not deserve the same treatment as men, that they are inferior. We know the proportions that this violence can attain in wartime, or in the name of custom, tradition or religion. The eradication of violence against women is a major issue for the Council of Europe. The Steering Committee for Equality has plans to create binding legal instruments to combat violence against women, and I welcome that.

This seminar will be followed up. This autumn - in November - Istanbul will be hosting the 4th European Ministerial Conference on equality between women and men. One of the themes on its agenda is: "Promoting equality in a democratic society: the role of men". I am sure that your discussions will lead to a good many proposals and recommendations that could be conveyed to the ministers. Perhaps the basic idea that we should try to put over is the unequivocal affirmation that without equality between the sexes we shall never have a fully just, fully democratic or fully developed society with full respect for human rights. Human beings are either female or male - never neuter. Women - or men - are not a special community, such as those established on racial, religious or national criteria. They are two components of the same community, the human race. It is high time for this concept to be fully understood by society, by democracy itself. This basic idea should determine our approach over the next two days.

Thank you for listening.


Keynote Speech by Mr Bengt WESTERBERG

Equality: a factor for the positive development of men's roles and of society

The struggle for equality between men and women has traditionally been more important to women than to men. From a historic point of view that is quite easy to understand. Women have for a long time been subordinated and underprivileged compared to men, and they have not had the same opportunities for education, occupations, careers, positions of power, income, etc.

Thanks to gradual reforms, women have conquered many of these privileges. In some countries, my own for example, you can say that today women have obtained equality de jure. In other countries, even if steps have been taken in that same direction, differences even in formal opportunities still remain. And everywhere, also where women dejure are equal, there is still a long way to go before we have reached equality de facto.

It is also a fact that women are still much more involved in the debate and the struggle than men are. For example, seminars and conferences on equality are attended by women to a much larger extent than by men.

In this seminar we are talking about equality between men and women. This project has long been regarded as an issue exclusively for women. There has been much talk about feminism, emancipation of women, female policy, etc. The lack of equality has been seen as a problem only concerning women. Their situation has to be changed in order to expand their life chances and their economic independence and to give them the same opportunities as men. Many countries still stick to this approach.

But where women's issues have been renamed "equality issues", this has proved to be a way to include men in the process of change. This is the perspective of this seminar and it has also been adopted in some of our countries. It is an indication that some people realise that not only women but also men have to change their lives if we want to lead more equal lives. In practice, however, this knowledge has so far not made many marks in the real lives of men, not even in countries where, for some decades now, this has been the point of departure in the debate.

In some countries, the conditions for women have changed dramatically during the post-war period and especially since the 1960s. The rate of employment for women, also women with small children, has approached that of men. As a consequence, women have become economically more independent which has contributed to increasing their personal freedom. Today, in all parts of life traditionally dominated by men, we also meet women.

However, at the same time, women usually keep the main responsibility for home and children. They still perform two thirds or more of the unpaid work at home. Time studies have shown, again and again, that the talk of women doing double work is not groundless.

I guess that the Swedish debate and experience may be of some general interest. In the 1960s, it was feared that Sweden would run the risk of becoming short of labour. One way to meet this threat was to mobilise women. Recognising that women did a lot of work in their homes, we discussed how to relieve them in order to free their labour force for the labour market. The main solution chosen was to extend childcare and care for elderly people in the public sector. But when studying the use of time in the 1990s, after three decades of incomparable expansion of those services, the amount of unpaid work done by women was about the same. The time spent on running the household is not much shorter now than it was in the 1930s!

Noticing this does not mean that the extension of childcare and care for the elderly has not been of utmost importance to create more equal opportunities. It has been a prerequisite for the increased presence of women in the labour market. But on the whole, extended services have not unburdened women as much as was expected. And there are, of course, explanations.

Even with childcare centres taking care of the children while the parents are at work, children must be delivered to and picked up from the centre. Parents are often expected to attend meetings with the staff, performances made by their children, etc. And when getting home after a long day's separation from their children, many parents feel that they should spend an hour or two playing more actively with them than most parents ever did 60 years ago.

Not only services have improved but also ihe technology used in homes, washing machines and the like. But we do not use the new rational technology only to do the laundry more efficiently than we did in the 1930s - we have many more clothes, we usually do not wear the same shirt two days running, so we have to wash more often. In many families with children, the washing machine works several times a week, perhaps more or less every day. And the laundry must be put into the machine, taken out of it, be put into the tumble drier or the airing cupboard, etc etc. Everything takes time, even in a modem household!

I am telling you this because I think it leads us to an important conclusion. Extended services and new techniques will not reduce the unpaid work necessary to run a home to the extent we might have thought it would. So, if we aim at relieving women of their traditional domestic responsibilities, we men must be prepared to do a larger part of the unpaid work. I feel convinced that the inequalities between men and women that we can still find in business life, universities, politics and elsewhere to a large extent reflect inequalities within homes and families. So I would like to say that equality at home is a prerequisite for equality in society as a whole.

So far, apparently men have not felt the same motivation as women to change their ways of living in order to promote equality. We must merely state that men have not found gender equality to be in their interest. And no wonder about that: few groups voluntarily refuse privileges, especially if they do not feel that they get nothing else in exchange.

Irrespective of the absence of men in the struggle for equality, there has been progress -although it has not been as successful as some of us may have wished. Everything points towards continuing steps forward. But I think it is time we asked ourselves if it is only a question of time or if there are other, less visible, more subtle obstacles to real equality. My answers are "yes" to both questions.

I think it is, of course, partly a question of time. There have been vast changes from my father's generation to my own, or further to my children's - and more changes are to come. But I am convinced that it is not only a question of time. Besides rules and other formalities which historically have discriminated against women, and which have now been corrected in other countries, there is also what we can call an informal power structure that contributes to the survival of the traditional gender system. Women have long experienced this informal power structure but have not always realised its importance, or have at least underestimated it. We men have not recognised it. I think this is at least part of the answer to the question of why progress in equality has been limited.

The Swedish historian Yvonne Hirdman has formulated what she calls two logics that constitute this informal power structure: the general separation of the male and female worlds - clearly seen in both the labour market and the domestic area - and the primacy of male norms in the world that is common to men and women. The informal power structure is, not surprisingly, much more difficult to discover and even more difficult to change than the formal structure. The informal structure has impact on our individual lives, our relations to each other, our way of living in our families and so on. The different expectations of boys and girls, men and women, is part of this informal structure. Let me give you a few examples of how it works.

Some years ago, when I was Minister of Equality for Sweden, I initiated an investigation to increase the understanding of why there are so few women in the top positions of business companies in my country. When asking male managers for an explanation, the investigator got several answers, among them that between the ages of 25 and 32 when you have to give everything if you plan for a business career, women tend to have a family and children Women tend to! How do they do it? Usually there are also men involved. But for us, family and children are evidently not seen as obstacles.

We can see that the claims laid to a chief executive, or even managers on a lower level, are much easier to comply with for a man without many other obligations than his work. For him, it is easier to come early, stay late, work at weekends, go for a trip abroad at short notice and so on. Leadership positions are impregnated with male norms. It has gone so far that leadership in itself has a sex. It is male. There are hundreds of books written about leadership in general and some about female leadership, which is looked upon as a special form of leadership. But I suppose few of you have ever seen or read a book about male leadership. Male leadership is a kind of tautology, isn't it?

As a Minister, I also proposed in 1994 a father's quota in the Swedish parental leave insurance. You cannot guess how many men I met then who could never imagine taking a month's leave, because they were irreplaceable at their workplaces. It is a blessing in disguise that there are almost no irreplaceable women in the labour market - they only seem to be ireplaceable at home.

And when the father's quota was mentioned in the newspapers, it was regularly called compulsory or coercion. Have you heard of compulsory maternity leave, or the terrible coercion that forces mothers to stay at home with their small children? Of course the entire parental leave system is voluntary, for both men and women. But the wording reflects the male norms still prevailing in society.

It is important to see how patterns of society often reflect this informal power structure. But this insight is not enough. Of course, there must also be a true desire to change the social patterns and a readiness to discuss the informal power structure, even at the cost of demand for change in our own ways of living. Our experience so far is, however, that men have neither been driven by a strong desire to change the patterns nor been willing to recognise the informal power structures. Perhaps the preparedness to accept reforms de jure has partly been because many men have felt that it is not that important in real life.

If we want the struggle for equality to accelerate, I think it is urgent that we men recognise the existence of the informal power structure and, of course, are ready to do something about it. But why should we? What is in it for us? There is no doubt that equality has improved the life chances and the situation for women. But are we men not condemned to lose as equality develops: to have less power, more competition for jobs and positions, more responsibility for unpaid work, a male role that is questioned? Why should we take part in the struggle?

In spite of these possible consequences, there are men who have already been actively involved in the struggle. We might ask ourselves what their driving forces have been. Let me point out five that I have found referred to when studying this issue:

The first is the feeling many men have that groups with both men and women are more effective, efficient and nicer to be part of than groups dominated by men. There are several reasons for this. One is that men and women, because of their cultural differences, have often had different experiences and have different perspectives on things. That means that as women get into a previously male-dominated group, new competence is added. Of course, this is also true when men get into female-dominated groups, for instance in day care centres. Another reason for the positive effects of mixed groups is that men and women can often have disciplining and encouraging effects on each other. We can describe this as a sexual tension that can be productive in working life.

A third apparent rationale for mixed groups is that most teams work towards a market where there are both men and women. The effectiveness as they try to meet the needs of their customers, clients, patients, pupils or whatever category, in which there are both men and women, should be better if there are both men and women also in their own team.

A third apparent rationale for mixed groups is that most teams work towards a market where there are both men and women. The effectiveness as they try to meet the needs of their customers, clients, patients, pupils or whatever category, in which there are both men and women, should be better if there are both men and women also in their own team.

On example can illustrate this thesis. A few years ago, as the Swedish Parliament celebrated that it was 75 years since women in Sweden got the right to vote and to be elected to Parliament, a Swedish historian, Professor Ann-Sofi Ohlander, gave a lecture in which she tried to show what the entry of women had meant to the political agenda and to the decisions made. She had found that both had been influenced to a large extent. New questions, especially concerning women and children, had been raised. Of course, these women added new experiences and perspectives to the Parliament which thus became more sensitive to many of the real problems of the Swedish citizens.

A second possible motive for men to take part in the struggle for equality will be touched upon more deeply by the next keynote speaker. Let me just note that in recent years many male networks have been founded which are based on the conviction that a more equal society will also be more peaceful.

I recently read a book, recommended to me by Eva Moberg, who you will hear more from this afternoon and who is a kind of prime mover of this seminar. The book is written by Riane Eisler and was published some ten years ago. Its name is "The Chalice and the Blade". Eisler shows that there is quite a high probability that Europeans in prehistoric times, until a couple of thousand years before Christ, lead more partnership-like lives than during the several thousand years of patriarchy.

Of course we cannot know for sure what things were like so long ago, but I find Eisler's hypothesis, based on an analysis of archaeological data, very credible. And at the same time very hopeful, as it shows that there is an alternative to the kind of society, based to a high degree on violence, that we now live in. Violence is, according to Eisler, not more natural for human beings than peace.

I suspect that Riane Eisler was also an inspiration to Eva Moberg when some years ago she started her campaign for a UN Conferende on the male role. This seminar is a big step towards her goal, which is now also mine and many others.

Let me now leave the anti-violence motive and turn to three others that are all found in the research of the Norwegian sociologists Oystein Gullvag Holter and Helene Aarseth. Holter and Aarseth have studied a group of men who belong to the equality avant-garde in Norway. The researchers have tried to find out what the motives of these men were and they point out three archetypes of men.

The first one is what they call the man ofjustice. They note that in principle, many men are in favour of justice. But in individual cases, there are often obstacles to living according to the accepted principles. The man of justice, however, follows the principles also in practice simply because he finds it just to do so.

The second archetype is called the careerist. His point of departure as he looks at the family is his job. He might have observed that organisations in the modem world are changing. They are becoming less hierarchical. He has learned that these new organisations may be more fitting for women and he thinks, for his future competitiveness in the labour market, that he should learn more of the kind that women know. One way to do that, he thinks, might be to stay home with his children for a while. So he makes his contribution at home hoping that in the future he will profit from that in his work. This type may sound a little suspect to you, but the researchers point out that he is closer to his children than others. It is from those contacts that he hopes to learn more about relationships, not from washing, cleaning or even golfing.

The third, and last, archetype is the caring man. His involvement in the family is not limited to his role as father. He thinks family life is really part of real life. To be an active and committed part of the family, and not only the breadwinner, adds to what he finds to be the quality of life.

All the five motives I have mentioned - and perhaps others - might be important in mobilising men for gender equality, but I feel that this last motive, let us call it to be a good father, is probably quantitatively the most important, the one motive that might make men march for equality. But I still say, might, not will make us march, because I do not think that even this motive is as strong a driving force as those that women have had.

More and more men realise, however, that they are important for their children. The absence of fathers is a social problem discussed in many countries. We know that the absence of a father will not necessarily mean social problems but we also know that young boys with social problems often miss their fathers. And among our male prisoners (and most prisoners are men) the absence of fathers during their adolescence seems to be a very common problem. So more fathers have become conscious of their significance for their children.

There is an interesting observation in the Norwegian study, which has been made also in other similar studies, that many of the men who endeavour to be more equal do that in a kind of protest against their own fathers who they perceived as absent.

But men do not want to be present only for their children's sake, but also for their own. A life where we stand all the time with both feet in working life has its limits. I think that many men look at the double-working wortien with somewhat divided feelings. On the one hand it looks tiring, of course, but on the other they may find that those women lead a more complete life, with one foot in production and one in reproduction. And many men probably envy that.

I find it desirable to encourage a debate on the terms of life. I hope such a debate will make many men question their traditional role and become more open to change it. We must also support those men who want to become more equal partners both at home and in the workplace. My proposal about the father's quota, which was accepted by Parliament and is now part of the Swedish parental insurance, was a very moderate step.

It must be followed by many more if we really want to achieve equality between men and women. What I am now waiting for is the first CEO to state that he expects all men in his company who become fathers to share the parental leave with their wives and that not doing so must be understood as a serious lack of responsibility that in the future will limit their chances for a career in the company.

Women have for a long time now been questioning their traditional role. In many countries they have also had the guts to change it. The time has come for us men to do the same. And we have many good reasons to do it. I feel convinced that a society built on partnership between men and women will mean progress for humanity and will be better prepared to meet all kinds of threats to the human race.

I hope that this seminar will be an important stimulus for an intensified discussion on these matters all over Europe.


Keynote speech by Professor Alberto GODENZI

University of Fribourg, Switzerland

Men and violence: The logic of inequality'

Inequality between men and women and violence of men against women are worldwide phenomena.

Although the extent both of inequality and of violence varies between the different countries, it is now widely acknowledged, as the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) states, that "there is no country in the world in which women are as well treated as men".

In this context one cannot but ask if men are superior - and as they are obviously not - if they are dominant and exploitative by nature.

Bertolt Brecht had one of his characters say in a novel: "No man is born a butcher". To become a hardened "tough guy" takes time and is costly. Such a personality has to be acquired. Although we have the biological apparatus that makes us capable of committing violent acts (men perhaps a little more sb than women), biology itself is only in a few pathological cases the cause of acts of violence. If it is not biology, it can only be the social world.

The composition of the social world exerts influence on the interpersonal inclination to commit acts of violence and consequently also on the violence of men against women. In this speech I shall focus on this topic - taking into account the factor of inequality. The connection between inequality and men's violence cannot be fully comprehended on a one-dimensional basis. Of course, there are other variables which can have an influence on the use of violence (such as cultural norms and their effect on interpersonal behaviour or overall level of violence). Nevertheless, inequality seems to be the crucial factor which influences violence.

We are - through comparative-cultural research - familiar with groups in which men's intimate violence against women belongs to the standard behaviour repertoire, and we know of groups in which men use less or even no violence against their partners (Levinson, 1989).

Groups with less violence are characterised by cooperation and equality amongst their members. Equality is attributed considerable importance.

We know today that control over income and possession, that is, over economic power, is not only the primary variable affecting sexual equality but is logically also the very foundation of violence against women. We also know that although women make up half of the world population and work considerably more than men, they receive in return only a fraction of income and their global possessions make up less than one per cent.

In all the groups characterised by sexual equality known through anthropological research women wielded at least half the economic power (Blumberg, 1984). It is interesting to note that in the observed groups there exists no linear relation between sexual equality and gender differentiation. Sexual equality occurs when women and men do the same things and do not overtly stress their biological features, that is to say, gender differentiation does not exist. But sexual equality also occurs when there is a clear gender differentiation and when the fields of activities are segregated according to gender. And finally there is sexual equality in groups with higher gender differentiation and at the same time more cooperation between the genders in relation to different fields of activity. Once again the decisive factor in all three constellations is the economic parity of women.

Of course, these observations must be relativised as all of these groups are small in numbers. Their group structures are easily comprehensible as are their organisational and technical levels. In all more populous human associations whose political, economic and stratification systems are correspondingly more complex, throughout the various stages of development male dominance - especially the control of economic power - has asserted itself in no uncertain way.

I will not go into the possible reasons for this seizure of power but wish merely to stress that sexual equality can hardly be achieved without undoing male control of economic power. The control of economic power exerts influence on such varying and relevant areas as fertility, marriage, divorce, premarital sex, ( ... ), freedom of movement, access to education (Blumberg, 1984). We can be certain about one point: The lower women's relative economic power, the more likely they are to be oppressed physically, politically and ideologically" (p. 75.).

The following observations exemplify the connection between equality and violence:

Physical oppression of women, especially men's violence against women, occurs less in the anthropologically investigated groups in which women have organised themselves into separate economic entities which men do not enter or control.

Men's violence is also less frequent when the future prospects of women facing divorce are good.

Finally, men's violence also occurs less often when men solve their conflicts with other men in a peaceful way.

You can see the work that lies ahead of us and you can also see that perspectives which show up the connections between inner- and extra-family violence are needed.

The relation between sexual inequality and men's violence is obvious and operates both ways. Firstly, insofar as inequality promotes and encourages violence, it is to be interpreted as an expression or consequence of inequality and secondly, inequality is perpetuated and promoted by violence. Here violence is the means, the instrument to maintain and assert inequality. The connection between inequality and violence has been summed up aptly by the Canadian Panel on Violence against Women: "Ending Violence - Achieving Equality".

Although it is certain that unequal structures provide an ideal breeding ground for violence, they are not per se a precondition of violence. Violence is thinkable without inequality. Inequality is, on the other hand, always inextricably bound up with violence, not so much in a physical or psychological sense but more in a structural, that is, economic sense.

Through the means of inequality and dominance it has often been tried to solve the tasks of distribution social groups are faced with. The tricky question is how scarce or finite resources ought to be distributed. Scarce resources include especially material wealth, prestige and power.

Inequality means a social disparity in power, opportunity, privilege and justice between groulps Therefore, inherent in the concept of inequality is a relation in which one or more groups exploit or expropriate another or other groups. "( ... ) [The advantage that one group enjoys depends inextricably on the disadvantage that another suffers. ( ... ) if one group enjoys a larger portion of a finite resource, the only place from which it can have come is the other group or groups who reside in the same social system" (Jackman, 1994, p. 2) respectively in the same social field.

In these struggles for resources or capital there are winners and losers. The winners are defined as dominant groups, the losers as gubordinated groups.

Particular fields are marked more by structural violence (for example, the fields of justice or economics); in others physical and psychological violence dominate (as, for example, in the area of couple relations).

Physical violence (the most obvious form and therefore often the only identified, acknowledged and condemned form of violence) only needs to be practised when structural and psychological violence no longer suffice to maintain the unequal relations.

Physical violence states the highest claim for legitimisation. Therefore, dominant groups try to secure their access to and control of scarce resources for as long as possible without having to apply physical violence. The more established and the more institutionalised the inequalities are, the easier it is to do so. The sooner a group can play down their control as being normal (a matter of concealment), meaning "that's just the way things are", the less they need to legitimise their dominance. And the less need there is for physical acts of aggression "to claim one's due as a member of the advantaged group: benefits simply fall into one's lap" (Jackman, 1994, p. 8). In order to prevent this arrangement of expropriation being called into question, ideologies that cover up the true nature of the arrangement must be created and upheld.

Jackman (1994, book cover) says: ideology becomes the velvet glove, as dominant groups use "sweet persuasion" and thus delimit the moral parameters for political discourse with subordinates. Dominant groups ( ... ) are drawn especially to the ideological mould of paternalism, where the coercion of subordinates is grounded in love, rather than hate. ( ... ) Love, affection and praise are offered to subordinates on strict condition that the subordinates comply with the terms of the unequal relationship". If the subordinates no longer wish to comply with these terms, alternative methods of persuasion must be found. These include open, direct uses of violence.

The institutionalisation of the relations of inequality, the system of varying ranks is known as stratification. A stratified society organises its members according to their access to scarce resources. "Sexual stratification refers to the extent of difference between the overall status of women and men within a society" (Chafetz, 1980, P. 105).

Weber differentiated between three levels of stratification: the economic (wealth and income), the political (power) and the social prestige dimension (status). In all dimensions the inequality of women to men is striking. I have already referred to the economic inequality. I wish to add - in agreement with what has been said so far - that economic inequality is the "pi~ce de resistance" of sexual inequality. While compared to the rest of Europe, the Nordic countries have made great progress towards equality on the second dimension, i.e. the political, they have experienced unparalleled difficulties on the economic level. The Group of Specialists on Equality and Democracy of the Council of Europe 1996 states in the final report (p. 15): "Nordic women are still strongly under-represented in administrative and commercial elites, and although there is a large presence of women on the labour market, they play only a very minor role in the control of this markeV.

With regard to the political dimension of stratification, one could mention for the EU the (under-)representation of women in parliaments, which amounted in 1994 to 16.4% (varying from a maximum of 40 to a minimum of 5 %).

The social dimension of inequality is also worth a closer look. This dimension has to do with what people think of you. If people think poorly of you, you have a low level of prestige. As already mentioned, by definition, prestige is a finite resource, too.

Inequality on the social dimension is perhaps less obvious and less tangible. Here I wish to refer to a study carried out by Broverman and others (1972). In this study psychiatrists, psychologists and social workers were asked to describe the characteristics of a mentally healthy human being, of a mentally healthy man and of a mentally healthy woman. The image of the mentally healthy human being correlated to a large degree to that of the mentally healthy man. However, the image of a mentally healthy woman deviated in essential points from the other two images. This means nothing other than that according to the persons questioned, many of the characteristics considered desirable in a woman were in fact those of a mentally unhealthy person. Or put differently: women are mentally healthy when they are sick compared to a human being, that is, a man.

The logic of the different attributions has been summed up by MacKinnon (1994) in a critique of the Aristotelian theory of law (which constitutes to a large extent our understanding of law): Equals are to be treated equal. Unequals are to be treated unequal. The legitimatisation of unequal treatment is based on the attribution of different features. These features (which are of a social and not biological nature) are reproduced in our minds and bodies daily in the sense of the doing gender. This is about the differences in a society "on the extent and degree to which males and females are expected to differ, regardless of whether or not they do in fact, on traits of behaviour, personality, interest, and intellecC (Chafetz, 1980, p. 106).

Here I wish to refer to a survey, which is worth mentioning although I am well aware that any conclusions which can be drawn from it are limited as it involved interviewing a special sample of men, namely readers of a fashion magazine for men.

4000 men were asked last year which characteristics they wished women to have: self-assertion domesticity intelligence an attractive appearance reliability a sense of humour faithfulness self-confidence

Here are the answers of the men:

We wish women to have the following characteristics:

an attractive appearance 94%
faithfulness 87%
reliability 84%
domesticity 48%
a sense of humour 36%
self-confidence 28%
intelligence 19%
self-assertion 17%

The study is, as I said, not above criticism froin the methodological point of view, yet can be considered as an indication that men wish women to be different from themselves.

These desired or ascribed characteristics or resources of women can obviously not be transformed so easily into status, as "If status is based on resources and women have lower status than men, then we have to assume that women have fewer resources or that their resources are not easily converted to status" (Nielsen, 1990, p. 240).

Which resources are most likely to lead to status: origin, education, class (income, wealth), race, ethnicity, age and of course, gender?

When, however, women cannot transform the saine acquired resources (e.g. university degrees) or inherited resources (e.g. origin) or other attributed resources (gender) into the saine proportion of status (e.g.income) and - should this connection be revealed - then a problem of justification arises.

This problem in relation to unequal opportunities and the unequal treatment is legitimised by the constructed otherness.

Inequality does not correspond - as MacKinnon (1994) shows - to difference (as Aristotle thought) but to hierarchy. Whoever is below may be treated unequally, and not: whoever is different.

Gender differentiation which is, in fact, a measurement of stereotypes "does not imply inequality". It is logically possible to talk about "separate (different) but equal". Empirically, it appears [at least as far as complex societies are concerned] that being different is strongly associated with unequal, that is, that degree of gender differentiation and degree of sexual stratification are highly correlated" (Chafetz, 1984, p. 106).

To treat unequally means: not to grant the same rights, not to bestow the same privileges, to block access (official or unofficial), to exclude from spheres of influence, decision-making processes, discussions, to keep down, to use, to exploit, to put people in their place, in short: to treat badly. This also includes violent behaviour.

Violence and unequal treatment are closely connected. If - with regard to the aforementioned studies - self-assertion is important for men and an attractive appearance is important for women, men have few reservations about using violence against women in the struggle for control over economic, cultural and social capital. That is the logic of inequality. That they get away with it is part of the logic of the fields in which men encounter women, here especially in connection with relations between the particular fields (e.g. family, justice, economics).

Violence appears in this logic not so much às an individual personal act or decision (although violence is also this to a certain degree) but acts of violence are prescribed strategies in body and mind, they are day-to-day practices for solving conflicts or for pushing through distribution among members of groups of special features. The logic of inequality is a logic of practice. Therefore, it is not so much a matter of trying to determine the motives of individuals, but more importantly of looking into the logic of relations between groups.

Inequality and its relation to power has been examined in a study by Yllo (1983). Sexual inequality was measured by a status index of women. This consisted of 4 dimensions: of an economic dimension (e.g. median income), of an educational dimension (e.g. post-secondary enrolment: % female), of a political dimension (e.g. merabers of state house) and of a legal dimension (e.g. equal pay laws).

On the basis of this index, the status of women in 30 states in the US was determined. Then severe violence against wives was measured and was correlated with the status index. The result of that study appears in appendix.

The curvilinear relation between the status of women and the rate of severe violence against wives first shows a reduction of violence with the growing status of women, that is, decreasing inequality. However, with increasing equality this trend reverses. One can only speculate as to the further development of the curve. It would seem plausible to assume that with continuing decreasing inequality the rate of violence will fall again, as then women will be in a better position (thanks to their higher overall status) to take counter-action and to lead their lives independent of a man. In parallel, the ensuing larger participation of women in spheres of power in society would then seriously question the societal acceptance of domestic violence.

The results of Yllo confu-m that the highest level of violence occurs precisely where the highest level of inequality prevails. Nevertheless, with decreasing inequality there is not a linear drop in violence (at least not within this range of status differences).

It appears that with the increasing influence of women, the privileges of men are being challenged and threatened, all that was taken for granted in the arrangement between the sexes is beginning to falter, the pressure on men to do something is rising. Men as a group are likely to attempt to restore the previous state of inequality. Everyday practices are sluggish and are not flexible in their response to social change. The struggle for attractive capital continues also in a society where there is less inequality.

Likewise, in sexually equal societies, violence will not be obliterated. But, and that is a decisive difference - the struggle - or if you prefer, the postmodern terin "dialogue" - for power, influence and resources such as self-determination and freedom of movement will be carried on under equal conditions.

Critics of a gender democracy think that if violence still continues anyhow in more egalitarian societies (even at a reduced level), why invest in equality at all (particularly with the risk of a backlash)? The answer is: on the one hand, democracies without gender equality are not true democracies and, on the other hand, the c6sts of violence for women, and in turn fer society, are enormous.

According to an estimation of a study carried out by the World Bank "the global health burden from gender-based victimisation among women age 15 to 44 is comparable to that posed by other risk factors and diseases already high on the world agenda, including HIV, tuberculosis, sepsis during childbirth, cancer and cardiovascular disease" (Heise, 1993a, p. 17).

Empirical analysis has shown that the economy is also affected by absenteeisra froin work due to the number of days women are off sick as a result of acts of violence. A study by Gelles and Strauss (1988) in the USA shows that women subjected to severe violence are unable to work because of ülness for double the annual average of registered sick days.

"Violence poses a powerful obstacle to achieving other goals that are high on the development agenda" (Heise, 1993b, p. 21).

To sum up:

Violence of men against women is at one and the saine time a means and expression of the conditions of inequality between men and women.

Systems of inequality must - unless they want to collapse - be reproduced daily. The rules of inequality must be recalled and confirmed. The actors must remain in the fields of unequal relations, as where there are no actors, the rules become obsolete and the field loses its power. From this we can see the explosive potential of segregated worlds (spheres over which the excluded have no control), likewise the threat to heterosexual arrangements from homosexuals' constructions of social life.

If the relations between the groups struggling for control of capital change and consequently the logic underlying the social fields, then the means of upholding these relations inevitably change too.

History is not the result of rational decisions (a fact which could give reason for hope). This means, for example, that even if men as a group joined up with women - there is no sign of this at present - this would not automatically result in gender equality and by no means a violence-free society. But even if men continue to back away from gender equality, it is not only up to them to keep up these relations.

Men will not give up the advantages of the present arrangement between the genders without a fight, despite the resulting disadvantages of this arrangement for themselves.

Men have incorporated the experience of hegemonial dominance and have deduced everyday practices from it. The practical sense used within the gender relationship has, all in all, paid off for men. Men belong even in the worst of cases to the privileged gender, that is to the gender which is granted more status/power/influence per gender.

This practical sense is extremely slow to change. Only when the structure of a field (the relations between the particular groups, the economic rules and regularities) is radically different; only when the schemas of perception, of thinking and of behaviour (in short: Bourdieu's habitus) seem to be seriously inadequate, only then will the habitus attempt to change or will men change over to a different field while clinging onto the usual habitus.

Inequality is from a humanist or radical point of view not only undesirable, but is to be condemned in all forms. Yet from the position of the dominant groups, inequality is logical and practical.

Equating difference with inequality provides men with an instrument to use violence against women when other forms of control no longer suffice.

It would be worth, leaning on Yllo, investigating whether there are signs in the European countries of a trend towards more gender equality d if this implies a reduction of violence against women.

As there is no way of by-passing sexual equality on the way to less violent social interaction,

any registration of a short-term rise in violence could be interpreted as a desperate flare-up of the dominant groups, perhaps even as a sign of an approaching and long-awaited social change.

In this sense I wish the female public perseverance in their struggle for equality.

And I wish the male public, myself included, the mastery of paradoxical action which is what is required if men are to relinquish their privileges.


Blumberg, R. L. (1984). A general theory of gender stratification. In: R. Collins (ed.), Sociological theory (pp. 23-101). San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Broverman, I. K. et al. (1972). Sex role stereotypes: A current appraisal. Journal of Social Issues, 28(2), 59-78.

Chafetz, J. S. (1980). Toward a macro-level theory of sexual stratification and gender differentiation. In: Current Perspectives in Social Theory, Vol. 1 (pp. 103-125). Greenwich, CT: JAI Press.

Gelles, R. J. & Straus, M. A. (1988). Intimate violence: The causes and consequences of abuse in the American family . New York: Simon and Schuster.

Heise, L. L. (1993a). Violence against women: The hidden health burden. Washington, D.C.: The World Bank.

Heise, L. L. (1 993b). Violence against women. World Health, 46(l), 2 1.

Jackman, M. R. (1994). The velvet glove: Paternalism and conflict in gender, class, and race relations. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.

Levinson, D. (1989). Family violence in cross-cultural perspective. Beverly Hills: Sage.

MacKinnon, C. A. (1994). "Equality remade": An equality approach to violence against women. In: J. Dohnal (ed.), Test the West: Gender democracy and violence (pp. 71-79). Vienna: Austrian Federal Ministry of Women's Affairs.

Nielsen, J. M. (1990). Sex and gender in society: Perspectives on stratification, 2nd ed. Prospect Heights, IL: Waveland Press.

Yllo, K. (1983). Sexual equality and violence against wives in American States. Journal of Comparative Family Studies, 14(l), 67-86.

Yllo, K. & Straus, M. A. (1990). Patriarchy and violence against wives: The Impact of structural and normative factors. In: M. Straus & R. J. Gelles (eds.), Physical violence in American families: Risk factors and adaptations to violence in 8,145 families. New Brunswick, N.J.: Transaction Publishers.


Report on sub-theme 1 a

by Dr Walter HOLLSTEIN

New roles for men and the beneirit for theinselves and their children

Preliminary notes:

- Women are not mentioned in the official title of the theme, they are nevertheless taken into consideration in this paper.

- The following remarks are limited to heterosexual men;

- The rapporteur, comingfrom a German-speaking country, refers mainly to experiences and projects of the "men's movement" in Austria, Ger7nany and Switzerland.

1. The traditional masculine role

Masculinity is traditionally associated with power, exercising control and being strong. The following assumptions emerge from this male stereotype:

- Men's dominance is essential for proving their masculinity.

- Power, competition and control are necessary ingredients to establish manhood and to confirm it.

- Men's work and career are the most important measures of being male.

- Men believe that personal happiness will be guaranteed by hard work and achievement.

- Self-definition and self-respect depend essentially on success and achievement.

- Emotions and feelings in men are signs of femininity

- Vulnerability demonstrates (feminine) weakness and should therefore be avoided.

- Control of self and others are indispensable for men to feel safe.

- Seeking help or support proves a man to be weak and feminine.

- Intimacy and friendship with other men are dangerous because of competition; intimacy implies the danger of homosexuality.

- The fear of femininity is controlled by rational thought.

- Men subordinate women by using dominance and power and, if neither works, by violence.

- Sexuality is a primary tool for proving men's masculinity (see: O'Neil 1982; Zulehner1993).

2. The disadvantages of traditional masculinity

The above-mentioned assumptions have been proven as having negative effects on men. O'Neil describes six general constraints of traditional masculinity:

restrictive emotionality; homophobia; socialised control, power and competition issues; restricted sexual and affectionate behaviour; obsession with achievement and success; health problems (1982).

"The fear of femininity contributes to men's restrictive emotionality and their difficulties in

accepting and expressing emotions. These difficulties are related to the socialised values of the Masculine Mystique. Men restrict their emotions because they fear that their feelings will be associated with femininity and this will threaten their masculine roles ... Consequently, men develop a cognitive-rationalistic approach to people and life in general". (O'Neil 1982, 24).

The cost of always being dominant, controlling and competitive is actually high. Men who

frequent "men's centres" in Austria, Germany and Switzerland report the following deficits:

increasing problems in marriages and relationships; a growing number of men confess to being unable to compete with women;

emotional insecurity; more and more men cannot cope with female emancipation and

independence of modem women; '

sexual problems such as impotence, premature ejaculation, indifference, etc;

reduced vitality and "joie de vivre", increasing frustration and lethargy, lack of ambition;

lack of real (male) friends and social networks, isolation and anxiety; absence of adequate capacities to cope with emotional problems and difficulties in daily life; consequently taking refuge in alcohol, drugs, stress-related disease, risktaking, vandalisra or violence (Mannege 1989).

In spite of our society's view of males it is obvious that men can definitely be victims of their

own masculine role.

3. Changing masculinity

Five principal reasons seem. to be responsible for the changes in traditional masculinity:

  • the dramatic development of the labour market; one of its consequences is that there is less opportunity for men to get identity and self-respect from paid work;
  • the increasing pluralism and individualism of our contemporary post-industrialist society; this means that the once monolithic masculinity becomes pluralistic itself (Brittan 1989);
  • the ecological crisis and the bankruptcy of (male) natural sciences (Merchant 1980) are devaluing analytic thought, rationality and the subordination of nature;
  • feminism and the emancipation of women have been challenging men's hold on power and privileges for three decades;
  • men's suffering from the constraints and deficits of their own male condition (Goldberg 1979; Hunter 1990).


In this state of affairs there may be a new chance for men who want to seize the opportunity. Research shows that increased discomfort occurs particularly among those men whose own role is not changing (Pleck 1987; Parpat 1994). In fact, the alternative to not changing seems far worse today.

On the other hand, the accumulation of changes provokes fear and disorientation (Astrachan 1986; Badinter 1986). In the past, men knew who they were; their tasks and roles were specified in a very detailed manner. Actually, men are losing their gender certainty (Brittan 1989; Badinter 1992). For many men, feminism has only compounded this confusion, as it demands more male responsibility in relationships and education, a fundamental, change of male attitudes and the sharing of power and income with women. So, change in gender conditions for many men presents more of a threat than an opportunity (Goldberg 1979; Solomon/Levy 1982).

4. "New Men"

"Child of our time, the new man is all about us .... peering nonchalantly down from advertising hoardings, dropping his trousers in the launderette ... In the street, holding babies, pushing prams, collecting children, shopping with the progeny .. The new man is a rebel and an outlaw from hardline masculinity .." (Chapman 1988, 225). Many men are changing, without the new models of masculinity having replaced the traditional. ones. The most important segments of change, as research studies in the German speaking countries have proven (Metz-Gôckel/Müller 1986); Hollstein 1990 (Germany); Hollstein 1989; Corso 1990 (Switzerland); Zulehner 1993 (Austria" are as follows:

a. the balance of emotions

Men are reintegrating their feminine side and developing feelings, sensuality, passivity, vulnerability and the capacity to ask for help. Men are striving for a wider repertoire of emotions and human possibilities, but remain still male.

b. new aims in work and career

Men are exploring new options in their workplace. They are more willing to abandon jobs where their aims and wishes for personal growth are not accepted. New men learrit that frustration, subordination, boredom and resistance to change are crucial obstacles to personal satisfaction and male emancipation. Those men no longer hide their envy, their anger and their ambitions. The new man doesn't insist on being the sole or dominant earner of the family income.

c. men's attitudes towards women

All empirical studies show clearly that men's attitudes towards women have changed substantially for the better (Bundesministerium für Frauen und Jugend 1992). New men are capable of appreciation, sensitivity, intimacy, nurture and commitinent to, women (see: Ehrentreich 1984; Astrachan 1986; Zulehner 1993). They share a vision of equality between both sexes. "The new man supports women's quests for independence and equality with more than lip service. He works in his own workplace for equal pay for equal or comparable work and equal chances of promotion for his female colleagues" (Astrachan 1986, 402). At home, the new man considers his partner's career as equally important as his own.

d. men and family work

Men today are accepting to do far more housework and to spend more time on educational tasks. There is no longer any dispute in literature that fathers have become more involved in childcare over the last decade. "Looking at modem fatherhood ( ... ) we can detect a change in men's attitude towards childcare, a change in their experiences of fatherhood and ( ... ) a change in psychological perspective on the importance of the father's role" (Segal 1990, 33). More and more fathers regard their presence in education as an important part of their lives.

e. friendship and male networks

New men are getting rid of the barriers that have separated them. from each other. The competitive attitude which is the reason for men avoiding friendship and intimacy with other men is no longer an obstacle. Men among themselves develop the capacity to tell each other the real problems and needs of their lives. They become able to take and give support and comfort to each other. Men are developing their own male networks as women did in the past. These male support systems have ihe positive fanction of limiting their emotional dependency on women (Goldberg 1979); so, men become more autonomous and simultaneously free women from the task of being their sole source of emotions, intimacy and help.

5. Barriers for change

Change is not easy and carries a number of obstacles. So, the "new man" doesn't often exist in the pure form described above. He is more or less a mixture of new and traditional elements and of contradictions which are, in the individual case, not easy to live with. Psychological and social resistance still prevent men from more innovation, which could be realised in the actual constellation of our post-industrialist societies.

a. psychological barriers

Male changes occur mostly in cognitive dimensions. More and more men accept the principle of equality between the sexes, but have problems acting according to this norm in daily life.

An interesting study, initiated by the Swiss govemment, about attitudes of men towards women in high positions, shows that working men change positively in their acceptance of working women, even when these are ranked higher than themselves. But intemalised traditions, role stereotypes and inner images are often limiting the cognitive process (BWI 1995).

Most men accept changes in the general gender balance of society more easily than in their own relationships (Ryffel-Gericke 1983; Metz-Göckel/Müller 1986).

Men are active in their professional. context, but rather passive at home. The proportion of domestic work is still weighted heavily towards women (Lehner/Klann 1997).

Men are limiting their educational tasks to the hedonistic activities of childcare such as playing, walking, TV-consumption, etc. (Hollstein 1990).

More and more men suffer from sexual and physical problems because of new women's sexual assertiveness (Schmidt 1996).

The male identity is less stable than the female one. The main reason for that lies in the complex fact of the young boy's &-identification with his mother because of having the opposite/ether sex (Olivier 1980).

"The collective power requirements of male society might be seen as an expression of a latent need on the part of far too many men to "take their revenge" on their dominant mothers, child minders or nursery-school teachers who exercised control over them when they were children" (Swedin 1995).

b. social barriers

Male wishes and professional reality are less and less congruent. So, in German speaking countries, two-thirds of husbands rank the family higher than work and career in their importance for life and satisfaction and more than one-third want a better balance between family and work, demanding a reduction of working hours in favour of their time with wife and children (Hollstein. 1989; Corso 1990; Madôrin undated (Switzerland); Zulehner 1993; Lehner/Klann 1997 (Austria); Hollstein 1990; Bundesministerium. 1995 (Germany). Strong obstacles from employers in private industry and the state block the realisation of change.

Male resistance is bound up with persisting gender traditions and routines which characterise most of the social, economic and political structures of post industrialist society (see: Kimmel 1987; Segal 1990; Badinter 1992).

Men who set up new models of life with women and children are still discriminated against as being effeminate, as sissies, cowards, etc.

Power and control are much more highly ranked in official social value-systems than nurturing and childrearing. So, limiting career and working time still happens under the sign of rentinciation instead of gain.

The male role has still very much got its material advantages. Fewer men are unemployed than women, men earn more money, even if they do the same jobs as women and have much better career opportunities than women (Zulehner 1993; Hollstein 1995).

6. The reality of change

The change of traditional masculinity is an important factor in our time (Badinter 1986). Progress is undeniable, although sometimes ambivalent.

a. the facts of change

men became more introspective

- men changed fundamentally their image of women

- men accentuate more the value of family than that of career

- men are more willing to, take responsibility at home or at least to help

  • men are opting more and more for co-parenting
  • men are more interested in social relationships (Goldberg 1979; Solomon/Levy 1982; Kimmel 1987; Parpat 1994; Haffner 1997).

In this scale, fatherhood is generally valued as probably the most important factor for male change: "As co-parenting increasingly becomes the norm, the norm for male behaviour will change. Empathy, emotional connectedness, concern for others will come to be accepted as masculine qualities. This will lead to a significant decrease in men's battering their wives and children." (Nfiedzian 1991, 95).

b. People who are changing

The existing empirical research about men reveals a chain of factors favourable to change:

age: between 28 and 42

status: married, with children. Zulehner points out that an emancipated women

facilitates change and growth of her (male) partner; all studies emphasise the

importance of having children for a man's change by learning nurturing, patience,

empathy, etc.

place of residence: cities

class: upper and lower middle classes

profession: middle to high ranking jobs, but low career ambition (see: Ryffel-Gericke1983)

political attitude: liberal, alternative (green), moderate left.

Religion is obviously no longer of importance for male changes.

There is a prototype of male change to be constructed: the man is between 28-42 years old, a teacher, a psychologist, a social worker or a medical doctor by profession, he is Middle class, married to a working woman, has two children, engaged in neighbourhood or in ecological projects and votes for a green or left-wing party (Hollstein 1990).

C. places of change

- relationship with an emancipated partner (Zulehner 1993)

- child-caring (Nfiedzian 1991; Brzoskafflaffner undated)

- father's group

- men's group

- therapy (Scher 1987; Parpat 1994).

Men's group experience over a longer period (average about three years) shows the following important results (Bonnekamp 1988; Hainback/Kiessling 1992; Parpat 1994):

- men develop self-interest and self-respect

- men become more introspective

- men change towards work and career

- men are more interested in family and child-care

- men develop a higher degree of intimacy and confidence towards women

- men are looking for (male) friends.

These statistics should not be neglected, nor should they be overeraphasised. The men's movement in the general context of post-industrialist society represents only a minority phenomenon.

7. Recommendations

The gender debate is largely dominated by women. Consequently it is generally reduced to women's issues. Men, standing apart, ignore the importance of the gender debate and do not feel involved. Following this, women's emancipation is slowed down by the ignorance and apathy of the male majority. Without any substantial progress on the men's side, all efforts on the women's side will finally be limited (HoIlstein 1996). Therefore, it is necessary to put the issue of men in a wider context, too.

All experiences in this field demonstrate that specific efforts have positive results; so, Miedzian notes that by increasing nurturing among young men, violence was decisively decreased (1991); Swedin reports that after the Swedish government decided to set up an experimental training period for fathers, a remarkably higher proportion of Swedish men took a longer period of "father's leave" (Swedin 1995, 124); Parpat points out that after participation in a man's group, men developed more intimacy and communicative capacities towards their female partner (1994). Agaînst this background of selected experience, there is a set of measures to propose:

  • work with boys
  • nurturing programmes for boys in schools
  • promotion of men's groups
  • telephone counselling service for men (example: Netherlands)
  • crisis centre for men (example: Sweden)
  • further education for men in order for them to become more positively disposed and cooperative towards women (BWI 1995)
  • the promotion of men's studies
  • the practice of public consciousness-raising among men (exaraple: the project "Halbe- Halbe" of the Austrian "Frauenministerium" for the reconciliation of job and family;the Austrian "Volksbegeren" 1997)
  • concrete measures, to ease compatibility of career and family for men and women (possibilities of part-time work; individual agreements with the employer; leaveagreements; family-friendly companies (Ministerium Baden-Württemberg 1991;Hosemann 1992).

Those were the facts. How should they be evaluated?

For a long time, our masculinity seemed to go without saying. No one dreamed of challenging men. Without the feminist movement, this state of affairs would probably never have changed, because men were socially and politically powerful and saw no need to call into question their own condition as males. Thus, feminist studies were the first to contest male domination, by systematically elaborating a theory of patriarchy. The result, for men and women alike, was to demystify several centuries of male power. More concretely, men -who throughout the course of history viewed themselves as creators of civilisation and culture, as the protectors of women and children, as sages, saints, healers, scholars and the founders of humanity's great religions - suddenly found themselves unmasked as the ones who started all the wars, who destroyed nature with their rationality and insensitivity and who were aggressors, rapists, abductors and sex maniacs of every kind.

The logical consequence was the deconstruction of the traditional male role and the increasing difficulty which many men experienced in continuing to identify with a what appeared to be an outmoded notion of masculinity. Moreover, there were hardly any specific models representing a different or new way to be masculine. As a result, sociologies, psychologies, psychiatrists, physicians and therapists have noted a dramatic loss of self-assurance among men which is reflected, among other things, in sexual malfunction and specifically male illnesses.

It seems to me very important not to disregard the orientation difficulties men are facing today. On the contrary, they must be taken seriously. If they are not, every effort by men to change is doomed to fail. It is one matter to criticise the historical and contemporary effects of male hegemony, and another to understand the ambivalence and problems of the individuals who have to assume the male role.

The response to feminist studies took the form of "men's studies", in which three schools of thought can be observed: the anti-feminist, the feminist and the independent. In my opinion, the position of the independent school is the most persuasive. Those who defend it share the feminist analysis of our society, while adding to the postulate of the male aggressor that of the male victim. This notion has consequences at a number of levels:

1. Every man is part of the male hegemony, but not every man is necessarily an agent of the patriarchy, or, as Ms Moberg put it in lier statement, "men are better than male society".

2. Incorporated in the male role is a difficult dialectic of social dominance and social constraint, of violence and suffering, of power and personal impotence.

3. The male hegemony does not present a uniform, hermetic structure, but a socio-political formation with variations, stratifications and many disparities. Not only are there men who oppress women and children, there are also men who oppress other men.

Without wanting in any way to excuse it, it should be pointed out that in 75% of all cases, the victims of male violence are men.

4. The aggressor can also be the victim of his own male role, a correlation which is very often seen in sexual offences.

Empirical research in the area of men's studies has clearly shown that six constraints are inherent in the male role:

  • reduced emotionality;
  • homophobia;
  • the urge to control, compete with and take possession of others;
  • limited relations in the areas of emotions and sexuality;
  • an obsession with success;
  • health problems, such as early mortality and the predominance of men in psychiatric care.

In our contemporary society, these constraints are invariably the best guarantee of succeeding socially. But they certainly do not point the way to happiness and inner satisfaction.

The male role is ambivalent. From childhood, men are trained to function in a materialist world of work, competition, struggle and success. To survive, they must abandon early on all emotions of weakness, mourning and sadness and any disposition to introspection. At the same time, in order to succeed they must refrain from showing understanding, sympathy and solidarity. The male role in the patriarchal society accentuates external values and neglects men's inner self.

To compensate, many men take refuge in'alcohol, violence, overworking, accumulation of duties and posts of responsibility etc.

What is to be done?

It is certainly right to criticise realism as a dangerous philosophy, as Ms Elworthy will do in her contribution tomorrow. On the other hand, engaging in an intellectual game to draw up a scenario for revolutionary change would be unwarranted.

The history of the patriarchy is deeply entrenched in our cultural, social, political and economic structures - and that is not all: men and women in contemporary society have absorbed this patriarchal history into their habits, emotions and thought patterns. To change all that requires a revolution the likes of which would make even the projects of a Robespierre or a Karl Marx seem like minor experiments.

In view of past experience, I would propose activities at three different levels:

1. At the macro-structural level, it is important, firstly, to provide men with new models for evaluating gainful activity and family life.

Secondly, there is a need for an educational campaign to make it easier for adolescents to find the male role that suits them; work with boys should be stepped up.

Lastly, it is necessary to enlarge the debate on men's issues to include more men from outside middle-class and academic circles. To cite one example, the Austrian govemment has shown in several large-scale campaigns how to interest the average man in household and paternal duties, problems of sexual discrimination etc.

2. At the level of the men's liberation movement, it is important to devote closer scrutiny to the male condition today. More generally, the movement should propose its own projects for orientation, assistance and counselling.

3. At the individual level, those who are in a privileged position - physicians, teachers, psychologists and lawyers - should be more courageous in setting concrete examples of change.

The history of patriarchy is a long one, whereas the history of male change only began some 20 years ago. The findings of empirical research now available are encouraging, but far from revolutionary (see 6.). The male question has only just been posed. Elisabeth Badinter is right to note that it is men who are now the dark continent.

I think that many of the answers we propose are too simplistic. Needless to say, the male question is one that involves a new distribution of work between the two sexes, access of women to positions of responsibility, a decision by men to stop at long last trying to monopolise power, fair wages, legislation to do away with all discrimination etc. But it does not stop there. The socialisation of men entails the difficult and often exhausting battle to become a male. The male child is forced to become the opposite of his mother: "Feminine at the outset, he is called upon to abandon'his first homeland and adopt another, one which is opposed and even hostile to iC (E. Badinter). Such a dramatic effort in our socialisation justifies neither a patriarchy nor individual offences, but shows once again that we have taken only the first small steps towards understanding the male condition.


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Badinter, Elisabeth: L'un est l'autre. Paris, 1986

Badinter, Elisabeth: XY. De l'identité masculine. Paris 1992.

Bonnekamp, Thomas A.: Mânnergruppen in Hamburg. Eine empirische Studie. Hamburg

(Phil. Diss) 1988

Brittan, Arthur: Masculinity and Power. Oxford, 1989

Brzoska, Georg/Gerhard Haffner: Môglichkeiten und Perspektiven der Verânderung der Mânner, insbesondere der Vâter-Forschung, Diskussionen und Projekte in den Vereinigten Staaten von Amerika, Schweden und den Niederlanden. Literaturstudie im Auftrag des Bundesministeriums für Jugend, Familie, Frauen und Gesundheit, Bonn o.J.

Bundesministerium für Frauen und Jugend (ed): Gleichberechtigung von Frauen und Mânnem - Wirklichkeît und Einstellungen in der Bevôlkerung. Stuttgart 1992.

Bundesministerium für Familie, Senioren, Frauen und Jugend (ed): Gleichberechtigung von Frauen und Mânnem. Bonn 1996

BWI: Frauen im Kader. Zürich 1990

Chapman, Rowena: The Great Pretender: Variations on the New Man Theme, in: Chapman/Rutherford

Chapman, Rowena/Jonathan Rutherford (eds): Male Order, London 1988 Corso: Arbeits- und Arbeitszeîtgestaltung in der Schweiz, Zürich 1990

Ehrentreich, Barbara: A Feminist's View of the New Man, in: New York Times Magazine, 20.5.1984

Equality Affairs Division of the Ministry of Health and Social Affairs, Sweden (ed): Men on Men. Stockholm 1995

Goldberg, Herb: The New Male. New York, 1979

Haffner, Thomas: Schutzraum für das Unbekannte. Mânnergruppen: Was sie sind und wie sie wirken, in: Mânnerforum (Kassel) 16, 1997

Hainbach, Sigurd/Waldermar Kiessling: Die praktische Arbeit des Münchner informationszentrums für Mânner, in: Weilbach/Kiessling (eds)

Hollstein, Walter: Der Schweizer Mann. Zürich 1989

HolIstein, Walter: Die Mânner - vorwârts oder zurfick? Stuttgart 1990 Hollstein, Walter: Der Kampf der Geschlechter. München 1995

Hollstein, Walter: Ende der Frauenpolitik? Zur unvollendeten Emanzipation von Mânnem und Frauen, in: Aus Politik und Zeitgeschehen, Bonn B 42 1996

Hosemann, Wilfried et al: Vereinbarkeit von Beruf und Familie - ein Thema auch für mânnliche Mitarbeiter? Kôln 1992

Hunter, Mic: Abused Boys: The Neglected Victims of Sexual Abuse: Lexington, Mass. 1990 Kimmel, Michael (ed): Changing Men. New Directions in Research on Men and Masculinity, London 1987

Lehner, Erich/Notker Klann: Mânner in der Familie - Vâter in der Beratung, in: Dialog/Wien, 1, 1997

Madôrin, Kurt: Mânner zwischen Küche und Karriere. 3. Schweizer Mânnerkongress, Liestal


Mannege Berlin, in: Fraktion der SPD (ed) Die Frauenfrage als Mânnerfrage. Bonn 1989

Merchant, Carolyn: The Death of Nature. Women, Ecology and the Scientific Revolution. London 1980

Metz-Gôckel, Sigrid/Ursula Müller: Der Mann. Weinheim/Basel 1986

Miedzian, Myriam: Boys will be boys - How we encourage violence in our sons and what we

can do to stop it. New York/London 1991

Ministerium für Arbeit, Gesundheit, Familie und Frauen Baden-Württemberg (ed): Mütter und

Vâter zwischen Erwerbsarbeit und Familie. Stuttgart 1991.

Olivier, Christiane: Les enfants de Jocaste. Paris, 1980

O'Neil: Gender role Conflict and Strain in Men's Lives, in: Solomon/Levy

Parpat, Joachim: Mânnlicher Lebenswandel durch langfristige Mânnergruppenarbeit: Zur

Überwindung des patriarchalischen Syndroms. Berlin (Phil. Diss) 1994

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Park, London 1987

Schmidt, Gunter: Das Verschwinden der Sexualmoral. Hamburg 1996

Segal, Lynne: Slow Motion. Changing Masculinities, Changing Men. London 1990.

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"Mannsein in Osterreich". Wien 1993.


Report on sub-theme 1 b


Equality between women and men: better life, better society?
Men are better than male society

Equality has long been seen as mainly a women's problem. But those who work seriously with this issue sooner or later realise that, in the final analysis, it is a men's problem. Correspondingly, the roots of the so-called "Jew question" in the Third Reich were not problems with the Jews, but with the National Socialists (disregarding ali other comparisons).

The male gender role is the key.

"The day men begin to discuss themselves, as males, that day humanity will enter a new era". Thus spoke the remarkable Swedish author Klara Johansson about a century ago.

By way of background, let me just mention a few realities in the world of today.

Men make up the overwhelming majority of all govemments, except for a few Nordic ones. Women are almost non-existent as board members of large transnational corporations. During the last 25 years, the number of women elected to parliaments has decreased by 25% in the world as a whole. Men own around 90% of the global resources and they earn much more money than women, despite the fact that women perform roughly two thirds of all the work.

Men are responsible for practically all wars and approximately 90% of all criminal acts; of violent and economic crimes, traffic offences etc. and of the three largest categories of illegal world trade - arms and drug sales and prostitution. Media violence imprints the image of the male as a creature who hits, kills and abuses and can nowadays scar infant minds even as young as two years old. Male conflicts over territory, status and prestige poison politics, culture, science and religion. The chain reactions go on and on, to the third and fourth generations and so forth.

Unfortunately, most men react to these facts as if they were a deliberate denigration of men as a sex. They seem far more offended by descriptions of actual male behaviour than by the suffering such behaviour inflicts upon others.

But this apparent denigration is not aimed at men, but at the patriarchal system and all its chain reactions. Only those who uphold the patriarchal system should feel offended.

Wanting to replace the masculine culture with an all-human culture is no sign of hatred towards men. Quite the opposite. It expresses the conviction that men in themselves are far better than male culture.

The struggle against patriarchy has often been seen as a struggle against men. Though easy to understand, this is a tragic misconception. Most feminists are actually men's true friends.

We believe in men, we believe they can face stark facts and handle the consequences. We know that men are better than the patriarchal system.

Fra saying this precisely because I refuse to identify masculinity with brutality, insensitivity and ruthlessness. I rather see those traits as the products of early wounds, social defects and a warped ideal of manhood.

As I see it, masculinity holds an essentially erotic value. Indefinable, but teeming with life, playfulness, warmth and vigour.

One of the most hopeful of current trends, maybe even the most hopeful one, could well be the growing groups of men who reject the system that creates these consequences - patriarchy. They try to re-examine the concept of masculinity. They go to the roots of the reasons why this concept got so perverted. Therefore, they often meet reactions like that of a distinguished Swedish politician and professor in a television programme recently. When this new men's movement was discussed, he declared that he could not see the point; personally, he had no problem being a man! And he loved women!

This is a striking parallel to the reactions that have met most feminists for a long time. However horrible the conditions the femihists tried to put an end to, many other women claimed that they saw no problem; they enjoyed being women! And they loved men!

There are other similarities between feminism and the new men's movement. Both meet reactions like: "No, I want no sex war! I just want to be myself ! " Ironically, this is exactly what it is all about, in both cases; to eliminate the war of the sexes. Everybody should be allowed to be himself or herself.

Of course, the big difference between men's and women's liberation movements is that women have fought from an inferior position and thus have been strongly motivated. The motivation behind the men's movement is weaker. So their task seems more difficult. It takes guts to renounce obvious advantages and step down from a superior position, in order to win moral self-respect. It means to reawaken suppressed parts of the personality, to develop a greater human potential, to be able to meet women as equals, to experience children openly and tenderly and to be a positive model for them.

Just 75 years ago, a Swedish man had the legal right to beat his wife. Earlier in history, he even had the duty to do it. And it's only 35 years since he had the right to rape her within marriage. In many countries, maybe most of them, men still possess these rights. At least, they are not prosecuted if they exercise them.

So I believe that the male emancipation process is an even more complicated and delicate process than the liberation of women. - in some respects.

But men have one great advantage; a strong ally in the opposite camp - feminism. Feminists want the same thing, men's emancipation. They have the same goal, to phase out patriarchy and thus create better relations between the sexes. (I leave aside some separatist factions of feminism).

What is common to the male gender role, practically all over the world, is the idea of being superior, of standing above woman, which is not to say that it applies to all men or all circumstances. In large parts of Africa, Asia or Latin America, this idea is so fundamental that if a woman wants to decide for herself about her own body, her man can apprehend this as a threat, a violation of his masculinity. As long as this concept of masculinity prevails, humanity will never get out of the evil circles of underdevelopment, unwanted and unhappy children, hatred, mistrust and persecution.

It is perfectly obvious that we cannot go on much longer defining masculinity by qualities that in themselves both presuppose and provoke conflicts, violence and war - that is, aggressiveness, conquest and dominance.

Every human being needs a certain amount of aggressiveness, in the sense of defending and forwarding his or her conditions of life and survival.

But to make this a male sex characteristic, and thereby something worth striving for by half of humanity, that is just as destructive and fatal as defining femininity by qualities such as submissiveness and passivity.

"Never try to change a man" women have been told for centuries. Not only by their mothers but also by their husbands, who then proceed to change their wives from happy young girls into bitter old hags.

Certainly men can change and grow! We have seen many a shining example of that in Scandinavia lately. Men can just as easily develop their so-called feminine side as women can develop their so-called masculine side - which, obviously, in both cases, are actually their human sides.

From. an almost hopeless position of inferiority, women have now come so far that they can call for a comparable development in men.

The last century has made a mockery of all the learned men - clergymen, statesmen, men of science - who proclaimed that women's nature was, is and shall be passive, humble, obedient, illogical, incapable of original art or thought. In short, incapable of just about everything except caring, nurture, hard work and housework.

Today, women have prevailed all over, demonstrating enormous initiative, activity, willpower, intelligence, organisational ability and leadership.

They now outnumber men in some universities. They get better grades, even in mathematics. They are alpine skiers, rally drivers, mountain clinibers, deep sea divers and polar explorers, orchestra conductors, ministers of state and elite chess players. While still being women, in every reasonable meaning of the word.

Why on earth should men be unable to change just as quickly and radically as women? Why should they be unable to unfold their capacity for empathy, sensitivity, patience and intimacy? To remove their armour?

Of course they can manage all that! What's lacking is just motivation. And what restrains them is mainly the fear of losing status.

It's dizzying to imagine what the world could gain by such a breakthrough on the part of men. A future without war would be possible. More children would grow up whole and undamaged, physically and mentally. Women would be healthier, happier, less afraid and therefore better as mothers. This would mean nothing less than reaching a higher stage of human evolution ...

Our strength to keep up the good work depends on such kinds of positive, alternative visions. Without them, we end up as reproductions of what we initially intended to change. Yet such visions are consistently being discounted as based on emotions - something very suspect. There is a tacit agreement that feelings are feminine - grief, tenderness, empathy, syrapathy, the desire to protect and to preserve.

But contempt, aggression, curiosity, a hunger for honour or fame, the competitive spirit, being obsessed with a project, loyalty towards a firm, an organisation or a group - these are not called feelings. They are facts. Realities. Feelings are considered less valuable than thoughts and are relegated to one specific category, ie things relating to women.

By training to choke off the so-called feminine feelings, boys and men lose access to one of our most important instruments for navigating through the real world. Without feelings, one no longer understands what is actually going on.

That's why women so often speak to deaf ears.

Something global must happen to make men see themselves from the outside. I suggest a United Nations conference on the role of men and a decade or two focused on masculine culture, as a follow-up to previous UN projects like the Decade of Women and the four large world conferences on women's issues. At the first conference in 1975 it was explicitly stated that important changes could never happen unless the gender role of men was also transformed.

Hasn't the UN enough to do already, one might ask? Certainly. But since the wheels of change grind slowly, we had better start a global exploration of the impact of the patriarchal paradigm. Befère it's too late.

Don't forget that more or less everything the UN must cope with is closely connected to masculine norms. Not only matters of war and technologies of annihilation. Neither the AIDS epidemic nor the population explosion can be handled unless women are allowed control of their own bodies. Furthermore, an economy based on recycling presupposes a new image of masculinity. In 1993, the General Secretary of the UN reported that no sustainable growth can be achieved without significant changes in the male sex role, as well as the female one.

When the sex that is supposed to make the public decisions is detached from love, while the sex that is supposed to give love is detached from, the public decisions, the long-range outcome is bound to become fatal for humanity.


Report on Sub-theme 2 a

by Jorgen LORENTZEN and Per Are LOKKE

Men's violence against women: the need to take responsibility

The problem of violence has become a central part of European politics and of each human being in the European countries. We have heard reports of massive rape rituals in Bosnia, we are witnessing a Belgium in deep sorrow because of the slaughter of its daughters, we are experiencing gang wars in the inner chies. In every country, racism is creating death and pain and gradually the knowledge of violence against women and children in their own homes is reaching our consciousness.

Most of the time, this violence is talked about in the media in terms of gangsters, devils, murderers, bandits, drug addicts, blacks, nazis, rapists or just thieves. Very seldom are the perpetrators talked about as men, and almost never are they understood within the concept of masculinity. Even when the fact undoubtedly is that they are, in almost every case, men. One of the most important things is that we need to know more about how masculinity is created. What does it mean that the violators are men? What implications will this have for the understanding of violence? What is the specific relationship between masculinity and violence? And: How will it influence the politics of violence - the work against violence in the media, in the streets and in society as a whole? These types of questions will be the guidelines of our talk here today.

Let us go straight to the heart of the problem. While the media and the public's attention are concentrated on the violence which occurs; in the publie sphere, they are forgetting the violence in the private sphere. Our claim is that the violence which we see in public is largely rooted in the private sphere. It is violence carried out in the private sphere which is transferred and extended into the public sphere. In other words, it is the private violence which should claim our attention, and it is against this violence that the efforts to combat violence should be directed.

Focusing on private violence will also enable us to bring to bear a clearer gender perspective. Even though we know that women use violence against men and children, private violence mainly consists of men's violence against those nearest to them: girlfriends, wives and children. Let us therefère spend the few minutes we have presenting three perspectives on men's violence against women, in order better to get to know these men.

Think about the following situation:

1. We are in the middle of a therapy session. We know that the man sitting across from us beats his wife. That is why he is here. But what is he telling us? What is his own story about the violence? Well, she had been out with some friends, and had promised to be home at a certain hour. She returns twenty minutes late. When he sees her coming through the door smiling, half apologetically, but nevertheless filled with the excitement of the world outside, he snaps. He hits her. During therapy, he says that he was provoked by the fact that she broke an agreement. It is all her own fault. This is the first mark of men's description of their view of the violence: it is her fault! The leader of the Norwegian centre Alternative to Violence (Alternativ til vold) describes this kind of refusal to accept responsibility on the part of men, thus "I feel small and master this feeling by making her even smaller. I am afraid and overcome this by making her even more afraid. I am hurt and overcome this by hurting her. I am afraid of being left and keep this in check by handcuffing her. I am dependent on her and handle this by making her even more dependent on me. I feel powerless and master the feeling by assuming power and control over my immediate surroundings. I do not think of myself as afraid, I think of her as dangerous. I do not consider myself insecure, I consider her untrustworthy. I do not think of myself as being hurt, I think of her as a witch.

The picture drawn here is truly an amazing one. Men do not describe themselves as the subjects of their own actions. It is the women who are the problem, and it is the women who act in such a way that the men have to react. Interviews with abusive men show a striking lack of insight: They do not remeniber, they do not know and they do not understand what happened. Instead, the men reverse their feelings and project them onto their surroundings. There is an externalising and projection of men's own emotions. These men do not take responsibility for their own actions: in other words, we are left with a violent act with no real perpetrator. Our first perspective, then, is to see the men's actions as an act of violence without a subject.

2. We have reached a later stage in the therapy. The man has started to tell us what he is feeling when she does not return at the time agreed on. He is afraid. Has something happened? He is insecure. Doesn't she love me anymore? Doesn't she care about me, who is left alone at home, waiting? Slowly he begins telling us about violence in his own home when he was a child. His father, who was like a ticking bomb. His mother, sitting in the bedroom crying, with bruises all over her body. Himself as a small boy - the heavy pain in his body with no language to express it, a pain he has never shared with anyone.

A new picture of this man is starting to take shape. A new story is slowly emerging. He is telling us about his own vulnerability and powerlessness. About emotions that have no language and which cannot be communicated. He is describing events in his own life for which there is no place in a man's world. For in a man's world, you are supposed to be tough and bear the hardships you are subjected to. The man in the therapy room is telling us about a sense of insecurity in his own emotional life which, were it known to others, would reveal that he is not actually a real man.

We are now beginning to understand why he insisted earlier that it was the woman who was to blaine for his acts of violence. This feels far safer than admitting his own feelings of insecurity, feelings that break with our idea of genuine masculinity. To be vulnerable is unmanly. This perspective is what we call men's feeling of powerlessness.

3. Still farther on in the therapy sequence the man is starting to wonder why he becomes so angry. He tells us that somewhere inside he feels that he has a right of ownership over the woman. He feels that she should be there for him. When she does not come home exactly at the appointed time she is violating claims lie feels lie has on her. She has, in a sense, broken a law and has to be punished for this. He feels a righteous anger towards her and violence breaks out.

Here we see how he is linking his violence to structures in society between men and women. In our modem-day Europe, the patriarchal idea that men have the power of determination over women still rules the ground. This both makes possible and justifies men's violence towards women. Many men do not even think they are doing anything wrong when they are beating women. The second perspective about men's feelings of helplessness is, in other words, not sufficient for understanding men's violence against women. We must add still another perspective that shows how men want women to nourish their egos, to exist to satisfy men's emotional and sexual needs. We call this perspective the structural legitirnacy of violence.

We have presented three perspectives which can serve as a starting point for understanding the nature of private violence. It has to do with men without a subject, who are blaming their actions on others. It has to do with men who are experiencing a sense of powerlessness and with men who have internalised the feeling of supremacy the patriarchal culture gives us men and who put it into practice in concrete action against those nearest to them. If we combine these three perspectives, we see a man who is largely out of touch with his own emotions, without a sense of subjective responsibifity, who thinks his use of force is justified and legitimate. M%en described this way, it is easy to see how the man using private violence resembles all other men in our society. For we find that much of the same logic is applied in relation to general problems, such as divorce cases, domestic conflicts, in the lack of proper relations between fathers and their children - the idea that it is the women who are creating the problems, that it is they who are making unreasonable demands or putting obstacles in the way, that it is their jobs that create the problems, or a host of other things. Rarely do the men themselves, based on self-reflection and empathy, take on responsibility for their own actions. For this reason, it is impossible to separate the violent man from the rest of us as "different", as a madman. He is one of us, like us and a carrier of the same social structures that give all men privileges in our society.

We emphasise this because our perspectives on the violence itself have great importance for the choice of strategies in the struggle against private violence - and it is important in order to realise the resistance which exists against focusing on this violence. Because there is a great deal of resistance against calling the violence by its true name, namely, men's violence against women.

Our perspective means first and foremost that it is necessary to apply a gender perspective to violence. What we are seeing is masculinity gone astray, masculinity with little room for vulnerability, humility and devotion, a masculinity with a great deal of possessiveness and a masculinity with little capacity for shouldering its own pain and taking on responsibility for that of others. Before we say anything about the strategies in the struggle against the violence we must say something about the mode of existence of this masculinity.

A few years ago in the US, a small study was carried out in one of the country's large prisons. This showed that if there was one thing these men had in common, it was the absence of a father. Probably the same holds true for any prison. The men's descriptions of their fathers will be largely the same - as emotionally absent, physically absent and often as violent. But this is not the only context in which we will hear such stories. A Norwegian study has shown that many of the quite ordinary men questioned also had problems with an absent father. The answers may be categorised thus:

1. I don't quite know what to say about my father, because I didn't really know him.

2. I knew him as a father, but not as a person.

3. My father was absent or remote.

4. When not remote, he was often felt to be aggressive, controlling or tyrannical.

5. Their picture of their fathers is often the reverse image of the impression they themselves want to make.

This father, whom the children do not know is, as someone absent, remote, aggressive, the founder of our masculine culture. In most western countries, statistics showing the enormous extent of the absence of fathers are now emerging. In Europe, there are hundreds of thousands of sons who never see their fathers.

It is through their fathers that the sons are ~ocialised and raised to be men, and if the fathers are not there, the sons' longing for their fathers often proves to take the shape of idealised father-images - where the void is filled by hypermasculinity. The Gennan physician and psychoanalyst Alexander Mitscherlich described the fatherless society as early as 1963.' There is nothing to indicate that the system is very much better today. Recent studies from Norway tell us that fathers with small children are working longer hours than ever to meet financial commitments. The divorce rate is increasing and the result is that thousands of children every year lose day-to-day contact with their fathers. Only one third of divorced fathers manage to maintain regular contact with their children.

We are focusing on the fathers because a Norwegian study of violent men showed that most of them had experienced a violent father.6 They had experienced fathers who abused the mothers and, unfortunately, the sons have a tendency to repeat the patterns set by their fathers. It is important to stress the fact that it was not they, themselves, who had been abused, but they had witnessed their fathers' violence against their mothers.

Another, decisive reason to focus on the fathers is that the sons also bring the private violence with them out into society. A socialisation towards violence in the home will often be supported by a tradition in the film and media industry fixated. with violence which results in the use of violence in conflict situations both at home and in society in general. Violence has a tendency to underscore and emphasise masculinity. An unsure and emotionally crippled young boy may become a tough and feared. man by using violence - he becomes a tough guy in his local environment. In this way, men, for a lack of a secure masculinity, can "elbow their way" into a masculinity of a kind that is well established in society. We are producing images of men which are passing on a violent norm of behaviour to those of our sons who are longing for a good father.

A teenager entering therapy said that he had become a member of the toughest gang in town because throughout his school years he had been taunted for being feminine. Now he wanted to prove to everyone that he, too, was a real man. The initiation was, as in the toughest American movies, to be beaten up by the other merabers of the gang. After that, he was in. But in on what? What did the community of the gang entail? It consisted of going around and beating up others youths, vandalism, and other violent acts directed against their immediate surroundings. In this way, this young boy was trying to beat his path to masculinity.

We can, of course, say a great deal about the tradition of fatherhood in our culture, and about the psychological mechanisms operating in the father/son relationship, but time unfortunately will not permit us to do so here today. Instead, we will use the last few minutes of our time to present some strategies which may contribute to changing today's violent situation. We may summarise these under the heading "the need to take responsibility".

In the previously distributed material, We described two activities which we regard as important, namely the establishment of the treatment centre for violent men: Alternative to Violence (Alternative til vold) and the White Ribbon Campaign. Therefore, we will say no more about these at this point, but only refer to the written material (see appendix). Instead, we would like to say something about what may help give men a greater feeling of responsibility, empathy and self-knowledge. Three concepts which contain a mode of masculinity which shows care instead of violence:

Three strategies:

1. Responsibility for children

Europe today is in need of a revolution of fatherhood. A revolution which involves the fathers saying yes to their children and no to working long hours. A revolution based on the fact that not only women get children, but that men do too. A consciousness which demands a sense of lifelong responsibility towards that which one creates. A revolution where the language is changed - one does not, for instance, babysit one's own child, like fathers do today.

This revolution has started in many countries, where fathers, are now participating fully at births, where they have formed special fathers' groups in connection with first-time births and where fathers have the right to a leave of absence after births. Many men today wish to take their responsibility seriously, and they are important in creating new images of men and fathers as caring persons. These rights must be introduced and developed in all European countries.

But fatherhood involves priorities. Fathers must tell themselves: "I will put my child first". Many men see themselves as indispensable at work - but do they ever ask themselves whether they are indispensable to their children?

But it is also important for the fathers to develop a language that will bring the sons into a different region to that land of toughness which rules the ground in today's male culture. Today we are teaching our sons courage and self-confidence in relation to sports and work. In these areas, they are supposed to work hard and make sacrifices, show what they can do, but we are not teaching them courage and responsibility in relation to their own emotional lives and in relation to their fellow human beings. Sons must be given an emotional education, they must know and give voice to their own emotions. The sons must learn to be able to take responsibility for their own conflicts and vulnerability - and to be able to take responsibility for the results of their own actions.

2. Taking responsibility for one's own actions

Men must dare to show new sides of themselves. Men must dare to break away from a culture of irresponsibility where they are pulling away from the arena of intimacy, where they hide behind grey suits, newspapers and uniforms. If we are to be good guides to our children, we must be able to share our experience, we must be able to talk about our own lives, show our inner lives, create an arena within ourselves which gives room for reflection, listening, compassion and devotion.

We must redefine the nature of our emotibns. We cannot equate emotions and femininity. We must reclaim our emotional lives and, if possible, find a new language to express emotions. At the same time, we must learn from women. It must be possible for us to establish relations with women based on cooperation and common growth.

It is hard to break with a culture where we have leamed to be autonomous and controlling, a culture which has robbed men of a language for intimate matters. This language has to be developed. Through new stories of a responsible masculinity we will create that responsible masculinity. We must establish a new male ethic, based on two concepts: responsibility and caring.

3. Responsibility for society

In many countries, there is today a great commitment to conserving nature. This commitment may often seem paradoxical, because what happens in nature is just a consequence of what goes on in society. A violent society must necessarily also create a violent reaction to nature.

Therefore, men must cease to turn their backs on violence. We must acknowledge it, interfère, interrupt and talk about the irresponsible nature of domestic violence. We must create a movement from self-interest to common interest, from taking to giving, from 'T' to "we". We have a responsibihty to interfère if we encounter private violence in the next flat. The family is not sacred, it is a frail construction in need of help. The M%ite Ribbon campaign is an initiative which is aimed specifically at acknowledging and speaking out loud about the culture of violence - in order to change it.

But the work against a culture of violence also involves political work to change some of the most destructive arenas in our culture. The area is too vast to go into here, but it is clear that today's business trend to squeeze the maximum performance out of employees nurtures and creates violence. The struggle for refornis in working hours must be basic to creating opportunities for fathers to spend more time with their families - longer leaves of absence in connection with births, special quotas for fathers and shorter work days for fathers with small children will be the beginning of such a change. In addition, we are calling on politicians to concentrate their attention on the private instead of the public violence. In thoughts as well as in action.

And lastly, since we are in Strasbourg, where the French-Lithuanian philosopher Emmanuel Levinas started his career, we would like to pose the question of whether it is possible to create a new masculine ethic inspired by Levinas' theory of ethics. Is it possible to find a masculinity based on devotion, humility, vulnerability and openness to one another, where men will enter what we will call the third birth, where from a state of narcissism, they are reborn into a state of living for others through responsibility and caring?


In this article we should like to concentrate on the work against domestic violence, as an example of and a proposal for action in ail European countries.

The reality of violence against women

Our knowledge about the amount of violence against women is slight. First of all, it is very difficult to enter the room of domestic violence - it is hidden, silenced and alraost non-existent in the political and social debate. Secondly, little rese-arch is done on domestic violence. In Norway we have had a research programme, funded by the Norwegian Research Council, on violence against women and sexual abuse of women and children. After ten years we are now starting to know something about the mechanisms of violence, the relationship between power and powerlessness in this area. We have learned to listen to the voices of both the offender and the victim of the violence and we have started to build a policy out of this knowledge.

But still, we do not know very much about the extent of domestic violence. What researchers and other people working in this field have done is to make a qualified guess based on the numbers we know about: the number of children brought into hospitals because of sexual abuse (ten years ago this diagnosis almost didn't exist), the number of women staying in shelters for battered women, the number of men seeking help for a problem with violent behaviour, the number of women contacting police stations because of sexual abuse. We therefère estimate that in Norway, one hundred thousand men have a problem with violence, which equals six percent of the male population above the age of eighteen. Six thousand women are sexually abused every year and very few men are convicted for crimes of this nature. Around five percent of the children are exposed to sexual abuse, most of them girls. As many as twenty percent of women in the workplace have experienced sexual harassment.

'Mis is the reality of violence against women in Norway, and we do not think that it is any less in other European countries. Ibe issue is, however, not the amount of violence, because domestic violence is by any standard far too frequent. We raust keep our focus clear, and that is to work against the thinking which exists within masculinity: that it is acceptable to use violence against women.

What has been done?

Twenty years ago, the focus of domestic violence was on battered women. 'Me policy of the women's movement and of the govemment was to create shelters for battered women. 'Mese shelters were and are an important "room. of their own" which creates safety and help. In the last seven years the focus has included men. The problem which was raised was: if nothing is done with the men, the violence will never stop! Out of pressure from both men and women, the Norwegian Department for Children and Family Affairs funded the first centre for battering men - Alternative to Violence (ATV). From the beginning, ATV has been a total success, with a long waiting list. The two psychologists working in the centre have developed new methods for working with men and violence - with both individual and group therapy. So far, the results have been very good, with reports that more than 80 percent of the men have never used violence after finishing the therapy. As a result of ATV's existence, several psychologists (men) around the country have started focusing specifically on men and violence and offering therapy for men with violent behaviour. This is very new, since the dominant theory within traditional family therapy has a lot of resistance against domestic violence. We think that it is necessary to focus particularly on men and violence within family therapy to be able to deal with it, or even to be able to see it.

But still, the very few therapists working with men and violence are not enough compared to the amount of violence. Our conclusion is that the existence of specific centres, like ATV, should be part of the effort against domestic violence in every European country. Centres like this have two specific advantages. Firstly, the only practical solution to the problem is to offer therapy for violent men. Shelters for battered women soften the pain, but do not fight its cause. Secondly, by treating men we are showing that we think men are not all bad. We are working with the causes of violence and this shows that men can change violent behaviour. This is the ethical dimension of centres like ATV.

Another important activity in Norway is the White Ribbon Campaign: Men against violence against women. This is a campaign by men, for men and about men. We started the campaign in 1993 and we organise events every year the day befère and on Fathers' Day (which is the second weekend in November). The White Ribbon Campaign started originally in Canada in 1991, when a handful of men decided they had a responsibility to urge men to speak out against violence against women. 'Mey decided that wearing a white ribbon in the week leading up to the second anniversary of the massacre of 14 women at the University of Montreal engineering school would be a symbol of men's opposition to men's violence against women. The campaign was a big success, where thousands of men across Canada wore a white ribbon. Since then, the Canadians have organised white ribbon campaigns every year, and it has spread to Australia, the US and Norway. Wearing a white ribbon is a personal pledge never to commit condone nor remain silent about violence against women. Our objective is to stimulate reflections and discussions that lead to personal and collective action among men. Violence against women is a topic which has never been spoken about among men. We want this to change -and we think that speaking about violence against women is one important step towards ending it. The advantage of the white ribbon is that it is immediately visible, which often raises people's curiosity - and the discussion is begun.

'Me campaign is working within schools, unions, workplaces, the military, with politicians, in the media. The work is done by volunteers only, except for a very successfül cooperation in 1995 with the Norwegian organisers (Norsk FolkehJe1p) of the Madrid Declaration: Say no to violence against women. We prepare different events for Fathers' Day each year, because we want to underline the responsibility of the fathers. Domestic violence is a family pain with consequences for the whole family. We focus on the need for fathers, husbands and lovers to take responsibility and show empathy instead of violence. To focus on Fathers' Day also gives the advantage of helping to create real alternatives. Because we have to help boys leam from birth that to be real men you do not have to be violent and that real men are caregivers. We do not think that men are naturally violent and we do not think that men are bad. We are not male bashers. At the same time, we do think that many men have learned to express their anger or insecurity through violence. Many men have come to believe that violence against a woman, child or another man is an acceptable way to control another person. By remaining silent about the violence, we allow other men to, poison our environments. We also allow the picture of men as dangerous to stay alive. We are working to change this picture because we care about what happens in the lives of men. The White Ribbon Carapaign is one possible way to raise consciousness among men of violence against women - and the colour of the campaign fits perfectly into the colour of the march against violence in Belgium. It would also be wonderful if the campaign, which already exists in several countries, were to spread to be a huge campaign among men against violence against women.

Without interest from, and work by, men in this area we think it will be very difficult to stop the violence. Domestic violence is a problem within existing masculinity and it is we, as men, who have to stop it.

Report on Sub-theme 2 b

by Dr Scilla ELWORTHY (United Kingdom)

Patriarchy, war and violence

Most people are, more or less, peaceful; our impulse is to help rather than to hurt. But we are currently in and of a culture of violence. This culture of violence is nourished by our acceptance that it constitutes the "real world"; we tend to feel that, in the last resort, world crises must be dealt with by such "realist" means as war, economic control, carrot and stick diplomacy, incarceration and harsh measures of "Law and order".

The rich are doing very well. They reject the idea that their prosperity is founded on the indigence of others. No, they say, on the contrary: they create wealth which then trickles down to others. It is true that it could; the powerful control the mechanisms by which it might do so. But almost everywhere we choose not to. Consequently, the politically powerless in "Iess developed" countries have remained poor, while many G7 nations have recently tended to withdraw support and privileges for the poorer classes (and nations; aid is almost everywhere reduced) and taxes rediftributing income have mostly been brought to an end.

These social and economic factors contribute to tension; in frustration and desperation and to the scarcity or cost of essential goods. Those most affected are driven by destitution or oppression to try to change their lot by violence. But war leads to further ills - to famine, disease and homelessness. On the smaller scale, it is clear that much violent crime is in part an expression of desperation at perpetual poverty and chronic deprivation. The knowledge that there is enormous wealth and power for some is a constant exacerbation for those lacking them; the bush wars of Africa, the Moscow Mafia, the underworld of Rio have all been affected by it. And who can say when, in an access of crazed fury, some frustrated group or minor power will unleash a nuclear attack?

We have been moving with excessive speed during this century. The convulsions of great wars, the rise and fall of empires and ideologies, the technological transformations, the losses of faith - all these things have meant that in my lifetime things have changed more than in the last four or five hundred years. We no longer know who or where we are; we are foreigners, estranged from. a world we once understood and felt part of, made to feel alien, so that even those who live in the rich countries of Europe live in a society which no longer has any rules. Indeed, in some ways it scarcely is a society; it's a free-for-all in which the chief value is success. This scrabble for achievement is lonely, it has neither creed nor convention; rivalries have replaced friendships. The yuppie is as alienated as the unemployed mugger; the well-educated top manager of a great conglomerate who sanctions policies that deal indirect death to Latin American peasants is as estranged from the world as the illiterate drugs dealer in Lagos or Liverpool: the effects of what they do mean nothing to them.

The lives of the poor have, in vast numbers throughout the world, been thrown into confusion. They have been shot and hounded and persecuted; they have nothing. They have lost their homes, their families, their work. They have been tortured. They live in wretched slums, bidonvilles, favelas, inner cities. Their children are murdered or murder each other. Women who live near superpower military bases are subject to sexual abuse, violence and exploitation.'

What is the connection with patriarchy?

Ask first, who is in charge in our world? While it is true that women are now elected in greater numbers to national asserablies, they still rarely constitute more than one third, understood as a critical mass for changing process as well as content in legislative decisionmaking. Moving to the "sharp end" of politics, namely decision-making on weapons of mass destruction, we find that it is 99% in male hands. For the past 15 years, I have interviewed those who design, commission, build, pay for and strategise on nuclear weapons in all the nuclear states including Russia and China; and in 1988 published a Who's Who' listing 650 biographies of those in these key positions worldwide - of these, only 5 were women. That figure is only marginally different now.

Ask next, what are the structures which influence our lives? The dominant ones are pyramids, where the person at the top wields power over those lower down. This is a masculine format. A more feminine one would be a network, a horizontal consultative structure where power is shared.

Ask third, about the nature of power itself The notion of power which has prevailed in world politics for several thousand years is power understood as physical strength, domination, hierarchy, authority, rule - and ultimately military force. It emanates from outside a person, from armies or weapons or constituencies or god. We may call this kind of power domination power. This is essentially a question of having power over something or somebody else.

The great danger for the world is that the alienated culture of violence that already exists will replicate itself endlessly. Its victims who have suffored one sort or another of intense deprivation and are frantically acting out their anguish may similarly affect their families and friends, passing on the pain from one generation to another and so contributing further to that desperation and hopelessness which has so hurt and impaired them.

To halt this, it is not useful to tinker with symptoms; we must examine causes. What are the causes of violence? What is the psychological basis of the violence, the mind or mind-sets, for there are many, that motivate the violence? This is surely a task for what might be termed public mental health of the most crucial sort. This is what we are concerned with, and what I shall come to in a moment, but first I wish to engage your imaginations.


Lavins! foundations for the culture of peace

What would a culture of peace look like?

Such a question begs a host of other questions:

How will the "haves" share with the "have nots"?

- How will there be enough for everyone - enough food, energy, education, jobs?

- How do ordinary citizens deal with ruthless dictators?

- What would an international order be like, in which co-operation displaces coercion as a means of resolving conflicts?

- How do we stop a Genghis Khan or a Hitler?

and so on.

Well, now please close your eyes.

Picture if you will cities, towns and villages with neither physical walls round them, nor layer upon layer of lethal invisible weapons, nor fierce immigration laws, nor protective trade barriers. In other words, open and UNFORTIFIED.

Picture an agriculture respectfül of earth's needs and cycles, a balanced eco-system, producing enough for everyone.

Picture a people who welcome strangers.

Picture a community where the vulnerable are protected, where the mentally and physically unusual are honoured, where every human being is treated with equal respect.

Picture organisations where the qualities valued are tenderness, good listening, inclusiveness, receptivity.

Picture a society where everything revolves around the sacred and is informed by the spirit -everything, including health, education, agriculture, trade, sport, business - and even politics!

Picture above all a playful people, who reckon children wise. A people who stop in their tracks and drop what they're doing in the presence of beauty. A people who revere the creative. A people who celebrate many festivals together. A people who dance.

This vision is fuelled not by my imagination, but by evidence that is emerging of societies which did in fact exist, albeit a very long time ago.9 These societies appear to have survived

See for example, Mary CONDREN, The Serpent and the Goddess: Women, Religion and Power in Celtic Ireland, San Francisco, Harper Collins, 1989; Michael DAMES, Silbury Treasure: the Great Goddess Rediscovered, London, Thames and Hudson, 1976; Riane EISLER The Chalice and the Made San Francisco, Harper and Row, 1987; Marija GIMBUTAS, The Goddesses and Gods of Old Europe 6500-3500 BC, London, Thames & Hudson, 1974, 1982; Robert Graves, The White Goddess, London, Faber and Faber, 1961; for many thousands of years, so the principles on which they were based are not utopian, they are realistic.

Now to brass tacks and nuts and bolts. How do we get from. here to there?

How DO we depart from long traditions of solving differences by fighting? How DO we overcome cynicism? How DO we transfonn the habits of violence?

It is becoming daily more widely recognised that before the planet can be healed and befère our societies can be healed, those trying to do the healing need themselves to become whole, healthy, aware and powerful.

To understand the full impact of this, and its implications, we first have to return briefly to the cradle.

Our treatment of children

The deepest need of a baby is for its essential self to be recognised. Since human babies are so dependent, this translates into having itg basic needs met. Its basic needs are for contact with a warm human heart, nourishment on demand and a constant other with whom to relatelo.

In our western societies babies, with few exceptions, spend most of their time separate from a human heart - put into a cot, a carrycot, a pushchair, a playpen. They are often left to cry. Their feeding times were, until recently, regulated by the clock or an adult timetable rather than by their own overwhelming needs. The result is that they can grow up feeling unrecognised and with a need to struggle and compete for love and sense of self. Thus they leam that life is about conflict between self and other.

This leads to the phenomenon of projection. In our minds we make a split between what we can tolerate about ourselves, the "good" and what we find distasteful or "bad", which is pressed down into an unconscious area, which some people call our Shadow. We might hide away there all sorts of unacceptable tendencies - the inclination to steal, to lie, to be cruel -they are buried away from. our conscious sight where we think we can disown them. Because they are repressed, these tendencies, they have energy, they "mean" a lot to us. But we can't admit them. in ourselves so we "see" them outside ourselves, in other people. This is called projection. Another person (or group or state) has traits and characteristics which call forth strong feelings from me - I find them, infuriating, disgusting, heinous. That's a fairly good

Anneli S. RUFUS & Kristan LAWSON, Goddess Sites, Europe, New York, Harper Collins Publishers, 1990; Monica SJOO & Barbara MOR The Great Cosmic Mother.- Rediscovering the Religion of the Earth, New York, Harper Collins, 1991; Merlin STONE, When God was a Woman, New York: Dorset Press, 1976.

See, among others, John BOWLBY's work for the United Nations on materrial deprivation; Alice Miller 77ze Drama of Being a Child, Virago, 1987, Gloria STEINEM Revolution from Within, Corgi, 1993; Jean LIEDLOFF, The Continuum Concept, Penguin, Arkana, 1989 indicator that that person or people has some characteristic which is actually, very secretly, mine.

Our view of human nature

How we treat children depends in turn on what is our basic view of human nature. Do we operate from the belief that human beings are inherently aggressive, corapetitive, greedy and so on and that these qualities are fixed, are a "given" and cannot be changed - in other words, the original sin mentality? The consequence of this is to assume that these tendencies have to be controlled, that we have to fight for what we want or defend it, in case someone else takes it.

The alternative is to assume that human beings are fundamentally co-operative, sociable, loving and generous - what might be called the original virtue attitude. The understanding here may be that unjust, cruel, aggressive acts are the result of the perpetrator having been treated previously in that way and that such tendencies are transformable.

Our attitude to the world

The philosophy of "Realism" which has prdvailed in national and world politics for 400 years or so is based on the existence of the nation state and the system of international power politics built upon it. Political communities develop separate interests, which their leaders represent and pursue. Clashes between these interests are bound to occur. In these clashes, it is the state with the greater power which will prevail. Since military force is ultimately the decisive form of power in conflict, the use or threat of force underlies the relations between states. The inevitable consequence of realist thinking is war. If conflicts are settled without the use of force, it simply indicates that both sides recognise from the distribution of power who will win. Even when power is not an overt element in conflicts, it lies beneath the surface and determines events. Consequently, states are obliged to rely on power to protect their interests. Conflicts are tests of power.

It is seen as the prime duty of political leaders to recognise these realities. What happens, therefère, is that each state or alliance sees its security as if "from within" and seeks to protect "our" interests and values from what is outside. Power seen this way rests on the willingness to use force."

This set of attitudes, which assumes that the others out there Ç'them") are vicious and will do us" harm unless we prevent or stop them, goes right back to the idea of original sin and to the treatment of children as if they were aggressive, greedy, violent and selfish. If this is human nature, then man is likely to want to take what his neighbour has got, by force if necessary. If "they" are like that, then "we" need to defend ourselves. (Of course, what happens then is that "they" see "us" anned to the teeth, busy making new weapons, so they feel threatened and start doing the same thing, and on and on it goes - in the spiral of the arins race.)

See The Missing Defence Debate, Current Decisions Report No 6, Oxford Research Group, 1991, PP 9-10

At the heart of this way of behaving is the process of projection, described above. It's not "we" who are aggressive, greedy, violent and selfish - it's "them". We therefère need to defend ourselves against them and have more power than them. Our present military leaders all believe that we must defend ourselves against enemies "out there". Things are seen from the point of view of particular governments; as if "from. within". Security, which tends to be seen largely in military terins, means the protection of "our" interests or values from what is outside.

The manner in which most international relations are conducted is therefère based on fear. The entire doctrine of nuclear deterrence is based on fear. My security, as a Chinese general once said to me, is based on your insecurity. This is consequent upon a hostile approach -we count weapons, we assess strength, we send spies out to discover enemy secrets, we compete to have the newest, cleverest weapons. We try to stop others getting the power we've got and call it non-proliferation. We try to control trade in missile materials and knowhow.

We are quite capable of adopting instead a collaborative approach - it would mean dealing with people, developing trust, finding common ground, building confidence. This approach includes conflict prevention, co-operative security and finding collaborative global solutions to problems such as trade in amis. It is %vhat the best of tough leaders do. It's difficult, challenging work. It requires the creation of an atmosphere in which negotiators can meet as people. It requires time. It requires being willing to be rejected, to not look good. It requires flexibility and patience and savvy and wisdom.

The three points above can be suramarised in a matrix:

Treatment of children View of human nature Attitude to the world
ORIGINAL VIRTUE Confidence building
Conflict prevention
Co-operative security
Collaborative solutions

Most children in the western world are brought up with a mixture of the treatment on the left, but with the emphasis on the first five. Children in other societies, where the emphasis is on the second five and children are kept in close proximity to the human body for at least their first two years show a natural tendency to co-operate, to share and to contribute to the common good.

Different notions of Power

Earlier I referred to the notion of power which has prevaüed in world politics for several thousand years, namely power understood as physical strength, domination, hierarchy, authority, rule - and ultimately military force. There is of course another kind of power, essentially a question of power with others. It is the power to create, to be instead of to do. It is power with others, which leads to co-operation rather than competition. It takes as its starting point a sense of interconnectedness with other human beings and the earth, and thus implies responsibility for them. It is available to men just as it is to women. I shall call it inner power

The problem is that domination power has been in the ascendant in our world for many centuries. It is a drive which makes people compete for jobs, money, goods, security and love. It drives nations to struggle for superiority, to build or buy weapons, for such destructive power that other nations are intimidated. Nations use their domination power (economic or military) to extract goods from other, less powerful nations at unfair prices, to grab territory or simply to ensure the continued supply of resources considered vital for the standard of living of their people. Thus nations of the North get richer and consumer more resources while nations of the South get deeper into debt. Domination power has brought some benefits, but the extent to which it has been prevalent has led to an irabalance of such proportions that the survival of the planet is at stake. The challenge is to discover (or rediscover) what this other power is like, what it consists of, how it can be developed and how it can be used.

The key difference between inner power and domination power is where they come from, what their sources are and what their direction is. Domination power comes from outside, from a sky god, from heaven, from weapons, from a straining outstretched arm. Its movement is outwards. Inner power is receptive and lies in the interior - the spirit, the psyche, the body. The healthier all these are, the stronger the power. Inner power comes from self-knowledge, from a groundedness in the body and from some form of spiritual underpinning. It is neither specifically male nor female but is a synthesis of the two. In My book I concentrate on ways in which we can rediscover and develop this power and use it.

During the past two thousand years, it is the qualities usually thought of as female which have been devalued. Qualities of insight, intuition, flexibility, feeling, compassion, communication and co-operation (which mil very recently were rated far lower than, for example, rationality, measurement, logos, competition and success) are only now beginning to be recognised by commerce, as well as by grassroots groups, as extrernely valuable. This is just the tip of the iceberg, the beginning of the revolution.

Two Proposals

Having examined why a change in the self and attitude needs to come about before violence can be lessened and the planet can be healed, let us look at what form that might take. One possibility might be a training course, combining experimental as well as theoretical work, individual as well as group experience. The time taken to complete the training should be flexible, to accommodate the needs of part time students, over a minimum of two years and a maximum perhaps of four. Training is suggested, as opposed simply to individual growth work (of which there is an ever-increasing amount being undertaken) because a training course ensures the inclusion of vital ingredients for the development of qualities essential to those acting as agents of change.

The training could include three modules: a taught course, individual research and experiential projects and personal development. The taught course could include principles of violent cultures, principles of peace cultures and principles of transformation. Individual research and experience could include a two month study of an example of transformation, another three-month period of personal experience of change and a final project to transform. a violent situation. Personal developinent would require the student to undertake at least a year's training and work with professionals in the areas of self-knowledge, power from the body and power from the spirit.

A second proposal' would be for a properly substantial parent support scheme, which could have two comporients: information and practical help.

A. Parent Information. It is now well established that infants and children thrive and become sociable on a certain type of care, which consists essentially of having their   basic needs met and that children become difficult and antisocial if they spend most of their time separate from a human heart. If parents everywhere could be made aware of this, they could save themselves endless pain and frustration, save their children heartbreak and save the costs of disciplining, reeducating and caring for victims of parental deprivation.

With little difficulty, the information could be widely made known to parents. As a minimum, a booklet accompanied by video and cassette could be produced, illustrating the benefits of the following: natural childbirth, home births, breast feeding, body contact with children, etc. Obviously, education materials would make clear the distinction between natural body contact and sexual abuse. This information campaign could be conducted through prenatal classes, post-natal care, in hospitals, schools and with the aid of midwives, district nurses and general practitioners. It could also be introduced as part of medical training.

B. Practical help. Two interesting factors coincide in western societies at the turn of the century: first, the population is aging and second, parents want more practical help

For a full discussion of these two proposals, see Eroding the Global Culture of Violence: Laying Foundations for the Culture of Peace by Adam CURLE and Scilla ELWORTHY, with the Life and Peace Institute, Uppsala, Sweden and the Centre for Peace, Non-violence and Human Rights, Osijek, Croatia with rearing children. There are extremely large numbers of people over 50, especially women who have no jobs and whose children are grown up, who have considerable experience in child rearing. The practical answer is to marry the two to set up a country-wide registered granny scheme. There are many ways in which this could work.

These two very simple proposals are but an indication of the possibilities which are already been tried out in small local schemes in various parts of the world. It is time now to use local experience and apply it boldly and nationally, for there is substantial change afoot, indicating an unprecedented readiness to think and act in a new way.

Changes are beginning to happen. There are over 100 new women in the House of Commons in London and in the French Parliament and these countries are starting to catch up with the Scandinavian example. The shooting gallery beneath Big Ben is to be turned into a creche. Major companies are running recruitment campaigns for women as middle managers, because women are seen to have communication and co-operation skills which many men lack. Workshops on female values are suddenly available in small towns as well as big chies in Britain. Women from developing nations have contributed a new text to the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, from a gender perspective. In Nicaragua, the work of a men's group provides hope that men can become part of the solution to ending violence. The British Institute of Management in a recent report stressed the importance of introducing what is called "feminine principles" into British industry. Twice as many new businesses are being set up by women as by men, and women say that the reason they are going into business is to have the freedom to do things their way.

These are yet small changes compared to the enormity of what has to happen. But if we are to have a planet for our grandchildren to live on, we have no choice any longer. We have to recognise the skills and qualities of the female in balance with those of the male. We have to recognise them, value thera and use them, if we as a species are to survive.

"In our first session, we realised that machismo impoverishes our lives ... In the second year we had the opportunity to work in rural Nicaragua and found that this sector of society was more receptive to the possibilities of change ... There are now 800 men working against violence." Violence against Women: a Block to Development, in One World Action (74 White Lion Street, London) Issue 8, Spring 1997.


Conclusions of the general rapporteur

by François DE SINGLY (France)

I. I should like to begin by recalling a scene that was shown on French television in early June 1997. It was during the general election carapaigns and the leader of the extreme right-wing party had come to support his daughter, who was standing as a local candidate. There he saw a left-wing party candidate, went up to her with his bodyguards and verbally and physically attacked her. On the screen, he looked as though he were enjoying himself immensely. He picked a fight with people who protested at his behaviour, then once again got angry and shouted "faggot" at someone - the ultimate insult for him, meaning "you're not a man, even if you look like one". End of scene.

The episode deserves comment in this seminar on "promoting equality: a common issue for men and women". It is no coincidence that the party leader who is calling for the abolition of the 1970 law in France recognising parental authority and for the re-establishment of paternal authority should express fierce homophobia. The two attitudes are consistent, they reflect an attachment to a traditional concept of masculinity - one of virility based on power over women, who are regarded as weak heings, and on the legitimacy of physical violence as an exaltation of strength.

During this seminar we condemned this social construct of the "male", masked by the evidence of natural differences, and observed how virility - a symbol of masculinity - operates on two related levels:

- in opposition to the world of women;

- in opposition to the world of men who are not considered "real" men.

Michael Kimmel has pointed out how, all too often, men define themselves as such by inventing another contrasting group or category, namely homosexuals, thereby reassuring themselves that they deserve to belong to the group or category of "real men".

During childhood and adolescence, boys are haunted by the fear of being called "sissy" or "poof'. This is to some extent reassuring; it is a sign that masculinity is fragile and results from a long socialisation process - and hence an indication that men are not completely convinced by, or fit into, these rigid categories. In public and especially in the presence of other men, they are governed. by this "masculine" definition of themselves. But underneath it all they are not quite so sure; they are, to some extent, ready to be defined differently.

In a survey conducted in France, men were asked what qualities they believed to be most important in a man (Nouvel Observateur opinion poll, May 1991). Honesty and will-power came first, while 37% chose affection and 10% virility. In another survey, participants were asked to state the qualities of a "good mother" and a "good father". In the latter case, 1%willingness to spend time wîth the family" obtained 40% of votes; "authority" received only 10%. These are not that the world has changed, but that it can change.

I think that all participants, male and female, share this belief. This does not mean that obstacles should be underestimated or ignored. Equality is a lengthy process.

II. Before summing up the recommendations made in the introductory papers, the four reports and the very informative discussions, I would like to recapitulate some important points.

The main question is what benefit men could derive from change - in other words, what they stand to gain by taking an interest in the issue of equality between women and men.

As one participant asked, "why are the men here interested in promoting equality?"

There were few personal responses, but some answers to this question are available from research. Men become involved in the issue in several ways:

either with refèrence to particular women they know, eg their mother, sister or girlfriend - the women in their life;

-or in times of crisis when their lives are disturbed, eg divorce or redundancy;

or when they have children and are trying to become "good fathers".

These are times which prompt men to be inore sensitive to the question of masculinity and in the way in which they or others behave as men. There remains the question of what they stand to gain if they change - a difficult question since, as has been pointed out on several occasions, men do have somethinz to lose by changing. After all, we could not speak of male domination if men gained nothing from the inequality that is tipped in their favour. Yet men also have.something to gain by changing. Many firraly believe this.

In the final reckoning, what would men gain and lose in a situation of equality? This is a crucial question, since the kind of answer chosen determines the kind of solutions envisaged and the form of co-operation that could be established with men. Several answers, both theoretical and practical, exist; one seemed to take priority at the seminar, disregarding certain differences in how it was expressed.

To understand it, let us look at the theory on which games are based. In zero-sum Rames, one player necessarily loses what another wins. The theories of domination - of class or gender - can be considered from. this perspective. The male group exploits another group, ie the female group. Alberto Godenzi states that inequality is based on "a relation in which one or more groups exploit or expropriate another or other groups... the advantage that one group enjoys depends inextricably on the disadvantage that another suffers." (Jackman quoted by Godenzi). The dominant group can win by using various strategies, which may or may not be violent. Love and affection can be regarded as clever tools used by the dominant to make the domînated appreciate serving their superiors. Symbolic violence serves as much as physical violence to maintain inequalities. The subordinate group must be wary of the qtvelvet" tactics used by the dominant. What counts is the struggle of the domînated, who have an objective interest in rebelling. From this standpoint, one of the best ways of helping women is to denounce inequalities on the one hand and the forms, velvet or otherwise, taken by domination (love as well as violence) on the other hand. Every effort must also be made to ensure that women have enough resources - material and symbolic - and power to be "free", "equal" individuals on the same level as men.

The majority of participants in the seminar did not endorse this model. Support was stronger for a "non-zero-sum" Rame in which the benefits that women win will allow men, in both the short and long term, to win as well (even if they lose certain advantages). Equality is therefère a worthwhile aim for men too. As Bengt Westerberg said at the beginning of the proceedings, equality enables everyone, male and female, to live a fuller life.

In non-zero-sum games, players need to co-operate in order to win. The model underlying the non-zero-sum game of co-operation between women and men with a view to achieving equality is as follows. Firstly, women have masculine sides to their identity and men have feminine sides - in the former they are hidden and masked, while in the latter they are repressed. Secondly, equality provides the opportunity to break away from the social repression that affects both sexes.

Eva Moberg expresses it very well: "men can just as easily develop their so-called feminine side as women can develop their so-called masculine side - which, obviously, in both cases, are actually their human sides". Walter Hollstein also holds this view; he notes that "men are reintegrating their feminine side and developing feelings, sensuality, passivity, vulnerability and the capacity to ask for help. Men are striving for a wider repertoire of emotions and human possibilities, but still remain male".

Perhaps it is not as easy as all that for women and men. As we saw at the beginning, there is the fear of being judged by others: for men to adn-ùt to a "feminine" side is perhaps to risk not being considered a "real" man?

The theory that men have, or can have, feminine sides and that women have, or can have, masculine sides involves a kind of paradox. To become oneself, to be fully human, women and men must recognise otherness in themselves - they must accept in themselves the qualities of the other group. As a male psychologist stated, there is a huge feminine reservoir in men.

Women and men therefère have a similar task - to recognise in themselves the qualities socially regarded as specific to the other sex. Let us look at some of Eva Moberg's helpful comments in this connection. She points out that some women "are alpine ski champions, ... orchestra conductors, ministers of state and elite chess players, while still being women"; and goes on to ask: "why on earth should men be unable to change ... why should they be unable to unfold their capacity for empathy, sensitivity, patience and intimacy? To remove their armour? "

These comments show that while men and women need to change, they must do so in different ways. Women need to add to their feminine qualities, to their "interiority", the qualities traditionally designated as male. Men need to remove - at least provisionally - their armour and their "exteriority" in order to reach an interiority hidden within them.

It is possible for men to do this, but there is a very specific resistance to it owing to fear of the void, as identified by Nfichael Kimmel. Casting off male habits and the most masculine and virile aspects of maleness is all very well, but what if underneath it all there is nothing but emptiness? Walter Hollstein also used this image of the void, which results from the abandoning of inner values and creates the energy to overinvest in work and the power struggles that engender violence.

Ways of dispelling this fear must be proposed (we shall return to this in the recommendations). One solution would be to bring up boys in such a way that they can learn to have and express "inner values" (while at the saine time bringing up girls to have and express "outer values"). Men could express themselves in men's groups, in which each can see that lie possesses this interiority and feelings while by no means losing his identity as a result.

After the process of changing and reducing inequalities, all individuals - male and female -can finally be themselves, which is the aim of our western societies. Gradually, social labels should also change; "exteriority" and "interiority" should no longer be automatically labelled "male" and "female". These may be practical designations but they can be dangerous, because they reflect male domination. Jorgen Lorentzen and Per Are Lokke are aware of this and stress the necessary distinction between expressing feelings and expressing femininity. There has long been a link between these two terms, but this link must be broken: men can and must find their own ways of expressing their feelings and emotions, just as women can and must create their own ways of exercising power in the public sphere. Equality means reconciling dualities.

Men and women can therefère co-operate in order to live more funy. This will have significant repercussions: the use of each individual's full potential should result in the development of a more harmonious society.

Scilla Elworthy offers us such a vision - one of a peaceful, open, tolerant, playful world, in which everyone dances because they are happy and well-adjusted.

A close reading of "Patriarchy, war and violence" shows that the culture of peace is not based on a model strictly equivalent to the one just outlined. Indeed, there is a conflict between two visions of the world and two ways of governing: exterior, vertical power, which is typical of the dominant, ie men, and internal, horizontal power, which tends to be preferred by women. For Scilla Elworthy, it is clear that peace will only come from a defeat of the external power and a renaissance thanks to internal power. Here there is no question of combining masculine and feminine sides, as in the preceding model; there is a rejection of verticality, dissuasion and intimidation. This model does not integrate but excludes; it is based on the premise that co-operation and confidence are incompatible with threats and punishment.

In this concept of the gaine, the aim is above all the way in which the gaine is played. One group of players (women) must impose on the other group (men) a way of being which undermines men's preferred approach, ie vertical power. It is a gaine in which non-violence must prevail over violence without employing the means used by the dominant group in order to win.

This interesting theory deserves to be explored in more depth. Disagreements as to the concept of male domination do not preclude aVeement on recommendations. The different theories have at least two things in common, which are essential for action to be taken:

a) the recognition of "female" values - values of interiority - for all, including men. The question left unanswered is that of the role left to male or exterior values;

b) the reiection of violence as a legitimate fonn of expression with regard to all humans - women, children and men alike.

These two points are important. They show that equality between women and men cannot be achieved by conforming to the male model of the world.

III. What recommendations can we make to promote equality and at the same time actively involve men?

1.Develop, research on how masculinity is constructed.

1.1 With emphasis on relationships between men, especially during childhood and adolescence.

1.2 With emphasis on pluralism - on the ways in which men express their masculinity. Issues relating to homosexuality must therefore be included.Stereotypes which attribute specifically "male" characteristics to all men should be avoided.

1.3 With emphasis on European diversity. Even if male domination is the rule in all countries, it does not always take the same forms. Approaches to promote equality may vary.

1.4 With emphasis on the ways and means whereby violence against women is practised.

1.5 With the creation of a European observatory on violence against women.

1.6 With the production of national statistics on violence.

2. Organise meetings and seminars at which men and women together discuss and develop a post-patriarchal vision of the future.

2.1 These meetings, which should be attended by representatives of NGOs, associations, universities and governments, should take the forin of specific groups focusing on one field: childcare, the media, trade, social security, international relations, defense and so on. Each of these groups must design the post-patriarchal society.

2.2 These meetings should analyse how we do things just as much as what we do. Changes in how we function can also be made - eg in our willingness to listen during meetings and to stress other, less vertical forms of organisation.

3. Develoiv and suyport new ways of bringing up boys.

3.1 For a non-violent education, an education that brings up boys to be men who do not use violence but are able to express themselves in other ways.
For a non-stereotyped education. Role-fflays could be promoted as an interesting way for boys and girls to discover the way in which the opposite sex functions.

3.2 More male instructors and teachers should be provided for in creches and schools.

4. Combat acts of violence by launching measures at two levels.

4.1 Unceasing condemnation of violence, especially male violence and the culture of violence in our societies. This condemnation must be established in and reflected by legislation. Violence must be condemned - it is a crime and its perpetrators must be punished.

4.2 Treatment of violent men: therapies should be developed for violent men, eg men's groups.

5. Aid facilities for the victims of violence, especially battered women, should be reinforced.

These are of two kinds:

5.1 Immediate aid in centres, hostels, counselling services, medical care services, etc.

5.2 Suipport for these women so that they can sever relations with a violent man and break the bonds of dependency.

6. To encourage equality andfight inequality in all itsforms, awareness must be raised  among individuals and groups at several levels.

6.1 At the level of public opinion, with the help of the media.

Why not extend to Europe as a whole the ' white ribbon campaign, which is both a personal and public pledge to combat violence?

6.2 At the level of professionals: teachers, judges, police, social workers and so on.

6.3 At the level of national policies.

7. Increase male participation in domestic work, especially in bringing up children. The role of the father must be enhanced, not in the traditional but in a modern fonn. Fathers must be closer to their children.

7.1 This requires action aimed, at company and administrative directors. They must recognise that men's commitment to, their role of father is a positive quality, at work as well as at home. It is the sign of a more complete man, someone who is more sensitive to and caring towards those around him.

7.2 This requires numerous publie measures, such as creating or increasing parental leave for fathers. Such leave is important if the man is to be an effective father when the mother is absent. A man must be alone in the house with his child or children without his companion or wife in order to establish a direct relationship with his child and carry out domestic tasks unsupervised.

7.3 This requires specific action so that the father, after separation, continues to play his role, not only as breadwinner but also in bringing up his children.

8. Ask the Council of Europe, more specifically its Steering Committee for Equality between Women and Men:

8.1 To continue the work begun in combatinz violence against women by drawing up a convention on the subject. An international convention on combating violence against women drawn up by the Council of Europe would fill a legal loophole at international level and would be useful at national level.

A monitoring system should be set up to ensure that the convention is implemented.

In the closely related field of human rights protection, the Council of Europe could draw up a recommendation on combating trafficking in human beings - especially women - for sexual purposes. Fighting against this appropriation of women's bodies is one way to combat the patriarchy and men's right to consider themselves "owners" of women.

8.2 To consider studving fundamental issues relating to the promotion of equality, in particular the characteristics of male power in all its forms (as Alberto Godenzi and Scilla Elworthy expressed it). Who wields male power? What is its nature? How is it used? What are its alternatives? Economic power too must be borne in mind. This study could be carried out by a group  of experts and disseminated and discussed in the meraber states and by governments.

8.3 To co-ordinate the work carried out by the Council of Europe with that of associations or grassroots groups and international non-govemmental organisations which, as in the past, can play an important role in promoting equality between women and men.

The wealth of information in the introductory papers and reports, the high-quality organisation provided by the Section on Equality of the Council of Europe's Directorate of Human Rights and the way in which each participant contributed and was listened to have shown us that it is possible to build a shared world that respects difference and that equality and the sharing of tasks and responsibilities at all levels between men and women is a source of a high quality of life for individuals and the community.

Closing address

By Daniel TARSCHYS, Secretary General of the Couneil of Europe

If everyone else is grateful to the General Rapporteur, I am twice as grateful because I have the task of concluding a Seminar which I have not attended, which is always a rather risky undertaking, because you are less informed that everybody else. Through the General Rapporteur, and the very comprehensive report, I think I have a whiff of what you have been working on, what you have been saying during these two days. I have read some of the papers and look forward to reading the conclusions and the rest of the papers that I have not yet had a chance to see.

I should like to thank you very much for coming here and for contributing to this process. I'd like to explain what I mean by "process": the Council of Europe is a very complex system, where politicians and experts interact at different levels. Politicians also interact with other politicians. The Parliamentary Assembly influences the Committee of Ministers; the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities intervenes with governments, but both of these levels of political representatives imbibe and thrive on the wisdom of experts. We frequently organise seminars and colloquies with experts. These are very often mixed conferences where experts and politicians meet. Together, they bring out ideas and proposals formulated in a very fruitful exchange of information and which constitute a solid basis for recommendations put forward by this Organisation. Today again, experts and politicians come together in order to contribute to our understanding of the role of men in achieving equality between women and men.

The General Rapporteur has alluded to the fact that men and women, to a very large extent, inhabit separate worlds. There are small parts of our societies which are mainly dominated by men, others mainly by women. Unfortunately, the field of equality is one such area which is actually mainly dominated by women. This seminar has, I think, been a very important attempt to inject a bit of equality into the field of equality, to redress the irabalance existing in this field by focusing on men's roles in the balance of gender. I think this is a very much overdue and important task. This is a contribution which can stimulate and inspire further work within the Council of Europe.

It is not entirely the first event which focuses on men. I have just come back from Vienna, where the Ministers responsible for family policy held their 25th meeting. The Ministers in different areas in the Council of Europe meet periodically every second or third year. The Family Ministers happen to be the oldest such Conference. They have met 25 times since they started in the late 50s. This time, the focus in Vienna was on problems of adolescence, particularly linked to the fact that adolescence is now longer than it used to be, studies take longer and that, as an added complication, entry to the labour market is now more risky. There is considerable unemployment and youth unemployment which adds another complication, another dimension of uncertainty into the whole experience of adolescence, as if adolescence were not difficult enough without unemployment at the end of it.

The Ministers discussing this gave a lot of attention to the role of both parents in this process. Last time the Family Ministers met, in Helsinki two years ago, the emphasis was on the role of fathers in families. Again, there was the feeling among the Family Nfinisters that there is a need to focus on men. When they discussed adolescence yesterday, there was a very clear understanding that the role of both parents is absolutely vital for young people growing up. While in Amsterdam, at the same time, there is a discussion going on about govemment and budget deficits, the people in Vienna discussed parental deficits, the lack of communication between parents and children and particularly young people. There was an insight in Vienna that there is also a need to refocus family policy because small children, of course, take up a lot of attention, but there is a tendency to concentrate all family policy on small children and to, leave out the need for continued communication and contact between parents and adolescents. In both the discussions in Helsinki and in Vienna, the issue of men and men's roles in parenting and education were very much the focus of attention. This, I think, is very promising. It also signals that there is a receptive audience for the kind of issues that you have been discussing.

This Seminar, I think, can yield many results: you asked a very pertinent question, what next? What happens now? In my view, this Seminar can be inspiring in a number of different ways. First of all, we have another Nfinisterial Conference coming up in Istanbul later this year, a Conference of Ministers of Equality, where at least one topic will be very much related to the subject of this Seminar: it will deal specifically with men's roles. A second, very important input, could be into the work of the Steering Committee for equality in its consideration of the Convention on violence against women. I think this is a very exciting idea, which is now being developed in the Steering Committee, and a number of good arguments, I know, have been advanced here in favour of such a Convention. These will, I am quite sure, be taken into account in the work of the Steering Committee.

The Steering Committee, I have learned, is also involved in considering an instrument on trafficking in women, again an extremely important topic which I think will also be present at the Council of Europe Summit in October this year. This Summit will have a particular focus on individual security issues, among other issues such as drugs, corruption and so on. I think trafficking in women could be a topic for the Summit.

Another consequence, I hope, of this Seminar could be activities in the member States. I hope one could replicate this meeting at other levels, and I hope that the documents could be used in various kinds of national gatherings. Evidently, this is a topic which requires a much broader discussion than the one we have had here. It also requires discussion with people specifically involved with youth, with education and with a number of sub-areas which are very much related to the general concern. It is, in fact, rather difficult to think of any areas where it is not applicable, but I think at least you have made a very good start here, and I would like to conclude where I started by thanking you for your contributions, for the texts you have produced and for the discussions which will be reflected in the final report.





Ms Yllka HIDA, Directrice, Ministère de la Culture, de la Jeunesse et des Femmes, Direction

"La femme et la famille", TIRANA (a)

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Ms Ludmila BOJKOVA, Deputy Head of the Department of Human Rights, Ministry of Foreign

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Tel: (47) 22 24 25 64 Fax: (47) 22 24 95 21

Ms Helene AARSETH, Equal Status Division, Ministry of Children and Family, Akersgt 59, N

0 180 OSLO (a)

Tel: (47) 22 24 90 90 Fax: (47) 22 24 95 15


Mr Stanislaw TURBANSKI, Chancellery of the Prime Minister, Department for Family and

Women, Litewska Str 2/4, PL-00581 WARSAW (a)

Tel. (48) 22 69 47 597 Fax: (48) 22 628 2315



Mr Antonio Pedro PIRES, Gabinete do Alto Comissario para as Questoes da Promoçao da

Igualdade e da Familia, Praça dos Restauradores, Palàcio Foz, P-1200 LISBON (a)

Tel: (351) 3219515

Ms Dulce BAPTISTA, Comissao para a igualdade e para os direitos das mulheres, Av de

Republica, 32, P-1000 LISBON (f)

Tel: (351) 7936081/4 Fax: (351) 7937691


Mme Daniela SEMENESCU, Conseiller du Ministre, Ministère du Travail et de la Protection

Sociale de la Roumanie, Str Dem I. Dobrescu, Nr 2 B, 70119 Sector 1 BUCAREST (a/f)

Tel: (40) 1615 29 06 Fax: (40) 1 31102 02


Ms Tatiana SMIRNOVA, Counsellor, European Division, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the

Russian Federation, 9 Vozdvizhenka, MOSCOW (a)

Tel: Fax: (7 095) 290 08 65


Mme Laura BOLOGNA, Représentation Permanente de la République du Saint-Marin auprès du

Conseil de l'Europe, 10 rue Sainte Odile, F-67000 STRASBOURG

Tel: (33) 3 88 36 09 44 Fax: (33) 3 88 24 17 25


Ms Eva HAVELKOVÀ, Co-ordination Committee for Women"s Issues of the Slovak Republic,

Spitalska 4, 81643 BRATISLAVA (a)

Tel: (42) 17 338 2819 Fax: (42) 1 7 362 544


Mr Merlo ALEKSANDER, National Assembly of the Republic of Slovenia, Subiceva 4, SLO

1000 LJUBLJANA (a/f)

Tel: (386) 61 1250 351 Fax: (386) 61 12 52 336


Mme Julia TERCERO VALENTIN, Chef de Service, Relations européennes, Institut de la

Femme, Ministère des Affaires sociales, Almagro 36, E - 28010 MADRID (f)

Tel. (34) 1347 79 05/347 80 00 Fax (34) 1 347 80 76/319 9178



Ms Ingegerd SAHLSTRÖM, State Secretary, Ministry of Labour, S- 103 33 STOCKHOLM (a)

Tel: (46) 8 405 10 00 Fax: (46) 8 20 73 69

Mr Martin NILSSON, Member of Parliament, Swedish Parliament S-10012 STOCKHOLM (a)

Tel: (46) 8 786 4710 (46) 8 786 6136

Mr Roger MÖRTVIK, Political Advisor, Ministry of Labour, S-103 33 STOCKHOLM (a)

Tel: (46) 8 405 10 52 Fax: (46) 8 405 1300

Ms May Ann RAMSAY, Deputy Permanent Representative of Sweden to the Council of Europe,

67 allée de la Robertsau, F-67000 STRASBOURG (a)

Tel: (33) 3 88 35 30 86 Fax: (33) 3 88 36 01 83


Mme Chiara SIMONESCHI-CORTESI, Présidente de la Commission Fédérale pour les questions

féminines, Eigerplatz 5, CH-3003 BERNE (f)

Tel/Fax: (41) 91 941 25 34



Mr Nazif DZAFERI, Third Secretary at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Dame Gruev St 6, 9 1000


Tel: (389) 91 1103 33 Fax: (389) 91 1157 90


Ms Narinç ATAMAN, Director Gencral, Direction Générale du Statut et des Problèmes de la

Femme, ANKARA (a)

Tel: (90) 312 419 29 73/74 Fax: (90) 312 419 49 17

Mr Hasan Bulent KAHRAMAN, Bilkent University, GSTMF/GRA.TS.BL, TR-ANKARA

06533 (a)

Tel: (90) 312 467 16 13 Fax: (90) 312 467 16 13 E maü:

Ms Serpil SALAÇIN, Department of Forensic Medicine and Women's Studies Centre, Çukurova

University and Medical Faculty, TR-01330 ADANA (a)

Tel: (90) 322 338 6060 Fax: (90) 322 338 6572


Ms Nataliya SHAKURO, Head of Council of Europe Division, Ministry for Foreign Affairs, 1,

Mykhailivska Sqr., 252018 KYIV (a)

Tel: (380 44) 212 8516 Fax: (380 44) 226 3169






Ms Zinaida VALOVICH-IIRYHORYEVA, Deputy Chairperson of the Union of Women of Belarus, Dean of the Special Faculty on the Management of Social Technologies of the Belarusian State University . (a)

Tel: (375) 17 227 18 08 Fax: (375) 17 236 64 43






Mgr Michael Aidan COURTNEY, Envoyé Spécial du Saint-Siège auprès du Conseil de l'Europe,

2 rue le Nôtre, F-61000 STRASBOURG (a)

Tel: (33) 3 88 35 02 44 Fax: (33) 3 88 24 78 05

Madame Odile GANGHOFER, 16 rue des Pontonniers, F-67000 STRASBOURG M

Tel: (33) 03 88 35 02 44 Fax: (33) 03 88 24 78 05



M. François de SINGLY, Professeur de Sociologie à l'Université de la Sorbonne, 42 rue de Sèvres, F-75007 PARIS Tel: (33) 144 39 69 97


Mr Bengt WESTERBERG, Former Minister for Equality Between Women and Men,

Fryxellsgatan 4, S-114 25 STOCKHOLM (a)

Tel: (46) 8 20 35 96 Fax: (46) 8 20 35 96


Professor Alberto GODENZI, Head of Department of Social Studies, University of Fribourg,

Route des Bonnesfontaines 11, CH- 1700 FRIBOURG (a)

Tel: (41) 26 300 77 95/81 Fax: (41) 26 300 97 15 E-mail:


Ms Agnete ANDERSEN, Chair of the CDEG, Special Adviser, Ministry of Labour, Holmens

Kanal 20, DK-1060 COPENHAGEN K (a)

Tel: (45) 33 92 99 63 Fax: (45) 33 12 13 78

Ms Ludmila BOJKOVA, Deputy Head of the Department of Human Rights, Ministry of Foreign

Affairs, Alexandre Gendov 2, 1113 SOFIA (a)

Tel: (359) 2 70 42 94/714 43 2475 Fax: (359) 2 971 28 81

Mme Martine CHAUMONT, Collaboratrice, Cabinet du Ministre de l'Emploi et du Travail, 5 1 -

53 Belliardstraat, B-1040 BRUXELLES (f)

Tel: (32) 2 233 5004 Fax: (32) 2 230 1067

Mr Stanislaw TURBANSKI, Chancellery of the Prime Minister, Department for Family and

Women, Litewska Str 2/4, PL-00581 WARSAW (a)

Tel: (48) 22 69 47 597 Fax: (48) 22 628 2315

Dr Santiago URIOS MOLINER, Universidad Jaume I de Castellon, Campus de Riosec, E-12080


Tel: (34) 6 3602467 Fax: (34) 6 3516894


Professor Dr Walter HOLLSTEIN, Alsterweg 57a, D- 14167 BERLIN (a)

Tel: (49) 30 817 1914 Fax: (49) 30 83 02 216

Ms Eva MOBERG, Heleneborgsgatan 5A, S- 11731 STOCKHOLM (a)

Tel: (46) 8 84 99 89 1., Fax: (46) 8 84 95 70

Mr Jorgen LORENTZEN, Department of Comparative Literature, University of Oslo, Box 1013


Tel: (47) 22 85 76 38 Fax: (47) 22 85 7100

Mr Per Are LOKKE, Blylagvn 25, N-1450 NESODDEN (a)

Tel: (47) 66 91 54 88

Dr Scilla ELWORTHY, Oxford Research Group, 51 Plantation Road, GB-OXFORD OX2

6JE (a)

Tel: (44) 1865 242819 Fax: (44) 1865 794652



Mr Necmi ÇEKIN, Department of Forensic Medicine and Women's Studies Centre, Çukurova

University and Medical Faculty, TR-01330 ADANA (a)

Tel: (90) 322 338 6060 Fax: (90) 322 338 6572

Dr Peter ELLIS, 37 Prince of Wales Road, UK-LONDON NW5 3LJ (a)

Tel/Fax: (44) 17148 23 850

Mr Roger GUSTAFSSON, Co-ordinating Officer, Male Network for Men against Violence by

Men, c/o Rädda Barnen, S-10788 STOCKHOLM (a)

Tel: (46) 8 698 92 24 Fax: (46) 8 17 82 00

Mr Michael KIMMEL, National Organisation for Men against Sexism (NOMAS), Department

of Sociology, SUNY at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, NY- 11794 USA (a)

Tel/Fax: (1) 212 749 6369 E mail:

Mr Sven-Axel MANSSON, Department of Social Work, Sprangkullsgatan 23, S-41123


Tel. 46 31773 10 00, Fax. 0 19 46 31773 18 88

Mr Lasse REIJOMAA, Kashihakkio 2, FIN-02340 ESPOO (a)

Tel: (358) 9 802 5658 or (358) 3 788 5849-

Mr Julius SCHUSTER, Departinent of Physical Chemistry, University of Vienna, Währingerstr

42, A-1090, VIENNA (a)

Tel: (43) 131367 2552 Fax: (43) 1 310 45 97 E mail:

Dr Santiago URIOS MOLINER, Universidad Jaume I de Castellon, Campus de Riosec, E- 12080


Tel: (34) 6 3602467 Fax: (34) 6 3516894

M. Daniel WELZER-LANG, Equipe Simone, Université Toulouse le Mirail, D/12 Rue Agathoise,

F-31000 TOULOUSE (f)

Tel: (33) 5 61 63 88 48 Fax: (33) 5 6163 88 51




Mme Lydie ERR, 60 avenue Gaston DIDERICH, 1420 LUXEMBOURG (f)

Fax: (352) 45 39 09 Fax: (352) 45 39 09



Ms Ulla ARNHOLM, City Councillor in Kungälv, Bäckgatan 32, S-44232 KUNGÄLV,


Tel: (46) 303 12 346 Fax: (46) 303 19 035





Mme M. T. RIBEIRO, (Vice-Chair/Vice-Présidente) Cabinet d'appui à la Presse, Presidencia do Conselho de Ministros, Palàcio Foz, Praça dos Restauradores, P-1200 LISBONNE (f)

Tel: (351) 1346 9230 Fax: (351) 1 347 4392


Ms Emer KILCULLEN, Department of Foreign Affairs, 80 St Stephen's Green, DUBLIN 2(a)

Tel: (353) 14780822 Fax:(353)1 4785923










Ms Marianne ERIKSSON, European Parliament, 97 rue Belliard, B-1047 BRUSSELS (a)












Ms Ingeborg BREINES, UNESCO, 7 Place de Fontenoy, 75352 PARIS 07 SP (a/f)

Tel: (33) 145 68 12 12 Fax: (33) 145 68 55 57








Mr Ole VALEN, Storgata 32, N-0184 OSLO (a)

Tel: (47) 22 178700 Fax: (47) 22 178600


Ms Mary COLLINS, European Women's Lobby, 22 rue du Méridien, B-1210 BRUSSELS (a)

Tel: (32) 2 217 90 20 Fax: (32) 2 219 84 51


Ms Karin NORDMEYER, Zonta International, Birkenrain 26, D - 79271 St PETER (a)

Tel/Fax: (49) 7660 541




Mr Gunnar HAGMAN, Office of the Secretary General, International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, Case postale 372, CH-1211 GENEVE 19

Tel: (41) 22 730 42 22 Fax: (41) 22 733 03 95


Ms Elly PRADERVAND, Founding Director, Wornens World Summit Foundation, PO Box

2001, 1211 GENEVA 1 (a)

Tel: (41) 22 738 66 19 Fax: (41) 22 738 82 48




M. Régis BRILLAT, Head of Section, European Social Charter/Chef de Section de la Charte Sociale Européenne

Mr Leonard DAVIES, Secretary to the Committee of Ministers/Secrétaire du Comité des Ministres

Mme Agneta DERRIEN, Admùùstrator/Administratrice,Youth Directorate/Direction de la Jeunesse

Mr Erik FRIBERGH, Deputy Secretary to the European Commission of Human Rights/Adjoint au Secrétaire de la Commission européenne des Droits de l'Homme

Mr Hans Christian KRÜGER, Secretary to the European Commission of Human Rights/Secrétaire de la Commission européenne des Droits de l'Homme

Ms Daniela LUPUS-FLETCHER, European Commission of Human Rights/Commission européenne des Droits de l'Homme

Ms Gunilla MARKGREN, Member of the Council of Europe's Committee for Equalit)~ivision of Human Resources/Membre du Comité du Conseil de lEurope pour l'Egalité, Division des Ressources Humaines

Ms Agnieszka NACHILO, Secretariat of the Ad hoc Conirriittee on Equality of the sexes, Office of the Clerk of the Parliamentary Assembly/Secrétariat du Comité Ad Hoc sur légalite des sexes, Greffe de l'Assemblée Parlementaire

Ms Bridget O'LOUGHLIN, Member of the Council of Europe's Committee for Equalit)~ivision of Human Resources/Membre du Comité du Conseil de lEurope pour lEgalité, Division des Ressources Humaines

Ms Joanna REYNELL, European Commission on Human Rights/Commission européenne des Droits de l'Homme

Mr Horst SCHADE, Office of the Clerk of the Parliamentary Assembly/Greffe de l'Assemblée Parlementaire

M. Marc SCHEUER, Director responsible for Communications and information technologies/Directeur Délégué, Communication et Technologies de l'Information

M. Jean André TSIMARATOS, Director reponsible for the Publishing and Documentation service/Directeur Délégué, Service de l'Edition et de la Documentation

Ms Gaby TUBACH, Equality Adviser/Conseillère sur l'Egalité, Head of Division IV, Directorate of Legal Affairs, Chef de la Division IV, Direction des Affaires Juridiques


Mr George WALKER, Head of the Sports Division, Directorate of Education,Culture and Sport/Chef de la Division du Sport, Direction de l'Enseignement, de la Culture et du Sport



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