Men Understanding Health – Prof Steve Robertson (Qualitative Health Research Group Seminar, Durham University, 31 October)

Qualitative Health Research Group Seminar

‘Men Understanding Health’
Prof Steve Robertson, Leeds Metropolitan University
Wednesday 31 October, 12-2
Wolfson Research Institute, F009,
Queen’s Campus Durham University

Abstract: While research on lay perspectives of health now has a well-established history, specific empirical data on male lay perspectives of health and well-being are largely absent. Drawing on focus group data and in-depth interviews with 20 lay men (including sub-samples of gay men and disabled men), and seven health professionals, this discussion explores how the men conceptualized ‘health’ and the gendered nature of such conceptualizations. Specific emphasis is given to considering notions of ‘control’ an ‘release’, and the associated issues of ‘risk’ and ‘responsibility’, in the participants’ health narratives. A conceptual model for under-standing ‘masculinity’ and ‘health’ is presented.

Biography: Steve worked in the UK National Health Service for over twenty years as a nurse and health visitor, before commencing a career in research in 1999. He completed his PhD at Lancaster University in 2003 and has since been involved in a variety of research and evaluation projects. His main interests and publications are around social theories of masculinity and their application to aspects of health and illness but he has also worked on: masculinity and disability; the sociology of (male) bodies; fathers and fatherhood; men, masculinity and mental wellbeing; evaluating men’s health programmes, and men’s engagement (or not) with health services. His first book, Understanding Men & Health: Masculinities, Identity and WellBeing, was published by O.U. Press in Autumn 2007 and his second, edited text, Men, Masculinities & Health: Critical Perspectives, was published by Palgrave in Autumn 2009.

About Centre for Medical Humanities

Centre for Medical Humanities
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One Response to Men Understanding Health – Prof Steve Robertson (Qualitative Health Research Group Seminar, Durham University, 31 October)

  1. In the research reported here, the intention was to explore young people’s views of their social worlds and their experiences of their `communities’. However, methods like map drawing and photography could be used much more systematically in community development initiatives to elicit views from a range of community members. The visual element of the data helped considerably in highlighting these views when it was used as a prompt to get young people thinking about and discussing their neighbourhoods. It is important to try to understand whether young people have a sense of belonging in their neighbourhoods if we want to try to bring their perspectives into the policy debates around public health and community well-being. These data show clearly that they have views that they are well able to articulate about their social environments.

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