‘Lad culture’ in the university setting
As part of the university’s Diversity Month series of events, SunGen ran a panel discussion on ‘lad culture’ on Friday 20th November. This resulted in some very interesting and impassioned debates about just what we mean by ‘lad culture’, and indeed how the term ‘lad’ risks being demonised outside of the specific use of this description of behaviour. Further points were raised in the following areas:
- The need to understand the multifaceted nature of masculinities.
- The notion of hybrid masculinities and how this might serve to mask the continued existence of patriarchy.
- Self reflexivity and exploration of one’s own identity is a way to deal with more covert forms of abusive and exploitative behaviours and attitudes.
Various ideas were discussed as to how problematic behaviour as characterised by ‘lad culture’ can be tackled in a university setting.
- How we can include raising awareness of these negative behaviours (not only towards women but men also) within the context of the educational curriculum and within the context of the university’s employability agenda.
- There was a discussion of the need to have effective interventions such as the ‘Bystander intervention programme’.
- More research required into the extent of the problem perhaps through the use of more nuanced questions – e.g. examples of behaviours rather than simply asking questions such as ‘do you believe that lad culture exists in the university’?