Gender-sensitive socialization

The expert group meeting on Male Roles and Masculinities in the Perspective of a Culture of Peace held in Norway (September 1997), reflected the understanding that rigid and stereotyped gender roles prevent individuals from realizing their full potential and run counter to the principle of participatory democracy.

It explored the social, cultural and economic conditions producing violence among men, political and practical strategies for reducing men’s violence, and the possibilities for raising boys in ways that emphasize qualities such as emotional response, caring, and communication skills that are vital to a culture of peace.

Follow-up activities include the translation of the report into Russian and Swahili in addition to English, French and Spanish, support to men’s anti-violence networks, seminars on gender-sensitive, non-violent male roles and masculinities, new university curricula and men’s marches against violence. Suggestions for an International Men’s Day and a UN conference on men have also been made. A teacher’s syllabus for education for a gender-sensitive culture of peace and non-violence, developed in cooperation with Colombia University will be ready for use in automn 2000.

Strategic Objective E.4 Promote women’s contribution to fostering a culture of peace

Actions to be taken

146. By Governments, international and regional intergovernmental institutions and non-governmental organizations:

(a) Promote peaceful conflict resolution and peace, reconciliation and tolerance through education, training, community actions and youth exchange programmes, in particular for young women;

(b) Encourage the further development of peace research, involving the participation of women, to examine the impact of armed conflict on women and children and the nature and contribution of women’s participation in national, regional and international peace movements; engage in research and identify innovative mechanisms for containing violence and for conflict resolution for public dissemination and for use by women and men;

(c) Develop and disseminate research on the physical, psychological, economic and social effects of armed conflicts on women, particularly young women and girls, with a view to developing policies and programmes to address the consequences of conflicts;

(d) Consider establishing educational programmes for girls and boys to foster a culture of peace, focusing on conflict resolution by non-violent means and the promotion of tolerance.

Beijing Platform for Action (1995)

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