National and international epidemiological data show a general male disadvantage in health, and the dominant explanation for men’s poorer health status usually points to men’s belief and behaviours in relation to health and illness: men, it is suggested, disregard health and mismanage illness in order to fulfil social expectations around masculinity. The present research responds to a call for empirical studies that explore men’s health and illness practices not through biomedical or behavioural explanations, which tend to homogenize and oversimplify men’s experiences, rather with a critical approach that would allow to go beyond the idea that “masculinity is dangerous to men’s health.” Masculinity is here intended not as a fixed, universal, biological trait, but rather as a configuration of practices that are accomplished in social action and, therefore, can differ according to the specific gender relations existing in different social settings. This critical perspective allowed studying men’s experiences of health and illness by taking into account also its complex relation with gender construction, but also with structural differences and relational contexts. This research explored, through the conduction of 40 in-depth interviews, the experiences of men living with an intrusive chronic illness, autoimmune diabetes. This condition requires a series of self- management practices in everyday life that could be considered as emasculating (e.g. eating healthy, body discipline and self-monitoring) and that may pose specific challenges to dominant assumptions of masculinity such as bodily strength, control of the body and of emotions, independence and resistance to pain, and for this reason it has been considered as particularly appropriate for exploring the complex intertwining of chronic illness and gender. More specifically, the analysis focused on three areas: namely, the impact of chronic illness in the everyday life; the multiple ways of “doing” masculinity in the context of the “doing” of autoimmune diabetes; and, lastly, the impact of diabetes and of the medicalization of male sexual health on sexuality and intimacy practices. Overall, the empirical material allowed for great insight into men’s experiences of illness and depicted a complex picture, very different from the monolithic description offered by the majority of studies previously conducted on this issue.

MEN, MASCULINITIES AND DIABETES. A QUALITATIVE RESEARCH ON THE EVERYDAY LIFE OF MEN WITH A CHRONIC ILLNESS / V. Quaglia ; supervisor: R. Sassatelli ; co-supervisor: R. Ferrero Camoletto ; coordinatore: M. Cardano. - : . DIPARTIMENTO DI SCIENZE SOCIALI E POLITICHE, 2019 Feb 18. ((31. ciclo, Anno Accademico 2018. [10.13130/quaglia-valeria_phd2019-02-18].

MEN, MASCULINITIES AND DIABETES. A QUALITATIVE RESEARCH ON THE EVERYDAY LIFE OF MEN WITH A CHRONIC ILLNESS

V. Quaglia
2019

Abstract

National and international epidemiological data show a general male disadvantage in health, and the dominant explanation for men’s poorer health status usually points to men’s belief and behaviours in relation to health and illness: men, it is suggested, disregard health and mismanage illness in order to fulfil social expectations around masculinity. The present research responds to a call for empirical studies that explore men’s health and illness practices not through biomedical or behavioural explanations, which tend to homogenize and oversimplify men’s experiences, rather with a critical approach that would allow to go beyond the idea that “masculinity is dangerous to men’s health.” Masculinity is here intended not as a fixed, universal, biological trait, but rather as a configuration of practices that are accomplished in social action and, therefore, can differ according to the specific gender relations existing in different social settings. This critical perspective allowed studying men’s experiences of health and illness by taking into account also its complex relation with gender construction, but also with structural differences and relational contexts. This research explored, through the conduction of 40 in-depth interviews, the experiences of men living with an intrusive chronic illness, autoimmune diabetes. This condition requires a series of self- management practices in everyday life that could be considered as emasculating (e.g. eating healthy, body discipline and self-monitoring) and that may pose specific challenges to dominant assumptions of masculinity such as bodily strength, control of the body and of emotions, independence and resistance to pain, and for this reason it has been considered as particularly appropriate for exploring the complex intertwining of chronic illness and gender. More specifically, the analysis focused on three areas: namely, the impact of chronic illness in the everyday life; the multiple ways of “doing” masculinity in the context of the “doing” of autoimmune diabetes; and, lastly, the impact of diabetes and of the medicalization of male sexual health on sexuality and intimacy practices. Overall, the empirical material allowed for great insight into men’s experiences of illness and depicted a complex picture, very different from the monolithic description offered by the majority of studies previously conducted on this issue.
SASSATELLI, ROBERTA
Masculinity; men's health; chronic illness; qualitative research; health; body; diabetes; sexuality
Settore SPS/08 - Sociologia dei Processi Culturali e Comunicativi
Settore SPS/07 - Sociologia Generale
MEN, MASCULINITIES AND DIABETES. A QUALITATIVE RESEARCH ON THE EVERYDAY LIFE OF MEN WITH A CHRONIC ILLNESS / V. Quaglia ; supervisor: R. Sassatelli ; co-supervisor: R. Ferrero Camoletto ; coordinatore: M. Cardano. - : . DIPARTIMENTO DI SCIENZE SOCIALI E POLITICHE, 2019 Feb 18. ((31. ciclo, Anno Accademico 2018. [10.13130/quaglia-valeria_phd2019-02-18].
Doctoral Thesis
File in questo prodotto:
File Dimensione Formato  
phd_unimi_R11370.pdf

embargo fino al 25/07/2020

Descrizione: Tesi di dottorato
Tipologia: Tesi di dottorato completa
Dimensione 8.77 MB
Formato Adobe PDF
8.77 MB Adobe PDF Visualizza/Apri
Pubblicazioni consigliate

Caricamento pubblicazioni consigliate

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/614938
Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? ND
  • Scopus ND
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? ND
social impact