Date of Award


Degree Type

Restricted Access Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)




Over the last thirty or so years, feminist scholars have been highly critical of the ways that gender roles have been understood, particularly in religious institutions, including Roman Catholicism. Although some changes have been made (e.g., women are able to take on roles that were prohibited in the recent past), serious problems still remain. Gender roles are seen as "given" by God and/or as a part of our human nature. The many problems relating to gender roles affect not only women, but also men, yet very little attention has been paid to their negative implications for men. This dissertation proposes to develop a more adequate understanding of masculinity from a Roman Catholic perspective. In order to develop this, I will draw on historical perspectives, feminist scholarship, scholarship by men on gender, and recent scholarship in the natural and social sciences. In addition, I will show how this idea of masculinity relates to a culture outside the West: Korea. It is possible, I will argue, to develop an understanding of masculinity that moves beyond gender complementarity (i.e. "separate but equal" attitude towards gender), that allows for the flourishing of both sexes, and that promotes a just and loving way of living as a man.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
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