Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Understanding male carers: masculinity caring and age
Author: Gollins, Tim
ISNI:       0000 0001 3502 2291
Awarding Body: University of Sheffield
Current Institution: University of Sheffield
Date of Award: 2007
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Research on carers has shown that, whilst there are often significant differences between men and women in terms of activity and intensity within filial and sibling caring relationships, the respective contributions ofmale and female spousal carers are very similar. Nevertheless, despite feminist considerations of the informal caring that men do, the qualitative experience ofmale carers has not received the same in-depth examination as that offemale carers. This thesis explores the way in which thirty men, identified as carers for their spouse, construct their understanding ofcaring and masculinity. The influence ofageing and retirement in this process are also considered. Fifty-nine qualitative interviews were gathered and analysed using feminist approaches -premised on the co-procluction of knowledge. The theoretical framework of the study prioritised the agency ofindividual male carers, albeit constrained by material realities of an ageing body, and retirement. The thesis offers a new framework for understanding the way men undertake informal caring activities for their spouse and the emotional as well as practical significance ofinformal caring for them. An important aspect ofthe framework is that it describes how men, who begin to care for their spouse informally, often do so without an awareness ofneed and the practical caring skills they require to care holistically: Older men, however, particularly when they have experienced their own health problems, show greater responsiveness to their wife, enabling a more holistic caring relationship to develop. The framework also shows how this transition is influenced by male carers' interaction with health care professionals, support groups, family, and friends. Finally, the study points to potential topics for future research, particularly the relationship between masculinity, ageing and life course. It also confirms the conclusions ofrecent theoretical research on men and masculinity that suggests the importance oflooking at men's everyday practices, and not just focussing on men's hegemonic behaviours, because after all, men do not always behave in hegemonic ways, but men are always gendered.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available