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Male attitudes shaped by their community

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The communities in which men live play a fundamental role in shaping their attitudes towards women and sex, researchers have found, reported SBS NEWS.

A two-year study conducted in poorer areas across Scotland looked at the influence of a person's surroundings on their approach to sexual health, including coercion and violence.

Researchers led by Glasgow Caledonian University's Dr Karen Lorimer spoke to 116 men and women aged 18-40, in what they believe to be the first study of its kind in the UK.

Using focus groups and interviews, they were asked about their experiences living and growing up in their community, and probed on their views towards men and women, their understanding of consent and their views and experiences of physical, sexual and verbal abuse.

Researchers were struck by the "undertone of simmering resentment towards women" in the men's responses, "particularly in relation to perceived 'appropriate' femininity, sexuality, and sex".

They concluded that tackling misogyny and sexism goes beyond the individual and needs to be approached from a community level.

Dr Lorimer said: "Within sexual health, we found looking narrowly at what individuals know is never going to solve sexual health issues and improve attitudes towards equality.

"What we found is that if you are a young man living in a community, where there is a norm for violence; where there is peer acceptance that you have sex with lots of women; where women are treated poorly; you will have limited opportunities to adopt more positive forms of masculinity that could help foster more equal relationships.


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Location: Europe
Location: Europe
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