Publication Date


Document Type

Masters Thesis


School for Social Work


Male social workers, Gender identity, Masculinity, Qualitative


This qualitative study examines male gender identity in social work. The purpose of this study was exploratory in nature and asked how men in social work construct and reflect on their male identity. The investigation is based on the perspectives of 12 male licensed social workers from across the country. Further, the study explores influences of male gender identity construction, the male experience in social work education and the male experience in social work practice. The most compelling findings were that while men tend to be the numerical minority in social work they still occupy more positions of privilege; that men's awareness of their gender identity correlated with a desire to end gender oppression; and that men who go into social work either fit their concept of identity to fit the context of social work, or fit the context of social work to be in congruence with their male identity. Implications for social work education and practice highlight a need to further understand masculinity in order to end gender inequality in social work.




iii, 48 pages. Thesis (M.S.W.)-Smith College School for Social Work, 2014. Includes bibliographical references (pages 40-41)