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Men at Risk: Men's Health, Illness and the (Un)Healthy Construction of Gender Identity

Ajwang' Warria


While men in South Africa are succumbing to the societal pressures and notions of manhood and masculinity, they are faced with health-related risks that have contributed to an increase in the mortality rate of young men. The need to be perceived and accepted as masculine further compromises men’s voluntary use of the available healthcare and social services. This is the rationale for seeking to understand men’s health needs and their realities and how these factors inform healthcare and social service provision and policy development initiatives that should be directed at men. Generating new ideologies around masculinities and men’s health creates possibilities where men can actively contribute to the production or the reframing of masculinity, and towards the healthy construction of gender identity and gender equality.


men; health; illness; gender identity

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