A great review from a conference delegate

The following review of The First National Conference for Men and Boys has been submitted by delegate Dan Bell.

Click here now to read feedback from other delegates or check out Dan’s review first…..

If ever I am unfortunate enough to find myself having to explain why men and boys do not live the lives of privilege in comparison to women that we are so often told they do, the phrase I return to is: The world is not flat.

What I mean by this is that the received wisdom that men and boys are inherently the advantaged sex is so deeply ingrained within our culture, that it often resists any amount of evidence to the contrary. Indeed, to suggest otherwise is to risk being denounced as a heretic.

The range of concerns raised at the First National Conference for Men and Boys confirmed just how false this common perception of universal male privilege is. The day was packed with sessions, each addressing a different and fundamental area of concern — from the shocking disparity in how much more is spent on healthcare and public services for women, to the widening education gap, to the on-going scandal of Britain’s family courts.

But the conference also offered the beginnings of a way forward. One of the huge difficulties in advancing the needs of men in any discussion of these issues, is the sense of being an isolated voice shouting truth into a hurricane of misinformation and dogma. It is easy to lose heart, or give in to anger, when you feel you are fighting a just cause without support.

It is also far too easy to shame men into silence, either for somehow being weak for acknowledging their vulnerability, or for being bullies because they are demanding their legitimate concerns be heard.

This is why men and women who care about what happens to boys and men in our society need to stay in touch with each other, form networks, share their experiences and support one another. This is the seed that has been planted by The Men’s Network.

It is just the beginning and there is still so much to be done, with different approaches needed for each issue – from the inspirational personal development ethos of abandofbrothers, to the stringent detail-driven campaigns for health funding by organisations such as CALM.

But if each area of work can feel part of a single movement, they will become more than the sum of their parts. If we calmly and firmly speak the truth in unison, eventually people will hear it.


Glen Poole is UK co-ordinator for International Men's Day, Director at the consultancy Helping Men and news editor of insideMAN magazine. Follow him on twitter @HelpingMen or find out more about his work at www.helpingmen.co.uk.

Posted in NEWS
5 comments on “A great review from a conference delegate
  1. […] Bell, Journalist (click here now to read a full report from […]

  2. Nigel says:

    How true Dan. I do like your analogy to flat earthers. It is frustrating finding simple facts dismissed in favour of tired stereotypes. Things that revive the energy to keep on on the face of ideology are indeed valuable.

  3. Tom Martin says:

    Nicely put.

    Unfortunately, the misinformation swirling round the world’s 900+ women’s/gender departments can not be overturned by calmly explaining things to the academics – as they are often the ones who invent and perpetuate the misinformation in the first place.

    Anyone interested in supporting my legal fighting fund campaign for my lawsuit against sexist indoctrination within women’s/gender studies and beyond, can go to sexismbusters dot org – and keep spreading the word throughout your networks about the new video on youtube, entitled Tom Martin suing LSE’s Gender Institute for teaching sexism.

    Thank you Dan!

  4. […] is starting in the capital. It is run by psychotherapist David Polak who was a delegate at the First National Conferene for Men and Boys hosted by The Men’s Network last […]

  5. […] For further detail and how to book CLICK HERE NOW. […]

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