Former Athletes Fight Male Violence

Posted: September 23, 2003 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Dominick Rubino

Jackson Katz and Don McPherson, two former professional football players, will be demanding a higher standard for men. In Becoming a Real Man, sponsored by the Women’s Studies Research and Resource Center, the activists will be holding two unique workshops on the Fairfax Campus to inform Mason men and women how to defeat violence and sexism in their own lives. The event is held tomorrow in Harris Theatre at 4:30 and 7 p.m.

Katz is a former football player who became the first man to earn a minor in women’s studies from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. After earning a master’s degree from Harvard Graduate School of Education, he concentrated on the social construction of violent masculinities through sports and the media. McPherson is a former National Football League quarterback now challenging men to take responsibility for their inappropriate behavior. One of the primary goals in this charge is to defeat the “boys will be boys” excuse that has opened a door for sexism and violence in the past. The workshops will cover a range of topics, including violence generated from masculine behavior, alcohol abuse, and sexual relations.

The two athletes will be acting as role models for the Mason community to provide a script for young male students to follow when dealing with their peers. The discussions will include lectures, written and oral exercises, and interactive discussion that will challenge men to take on typically female issues. For more information on the workshops visit the Jackson Katz web site.

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