1st Edition

The Bro Code The Fallout of Raising Boys to Objectify and Subordinate Women

By Thomas Keith Copyright 2021
    274 Pages
    by Routledge

    274 Pages
    by Routledge

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    Extending from the belief that masculinities are multiple, consisting of complexities and constructions that make up the traits associated with each, this book explores the various ways in which boys and men are conditioned to view women as inferior to themselves and predominantly sexual objects—and the deleterious effects this has on both women and men, society, and culture at large.

    Beginning in childhood, the book provides a critical framework to understand one form of masculinity referred to as "bro culture," and how it is reproduced and reinforced through popular culture, social institutions, and patriarchal forms of religion and politics. Weaving together current research with illuminating historical and contemporary examples, Thomas Keith unpacks the attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors that constitute this subculture and reveals the ways in which traditional and outdated codes of manhood, power, and gender relations have evolved into problematic forms of sexism, misogyny, and abuse. For as much as popular culture is revealed to be a contributing factor in the passage of bro codes, the book also includes examples of cultural forces that are challenging and seeking to overthrow the core tenets in powerful and lasting ways.

    Timely and thought-provoking, The Bro Code addresses the implications of an enduring social problem and moves us to reflect on ways to empower men away from this toxic form of masculinity.

    Introduction; Chapter 1: Raising Boys on Sexism; Chapter 2: Bro Culture in the Age of #metoo; Chapter 3: Frat Life: A Continuum from Honor Societies to Toxic Bro-hood; Chapter 4: The Bro Code of Silence: How Men's Silence Harms Women and Men; Chapter 5: Advertising’s Sexist Call to Men; Chapter 6: A Bro-Manual to Media; Chapter 7: Musical Misogynists: The Beat of Bro Culture; Chapter 8: Pornography: Sex-Ed for Bros; Chapter 9: Trump and Political Sexism; Chapter 10: Religious Bros; Epilogue


    Thomas Keith teaches philosophy and gender studies at Claremont Graduate University and California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. He has wrote, directed, and produced the bestselling Media Education Foundation films Generation M: Misogyny in Media and Culture and The Bro Code: How Contemporary Culture Creates Sexist Men, which are used in classrooms around the world. His latest film, The Empathy Gap: Masculinity and the Courage to Change, was released in 2015 and has been met with sensational reviews. He recently published Masculinities in Contemporary American Culture (Routledge 2017).

    Thomas Keith possesses keen insight and a precise and illuminating lens when examining men and masculinities in the 21st century. He helps readers understand how antiquated codes and tropes of masculinity have grown old and even toxic to men’s humanity and that of others. The radiant illumination provides an opportunity for individual men and the culture of masculinity to change, evolve and become better versions of themselves.   

    Randy Flood, Director, Men's Resource Center of West Michigan

    Longtime anti-sexist activist and filmmaker Thomas Keith’s trenchant and compassionate analysis of the harm that sexism does to both men and women is the latest in his significant contributions to the field.  He educates and inspires and moves us to take action.  We are so lucky to have him. 

    Jean Kilbourne, Author, Filmmaker and Activist

    The Bro Code is an incredibly comprehensive and informed analysis of the many ways that our culture continues to indoctrinate young men with a set of misleading and misogynous ideas about manhood, gender and power. It's a must-read for anyone who wants to help these young men develop healthier, more inclusive, and more adaptive identities and behaviors for their lives in the 21st century.

    Jackson Katz, author of The Macho Paradox: Why Some Men Hurt Women and How All Men Can Help