Nick Sandor (left) and Sheldon Kitzul (right) organized the first ReImagining Masculinities conference at UVic. Now, the second one will run on Nov. 16 to explore what it’s like to identify as male in the post #MeToo world. (Black Press Media File)

UVic conference explores healthy ways to express masculinity

ReImagining Masculinity conference Nov. 16 hopes to cultivate healthy, non-violent conversations

An upcoming conference at the University of Victoria (UVic) explores a healthy approach to masculinity.

The second ReImagining Masculinities conference on Nov. 16 hopes to cultivate “meaningful conversations about healthy, non-violent masculinities” in a time where men’s behaviour is under the microscope following the #MeToo movement.

“Men are often aware that there is a shifting environment all around them and this often results in confusion and anxiety about ‘being a man,’” said Sheldon Kitzul, co-founder and media spokesperson in a statement. “We want to highlight that masculinity doesn’t have to be the one-dimensional view we’re all used to. Masculinity is multi-dimensional and we all benefit as a society when we try that on.”

ALSO READ: Victoria team wonders what ReImagining Masculinities could do

The workshops and panelists will look at topics such as modern dating, consent, changing masculinity in sport, men’s and men-identified peoples’ metal health and handling strong emotions – all with aims of eliminating violence.

The key presenter at the conference is Tim Skuce, assistant professor in the faculty of education at Brandon University in Manitoba.

Skuce’s research focuses on how the current conversations about masculinity influences the identities of elite-level hockey players in a Canadian context.

People of any age or gender are welcome to come to the event, with youth passes available for free if participants are 19 and under.

“Much of what we learn about what the expectations of being a man, being masculine starts early in life,” Kitzul said. “This helps give boys another way to think about masculinity so they know they don’t have to fit in to that one-man box, so to speak.”

ALSO READ: Mermen calendar targets ‘toxic masculinity,’ raises big money for charities

Supporters of the upcoming conference include UVic, the Island Sexual Health Society, Men’s Therapy Centre, Victoria Family Court and Youth Justice and the BC Government Service Employees Union.

The event runs on Nov. 16 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the David Lam Auditorium at UVic at 3800 Finnerty Rd.

Tickets range in price from $30-50. For more information on free tickets for youth you can email reimaginemasc@gmail.com.

For more information you can visit reimaginingmasculinities.com or eventbrite.com.

vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca

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