December 8, 2021


Only The Finest Women

New Barcelona centre teaches Spanish men to explore their masculinity | Stephen Burgen in Barcelona

It’s hard work retaining the macho graphic of the Spanish man. But support is at hand in the shape of Barcelona’s new Centre for Plural Masculinities, which presents men the chance to solid off the machista straitjacket.

“This isn’t a spot for guys to appear and beat by themselves up for staying poor guys,” says Laura Pérez, the Barcelona councillor for feminism and LGBTI, who has in general obligation for the venture.

“It’s a location to chat about sexuality, with no taboos, a spot to check out masculinity. It’s all to do with how boys are educated to be adult men. Adult men have to be heroes, they are not permitted to be worried, boys do not cry. This does not permit for the numerous distinctive versions of masculinity that are achievable.”

When the centre aims to confront misogyny and homophobia, the emphasis is on encouraging men to discover other techniques of staying, beyond standard job types. Spain, just after all, is the nation that gave us the word “machismo”.

While the centre’s personnel of 10 set up group and person discussions on the premises, potentially the organisation’s most vital perform will be the outreach get the job done it does.

By means of exhibitions and activities in museums, libraries and other cultural institutions it hopes to increase the debate about masculinity. It will also be lively in the city’s several sporting associations.

Pérez sees sport as currently being just one of the final places where gentlemen are not able to be open about their sexuality, a level borne out by the media notice specified to Josh Cavallo, the young Australian footballer who arrived out as homosexual last thirty day period.

The centre will also attempt to fill the void of dialogue about gender roles and identification in college by involving dad and mom and lecturers. Pérez suggests there is small sexual intercourse education and almost no dialogue of sexuality in the Catalan education system.

“We have taboos about chatting about sex but, at the very same time, we have obtain by way of the web to each and every form of sexual exercise,” she says. “The only entry young folks have to sexual intercourse schooling is by means of pornography and this is quite hazardous.”

Some of the programmes pre-date the centre and just one of the most prosperous and well-liked of them prepares fathers-to-be with discussions about fatherhood, childcare and sharing domestic chores.

A survey by the national stats institute demonstrates that Spanish males spend an average of 23 several hours for each 7 days on childcare and 11 on residence chores, in contrast with 38 and 20 hours respectively for females.

On gender issues, for some time Spain lagged at the rear of other European countries because of the legacy of Franco’s dictatorship, claims Viviana Waisman, president of Women’s Link Globally, a not-for-income organisation that makes use of the regulation to advance women’s rights.

“Increasingly, we see young Spanish guys and females being familiar with the have to have to break with gender stereotypes,” she claims, but adds that some of the country’s institutions lag at the rear of.

This was thrown into stark relief in 2018 with the so-termed la Manada [wolf pack] circumstance when a few judges acquitted five males of gang-raping an 18-12 months-aged woman at the operating of the bulls pageant in Pamplona on the grounds that the video clip the adult men recorded on their phones showed the female presenting no resistance. A single decide even reported they should only be observed guilty of thieving the victim’s mobile.“The situation marked a turning stage in Spain, specifically as Trump was in power, and when a person is so blatantly misogynist it helps people today to have an understanding of how legal guidelines and insurance policies are so anti-women of all ages,” says Waisman.

“Here was a young girl who was the victim of a crime and the judges’ aim was on her and not the defendants. She was currently being questioned to demonstrate her conduct despite the fact that she was the target. It broke the collective silence about how girls practical experience violence and discrimination in society.”

The sentence provoked a enormous outcry with tens of 1000’s of females and guys getting to the streets all in excess of Spain in protests that compelled the govt to introduce new laws on consent.

'I'm a footballer and I'm gay': A-League player Josh Cavallo talks about his sexuality  – video
‘I’m a footballer and I am gay’: A-League player Josh Cavallo talks about his sexuality – online video

Outdated ideas continue to be entrenched, on the other hand, and have found their champion in Vox, the much-proper bash that espouses conventional loved ones values and whose leader, Santiago Abascal, has a penchant for Putin-style photo ops on horseback and is a supporter of pursuits such as hunting and bullfighting. “The thoughts about how gals can be have highly developed a good deal. Not so much in the circumstance of guys,” suggests Pérez.

“Gender stereotypes impact us all,” says Waisman, who supports the Barcelona initiative. “If we only concentrate on gals staying feminists and combating for equality and really do not do the similar for males, we’re leaving out 50 % the inhabitants.”

Pérez agrees. “Barcelona has been selling feminist policies considering the fact that 2015, and it is significant we consolidate the topic of masculinity inside these,” she claims. “If not, it’s just the audio of 1 hand clapping.”