School of Arts and Cultures

Staff Profiles

Dr Chris Haywood

Reader in Critical Masculinity Studies



Chris Haywood is currently Director of Research for the School of Arts and Cultures. He has previously been Director of Teaching and Learning and Director of Postgraduate Studies. His main research interests focus on exploring the limits of theoretical and conceptual frameworks to explain and understand men and masculinities. He is currently working on examining how men negotiate different dating practices in the areas of speed dating, online dating, holiday romance, anonymous sex and mobile romance. Alongside this, he is also developing research in the field of men, risk and sexual health. His interests also include cultural analyses of schooling and education. A key part of this work involves exploring the interplay between the institutionally-led discursive formation of identity categories and how those discourses are lived out. One areas of current concern is to think about how schools, gender their pupils through age, racial and sexual categories. 


Men Masculinity and Dating

Contemporary dating practices, such as online dating, speed dating and mobile romance are emerging alongside more traditional dating practices, such as family and friend introductions, meetings in bars and clubs and encounters in everyday social life. Although studies are beginning to identify the transformational potential of these contemporary dating practices for women, Lesbian and Gay communities and young people (see for example, Harcourt, 2005; Gomez, 2010; Bauermeister et al., 2012), there is relatively less research that explores how heterosexual men are responding to these changes. This project responds to the need for research that provides more empirically grounded data on heterosexual men’s identities and subjectivities (Hockey et al, 2007; Mooney-Somers and Ussher, 2010).At present, we remain highly dependent upon media narratives that offer contradictory accounts of men’s responses to contemporary dating practices. On one hand, such narratives are claiming that that new forms of dating are providing men with the opportunity to be more caring and sensitive (Hilton, 2011; Burke, 2012). On the other, such accounts are suggesting that there is a ‘menaissance’ – a cultural moment where ‘post-sensitive’ men are responding to change by drawing upon traditional masculine tropes such as emotional stoicism and toughness (Haddow, 2010; Fitzgerald, 2012). Furthermore, despite the increasing availability of dating advice in magazines and on television, radio and the internet, very little guidance and support is available for heterosexual men to help them navigate the social, emotional, health and physical risks associated with contemporary dating practices. This project responds to a current absence in the field to explain the relationships between, men, masculinity and dating.


Gendering Sex Addiction

This project focuses on understanding of the relationship between sex addiction, gender and health. Despite the overwhelming number of referrals for therapy being men with some estimates suggesting a ratio differential as large as 5:1 (Garcia et al. 2016), researchers have yet to engage with men’s sex addiction as a gendered phenomenon. Where gender has been addressed, it is used primarily to describe women’s behaviour (Rosenberg, 2011), or as a masculine and feminine characteristic or trait that determines levels of propensity or risk. In response, this project aims to understand how men’s sexual attitudes and behaviours are cohered through social norms and cultural expectations about their masculinity. Thus the project will provide empirically-based knowledge that will enable health care professionals to develop responsive care and support mechanisms for men, their partners and their families. In turn, the project will make available insights that will feed into strategies tackling public health outcomes such as increased STIs and HIV and/or even unintended pregnancies and its consequences.


Men, Masculinity and Disability (with the Papworth Trust)

The study of men with disabilities is nothing new. By default, men have often been at the centre of such analysis without reference to their gender. As a result, men’s emotions and broader well-being is often understood as unproblematic and self-evident. When masculinity is an issue, it is often framed through a continuum either as having too much resulting in violence and aggression or too little, resulting in risk and vulnerability.  However, this Knowledge Exchange will form part of a recent trend of understanding men’s disabilities through their gendered identities.  Dr Haywood and the Papworth Trust the will work together to embed an understanding of men and masculinity through a series of activities designed to ensure enhance the Organization’s effectiveness of service provision and the enhancement of men with disabilities quality of life.


The Papworth Trust has identified a number of areas that require them to have a better knowledge and understanding of men and masculinity. For example, in their work, they have found that the concerns of men with disabilities face include an inability to be able to earn a wage sufficient to support their families, limitations in ability to “physically protect” their partner or children and inability to take part in sports or other pursuits in the same way as other men. Furthermore, men are also highlighting the embarrassment of having personal care provided by (young) female carers, being able to attract and/or retain partners as a result of physical or medical barriers and difficulties in conversing with other men about their disability. 



Undergraduate Teaching

COM 2071 Sex,Sexuality and Desire
COM 3073 Research Dissertation

Postgraduate Teaching

Contributing to the following modules: 

M.A Media Analysis
M.A Methodologies

Postgraduate Research Students 

Jhitsayarat Siripai

Lina Khoulani

Tingting LI

Steve Humble

Norah Altuwayjiri

Anna  Belinda Holt

Gulbigash Omarova