Men’s Rights Course Causes Controversy in Australia

Men's Rights Course Controversy in Australia

A world-first “male studies” course is to commence at the University of South Australia (UniSA) this year, causing the university some controversy for employing men’s rights extremists to teach the course.

Men’s studies, which addresses masculinity from a pro-feminist perspective, has long been taught as a part of university sociology and gender studies departments. However, male studies are slated to be taught with anti-feminist sympathies.

The UniSA has one confirmed course on male health, and three proposed courses on males and society, males and sexism, and psychological therapy with males. The male health course is to be delivered chiefly online and will cost $1800, which is less than most university courses in Australia.

The largest university in South Australia, UniSA is ranked a lowly 17th out of all Australian universities, according to QS rankings.

According to the University of South Australia, the male health course is to be delivered by Associate Professor Gary Misan. However, an unconfirmed document has emerged on A Voice for Men, causing controversy by detailing a plethora of guest lecturers for the subject who are vocal men’s rights proponents that are known for arguing that women’s rights have eclipsed those of men in public and private life.

A Voice for Men is a men’s rights activist group, and sometimes regarded as a hate group. They have recently become known for distorting rape statistics to demonstrate grossly inflated rates of false rape accusations and of female perpetrators.

The UniSA today released a statement clarifying that the course will be a professional certificate in male health and denied the existence of the three other proposed courses. The university distanced themselves from anti-feminist comments made by university staff affiliated with the course. In the statement on their website, UniSA wrote that “these comments were not made by UniSA staff and have no relevance to the new health-related certificate being introduced by the University”. However on their website, the profile of Associate Professor Gary Misan still advises that he is to be the program coordinator for Male Studies.

Dr Misan told the Advertiser, an Adelaide newspaper, “”It’s very difficult for anybody who has opposing views to get a word in. As soon as somebody mentions anything they perceive as being anti-feminist they’re pilloried and in some cases almost persecuted.”

The article breaking the news on the Advertiser suggested links between the new course and A Voice for Men. In an article on the A Voice for Men website, editor Paul Elam labelled the Advertiser article “another very, very dumb move from very, very corrupt people.”

Elam goes on to compare the criticism of the male studies course to historical civil rights movements by writing “We have seen this pattern before in every civil rights movement in history. They will persecute those who would work with them, till what is left are those who will not.”

The journalist behind the Advertiser article, Tory Shepherd, is attacked by Elam on a page created on A Voice for Men over two years ago. The page accuses her of being a “shepherd of lies.”

Women’s groups collectives from Australian universities are planning on sending UniSA condemnations of their male studies courses if they are to feature men’s rights activists. The courses are still causing controversy.

By Natasha Abrahams

Adelaide Now
Sydney Morning Herald

14 Responses to "Men’s Rights Course Causes Controversy in Australia"

  1. tehherb   January 15, 2014 at 6:50 pm

    why is this discussion even going on? if there’s women’s rights/health courses whatever then there should be equal opportunity for men to have the same courses.

  2. Helena   January 15, 2014 at 3:53 am

    Hm, seems like we have one set of rules for women and one set of rules for men. If a woman sticks up for women’s rights, she’s a saint. If a man sticks up for men’s rights (and the rights of women who love men and disagree with feminism), he’s a villain. Even a three-year-old can see the hypocrisy in this. Why aren’t Australian men allowed equal rights, even in the extremely insular and artificial world of academia? Could it be that feminists and/or women might have to examine their own anti-male bigotry and vile hate speech? Could it be that women – shock, horror – are actually in the wrong and need to repent?

    And considering all the malicious and horrifying deceitful things feminists say (I’m talking about you, Natasha Stott Despoja), I’m surprised feminism hasn’t been outlawed for what it is – an evil and disgusting hate movement. Ms Stott Despoja – please stop committing horrible hate speech and/or hate crimes against human males. It’s really, really immoral. My heart bleeds for the children, especially the sons, of the modern feminist-trained woman.

  3. ZimbaZumba   January 14, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    RE: “A Voice for Men is a men’s rights activist group, and sometimes regarded as a hate group. They have recently become known for distorting rape statistics to demonstrate grossly inflated rates of false rape accusations and of female perpetrators.”

    Since when has a contrary opinion been a distortion? Nice innuendo with the hate group sentence. Making pejorative statements like that without further clarification or justification is gutter journalism. I think people have a right to expect better of you.

  4. ZimbaZumba   January 14, 2014 at 12:52 pm

    “…employing men’s rights extremists to teach the course”

    Firstly the Men involved aren’t extremist in any sense of the word. But also aren’t Women’s Studies Depts. brimming over with Feminist extremists?


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