Why men are struggling

David Gibney

Reeves' book is an attempt to set out the problems faced by boys and men in key domains -- education, work and family -- and possible strategies to improve outcomes for them. "We must help men adapt to the dramatic changes of recent decades," argues Reeves, "without asking them to stop being men."

Born in England, Reeves now lives in America where he is a Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution, a fairly nonpartisan think-tank based in Washington DC. Prior to this, Reeves worked as a special advisor to Nick Clegg, the one-time Liberal Democrat Deputy Prime Minister, when the party entered their ill-fated coalition with the Conservatives in 2010.

He has written on aspects of socio-economic inequality, social mobility, and the current state of health of the anglophone middle class. His most recent book turns to a subject that is gaining increasing, albeit unsustained, attention in media and social science circles -- the ways in which the rapid social and economic transformations of the past century have cast boys and men adrift.

Reeves acknowledges that this book brings him into stormy waters, articulating ideas that are, in many respects, countercultural: "I have been reluctant to write this book. I have lost count of the number of people who have advised against it." Of Boys and Men is to be commended for broaching an inexplicably contentious subject in a very balanced and carefully researched manner.

Full Text

More Headlines…