Date: October 4, 2011
Location: Augustana Chapel
Michael Kimmel is among the leading researchers and writers on men and masculinity in the world today. The author or editor of more than twenty volumes, his books include Changing Men: New Directions in Research on Men and Masculinity (1987), Men Confront Pornography (1990), The Politics of Manhood (1996), The Gender of Desire (2005) and The History of Men (2005). His documentary history, “Against the Tide: Pro-Feminist Men in the United States, 1776-1990” (Beacon, 1992), chronicled men who supported women’s equality since the founding of the country.
His book, Manhood in America: A Cultural History (1996) was hailed as the definitive work on the subject. Reviewers called the book “wide-ranging, level headed, human and deeply interesting,” “superb… thorough, impressive and fascinating.” One reviewer wrote that “Kimmel’s humane, pathbreaking study points the way toward a redefinition of manhood that combines strength with nurturing, personal accountability, compassion and egalitarianism” while another called it “the most wide-ranging, clear-sighted, accessible book available on the mixed fortunes of masculinity in the United States.” (A 10th anniversary edition was published by Oxford University Press.)
His most recent book, Guyland: The Perilous World Where Boys Become Men (2008) is a best-selling investigation of young people’s lives today, based on interviews with more than 400 young men, ages 16-26. Featured in major television and radio interviews, the books was widely reviewed and praised in all major media outlets. “If you’ve ever had a conversation with a teenage boy and wondered what on earth was going on…this book will serve you well.” And feminist icon Gloria Steinem said that “Michael Kimmel’s Guyland could save the humanity of many young men – and the sanity of their friends and parents.” Feature film rights were optioned to Dreamworks.
Kimmel is a Professor of Sociology at SUNY Stony Brook, and lives in Brooklyn, New York with his family.