Exposing Men examines how ideals of masculinity - courage, strength, self-confidence, and protectiveness - have long skewed our societal, and scientific, understanding of one of the pillars of male identity: reproductive health. Only in recent years, with public exposure of men's reproductive troubles, has the health of the male body been thrown into question - and along with it deeper masculine ideals. Whereas once men's sexual and reproductive abilities were the most taboo of topics, today sperm banks advertise their "product" in flashy ads and magazine articles trumpet male reproductive decline. Cynthia R. Daniels casts a gimlet eye on plummeting sperm counts, spiking male reproductive cancers, declining birth rates of boys and the growth of industries to "correct" male infertility in order to assess the true state of male health. What she finds is male reproductive systems damaged by toxins and war and proof that men's health, as much as women's, significantly affects the vitality of their offspring. Nevertheless, Daniels shows that men ignore blatant health risks as they struggle to live up to antiquated ideas of manliness. Deftly explaining how our perception of men and women's reproductive functions have informed society's broader assumptions about gender roles, Exposing Men is for anyone interested in confronting and addressing the ever-changing landscape of sexual inequalities.
- Publication Date:
- 07 / 08 / 2008