Gender views underlie social ills, Oakley says

May 24, 2002

Popular views of the roles and relationships of men and women underlie many social problems, said Ann Oakley, director of the social science research unit at London University's Institute of Education.

Issues such as rising crime, disintegrating families and the abuse of the environment are connected through a culture that excludes women and alienates men from the full range of human experiences, Professor Oakley said in a lecture at the Brighton Festival yesterday.

"Feminism didn't fail," she said, "but its success was limited by a masculinist social order that now insists that men are the main victims of gender division. To solve the problems that face planet Earth today, we need to understand how gender fits in and connects apparently disparate social issues."

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