International Journal of
Psychology and Counselling

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Psychol. Couns.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2499
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJPC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 213

Full Length Research Paper

Demographic and personal correlates of ‘new masculinities’: Focus on the role of emotional intelligence

Leehu Zysberg*
  • Leehu Zysberg*
  • Gordon College of Education, Israel.
  • Google Scholar
Avigail Moore
  • Avigail Moore
  • Tel Hai College, Israel.
  • Google Scholar


  •  Received: 10 November 2016
  •  Accepted: 05 January 2017
  •  Published: 31 January 2017

 ABSTRACT

This research aims to gain a better understanding of a popular term in gender-talk, using a quantitative approach. It proposes a working definition of ‘new masculinities’ and explores some of its antecedents, paying special attention to the concept of emotional intelligence (EI). Given the lack of empirical research on the nature of ‘new masculinities’ and its components this study is based on a selection of proxy measures associated with its core characteristics, described in the literature. We proposed that adoption of egalitarian gender role attitudes, low levels of sexism, low conformity to traditional masculine norms and a tendency toward androgyny, may represent the concept effectively. In search of potential correlates of new masculinity we hypothesized that EI will positively associate with measures of new masculinities even after controlling for background variables known to interact with gender role attitudes (e.g.: age and education). Two hundred and fifteen men sampled from educational and work settings in northern Israel filled out measures of the above- detailed variables. Structural equation modeling analysis demonstrated that: a) The proxy measures converged on a single factor, suggesting they represent a single essence we call ‘new masculinities’ and (b) EI associated with the latent factor representing ‘new masculinities’, as did age. The potential implications of our findings are discussed.

Key words: maculinitiy, new masculinity, inclusive masculinities, emotional intelligence.


 INTRODUCTION

Traditional views of masculinity are still prevalent and emphasize power, hegemony, dominance, aggression and a limited scope of emotional expression and interpersonal communication (Hofstede 2001; Martin and Govender, 2013). However, notions of alternative masculinities have gained ground in both popular discourse and scientific investigation (Warin, 2013). Catch-phrases like ‘new masculinities’, ‘flexible masculinities’ and ‘metro-sexuality’ have become common in popular literature and have drawn much attention and public discourse (Gee, 2013; Hekma, 2005; Sunbuloglu, 2014). They represent a collective awareness of the changing nature of current concepts of masculinities and no less than a revolution in individual and cultural perceptions of what it takes or means to be a man (Fanning and McKay, 1993). The shift in the language reflects at least two deeper trends: 1) Changes in the nature and content of masculinity, and more importantly (2) Diversification – from a single, hegemonic concept of what men should be we see a movement toward multiple masculinities – numerous ways to be a man (Reis and Grossmark, 2009).
 
Despite the notions’ popularity in popular media and culture, there is insufficient empirical evidence and exploration new masculinities, their antecedents, and correlates. Existing evidence does provide sporadic and context-specific support to the notion of a shifting, multi-tiered definition of masculinities (Anderson, 2010; Burns, 2011; Gee, 2013). Qualitative research charts new ground, describing shifting masculinities in various contexts (Anderson, 2005). However, definitions of the elusive concept, and factors associated with its emergence in individuals remain inconsistent. For example: while some authors define new masculinities as the maintenance of masculine gender identity while rejecting traditional, hegemonic masculinities notions (Messerschmidt, 2012), others define concepts like 'inclusive masculinity' referring to specific aspects of homophobia and misogyny as key factors in traditional masculinity concepts (Anderson, 2008).
In this study, we aim to present a working definition of ‘new masculinities’ and explore some of its potential correlates in a sample of men recruited from both college and work settings to allow for a broad range of demographic characteristics.
 
What are ‘new masculinities’?
 
Existing accounts have suggested an evolution in perceptions of what constitutes ‘maleness’: male gender norms are slowly becoming more diverse and flexible than ever before, while definitions and coherent models of ‘new masculinities’ are yet to be offered. The popular literature often discusses public figures who display characteristics associated with ‘new masculinity’ such as sensitivity, self-awareness, and emphasis on appearance and aesthetics (Brett and Gnoth, 2005; Gee, 2013; Whitehead, 2008). Masculinity is often re-conceptualized in cultural contexts in which diversity appreciation is a value. For example, homosexuality, shifting family structures and parenthood, chronic illness, sexual function and dysfunction, job and joblessness issues, etc., have created both public discourse as well as empirical investigations concerning men’s identities in complex and perplexing times (Anderson, 2010; Hekma, 2005; Ruspini, 2011). 'New masculinities', 'Inclusive 'inclusive masculinities' and 'flexible masculinity' are some of the common terms used in the  empirical  literature  reflecting the rich palette of factors and themes associated with the paradigm shift but also reflecting confusion and inconsistency. As a result there are also no validated dedicated measures of the concepts (though some have offered insight into their nature via ethnographic studies, Anderson, 2008; Swain, 2006). We therefore adopt the term ‘new masculinities’ as an umbrella name to represent the commonalities or shared core among current conceptions of shifting, flexible, alternative masculine identities.
 
Toward a working definition of ‘new masculinities’
 
The first step in attempting to define and assess ‘new masculinities’ was to reach a working-definition of the concept, by qualitative analysis of the literature on associated concepts and terms. We used academic search engines (EBSCO, PsychInfo and Google scholar) to search for the terms ‘new masculinities’, ‘flexible masculinity’, and ‘inclusive masculinities’. The search yielded 1200 results. We then selected for further review only articles or book chapters that contained a direct definition or description of behaviors associated with the target terms. The final pool from which our definition was gathered included 27 texts. A review of the definitions offered in the selected texts identified common features (repeating 3 three times or more) and characteristics associated with ‘new masculinities’ (we will use this term as a representative concept of the variety of terms used in the literature to describe the phenomenon). These include: Sensitivity, honesty, assertiveness, self-awareness, willingness to share and reach out to others (including other men), accountability, commitment, being active in a non-violent manner, warmth and emotionally, genuineness, openness, and acceptance of others are the most commonly mentioned characteristics (Adams, 2011; Anderson, 2012; Anderson and McGuire 2010; Burns 2011; Coad, 2008; Pomper, 2010; Roberts, 2013; Rosen et al., 2004; Ruspini, 2011; Swain, 2006; Whitehead, 2008). Such basic predispositions also account for a broad range of behaviors and lifestyles associated with ‘new masculinities’ that were mentioned in the literature: Self-care, investment in meaningful relationships, open communication, a life-style geared toward a better balance of work and family roles, willingness to admit weakness and need of help, are the most commonly mentioned behavior patterns (Anderson, 2009; Brett and Gnoth, 2005; Coad, 2008; Kegan-Gardiner, 2002). So do these aspects have something in common - a core that we may indeed refer to as basis of new masculinities? At least at the theoretical level, it seems like two lines connect the dots to create a meaningful whole: (1) Flexibility: all the characteristics mentioned in the literature fit personality and functional definitions of psychological flexibility and adaptability (Leaman and Bordass, 2004).  (2)  Attention  to  emotion: the above characteristics fit well with definitions and consequences of adaptive emotional awareness and regulation (Barrett et al., 2000). These two components will be accounted for in more details later in this manuscript.
 
It is worthwhile mentioning that some aspects of behavior associated with ‘new masculinities’ are also described as undesirable, with descriptors such as vanity; consumerism and more (Pompper, 2010).
 
A few authors in this field have voiced questions regarding the validity of the concept of ‘new masculinity’ or other associated terms: is it a new entity, or is it simply the absence of traditional masculinity (Connel, 2005)? In the absence of an established model, we worked under the following assumptions: a) Much like traditional or hegemonic masculinity (Connell and Messerschmidt, 2005), what we refer to here as ‘new masculinities’ is a pattern, or a profile of tendencies, self-definitions and behavior patterns. (b) These patterns are sometimes opposite but in most cases just different than those included under traditional definitions (Gough, 2006; Levant and Pollack, 2008). Therefore we can define new masculinity as a new emerging patterns of perceptions, pre-dispositions and behaviors that can be assessed using existing measures and concepts, at least as a first step toward a more advanced definition. Based on the above we may posit that ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ is an umbrella term for a group of psychological patterns including the rejection of some rigid traditional male norms, embracing flexibility in emotional and interpersonal realms, while maintaining a functional and personally meaningful male identity. We will operationalize this definition for the purpose of this study later in this report.
 
Antecedents of new masculinity
 
Classic research in the psychology of gender identifies a broad range of factors associated with the formation of traditional versus more flexible gender roles (Spence and Helmreich, 1978). Most current research operates under the assumption that the same factors are at work in the formation of non-traditional or ‘new’ masculinitymasculinities. Among the most prominent environmental factors mentioned are parental socialization and exposure to parents' gender roles (Beal, 1994), interactions with peers (Eagly, 1987), culture and societal messages conveyed by a broad range of agents, from popular media to schools and family circles (Chua and Fujino, 2007; Rewaland Kapur, 1991). Additional factors such as changing work and career paths, economic factors in the job-market, immigration and cyber-social networks are also mentioned in the current literature on gender role formation and change (Chua and Fujino, 2007; Marchetti, 2012; Solari, 2006). Personal factors such as age, education, socio-economic status (SES) and religiosity have also been mentioned in the literature as factors associated with the readiness to  adopt  a  non-traditional view of one's gender role and gender identity (Fanning and Mckay, 1993; Johansso and Klinth, 2008; Scher et al., 1988). Social factors such as culture, politics and even economics play a role in shaping gender roles too, however this paper and the model presented herein focus on the personal level and propose a relatively new concept that may shed new light on the ideas presented here. We propose Emotional Intelligence as another personal attribute that may play a meaningful role in the adoption of ‘new masculinities’.
 
Emotional Intelligence and the ‘new’ masculinity
 
Emotional intelligence (EI) is a relatively new concept in psychological science, pertaining to individuals’ ability to identify emotion, integrate emotions in thought, process and understand complex emotions and ultimately regulate and manage emotions in an effective manner (Mayer et al., 1999; Schutte et al., 1998). By definition then, EI is associated with emotional acuity, expression and possibly with interpersonal communication and expressiveness (e.g.: Schroeder-Abe and Schutz, 2011). As such it may have a potential role in the formation and expression of behaviors associated with gender roles, especially behaviors of emotion expression and communication. The literatureBem (1974) posits that traditional male roles limit emotional display or communication and view then as ‘unmanly’ (Bem, 1974). However the current literature does emphasize emotional acuity, emotional genuineness and interpersonal communication, as key components of ‘new masculinities’ as demonstrated above. We therefore hypothesize that EI may provide individuals with the potential to adopt skills and behavior patterns congruent with the concept of ‘new masculinities’.
 
We were able to identify only a single study that approached the question of EI’s association with gender roles and gendered behaviors. The study found a positive correlation between androgyny and EI: Individuals with higher EI tended to be more androgynous and flexible in their self-reported gender role attributes (Guastello and Guastello, 2003). In light of the lack of sufficient evidence regarding this potential association we propose, in light of the single empirical study described here and the theoretical structure of both ‘new masculinity’ and emotional intelligence there may be an association between the abilities under the EI umbrella and the characteristics of ‘new masculinities’. In seeking to add to the evidence and theory in this area, we posited that EI will positively associate with characteristics of ‘new masculinities’.
 
Rationale of the current study
 
Since notions of masculinities' are in their theoretical and empirical infancy, we adopted the above stated working definition   for    this    study.    Conceptions    of    shifting masculinity vary extensively: from mere rejection of traditional aspects of the gender role to specific aspects such as the absence of homophobia in the definition of one's masculinities, or male friendships (Anderson, 2008; Cortese and Ling, 2011). Most research in this field has followed a qualitative, ethnographic or narrative perspective and methodologies.
 
For the purpose of the current study, and in the absence of existing validated measures of ‘new masculinity’masculinities’, we assessed the notion by using existing, validated proxies, reflecting the pattern described above. We used content analysis techniques (Mayring, 2004) to draw the following operationalization of the characteristics of new masculinity as described above. Two content-experts analyzed the definitions, asked to match each (when possible) with an existing measure out of an exhaustive list of gender role and gender research related measures. The results of this analysis are summarized in Table 1.
 
 
The final pattern to operationalize new masculinities included: Adoption of egalitarian gender role attitudes, low levels of sexism (which is the tendency to discriminate and negatively judge persons based on their gender, see: Glick and Fiske, 1996), low conformity to traditional masculine norms and a tendency toward androgyny. We hypothesized all shared a common core quality (that is: converge into a single common factor) – representing a core of a coherent perception of ‘new masculinities’ in the individuals’ own perception.
 
In exploring the potential correlates of this proposed pattern, we were specifically interested in the potential role of EI as a correlate of ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ patterns, and we examined it alongside other personal attributes already established in the literature as correlates of gender role formation and change: age and marital status (to accommodate for developmental changes), religiosity (as a major cultural aspect related to gender role definitions), and SES (education and income).
 
As mentioned above EI, by definition, reflects individuals’ ability to identify, process and regulate emotions in self and others in a manner that is effective and goal oriented (Zysberg and Tell, 2013). It is easy to identify commonalities between this definition and some of the aspects of ‘new masculinity’ behavior patterns (e.g.: broad emotional range, expressiveness, acceptance of others, etc.). Therefore on the theoretical model (based on the literature on EI and the literature on ‘new masculinity’masculinities’) it is reasonable to expect an association between the two. As described above, only meager evidence links EI with gender role patterns, but it generally supports the direction proposed here (Guastello and Guastello, 2003).
 
We therefore hypothesized that EI will associate with higher egalitarianism, lower sexism, lower conformity to traditional male norms and higher levels of androgyny, even after controlling for background variables. Data was obtained from a sample of heterosexual, adult men working or attending college in Northern Israel.To allow testing of this model we utilized Structural Equation Modeling technique (SEM: Ullman and Bentler, 2013).

 


 METHODS

Sample
 
We used a snowball sampling method to recruit 215 participants, all heterosexual   males,    residing    in    Israel,    either    working    or attending College. Ages ranged between 19-81 (mean=38.29; sd= 15.20). A little over half (55.4%) were undergraduate students and the rest were community dwelling adults, of which about 34% reported working full time and the remaining 10.6% reported working part time. Since Israeli students are typically older than their counterparts in the US and the EU, we reached a near-normal age distribution. About half (47.4%) were single, 48.8% were married or living with a partner and the remaining 3.8% were divorced, separated or widowers. The vast majority (95%) were Jewish, about 3% were Muslim and about 2% were Christian.
 
Measures
 
Conformity to masculine norms
 
The Conformity to Masculine Norms Inventory-46 (Parent and Moradi, 2009), a shortened form of the Conformity to Masculine Norms Inventory (CMNI; Mahalik et al., 2003) was used in this study. Forty-six items such as “I never share my feelings” or “it bothers me when I have to ask for help” are intended to assess traditional male gender-role conformity. Items are answered on a 4-point Likert scale, ranging from 0 = strongly disagree to 3 = strongly agree. Higher scores reflect higher conformity to masculine norms. Cronbach’s Alpha coefficient for the full scale in our study was 0.92.
 
Androgyny
 
The degree to which participants defined themselves in flexible, non-stereotypical gender roles terms was assessed based on the Bem Sex Role Inventory (BSRI), a veteran measure of gender role adoption as a part of one’s identity or personality (Bem, 1974). The scale includes 60 attributes (e.g.: “gullible” or “forceful”) that represent traditional masculine’ feminine and non-gender-specific aspects of self. Each is rated on a 7 point Likert scale, 1= never or almost never true of me, through 7- always or almost always true of me. The scale enjoys a bulk of research supporting its reliability and validity in various settings (Holt and Ellis, 1998). In our analysis we used only the androgyny score. Cronbach’s Alpha in our study was 0.77.
 
Attitudes towards gender-role equality
 
King and King's (1997) scale of gender role egalitarianism was used. This is a well-established and psychometrically sound scale, with Cronbach’s Alpha of around 0.90 (and 0.87 in the current study). Items include
statements such as “the care of infants should be performed primarily by mothers” or “men should not be  expected to be responsible for domestic tasks”. Responses were rated on a 5-point scale from 1 (strongly disagree) to 5 (strongly agree), with higher scores indicating lower egalitarianism.
 
Sexism
 
Sexism was measured by the Ambivalent Sexism Inventory by Glick and Fiske (1996). Ambivalent sexism includes two separate but interrelated components: (1) hostile sexism (hs), which involves negative perceptions of women, and (2) benevolent sexism (bs), a chivalrous ideology that offers protection and affection to women who adopt conventional gender roles. Items included statements such as “When women lose fairly they claim discrimination” or “women seek special favors under the guise of equality”.
 
Responses are provided on a five-point Likert-type scale (1 = strongly  disagree  to  5  =   strongly   agree),   with   higher   scores reflecting greater sexism. The Cronbach’s Alpha coefficient of the scales is 0.85 - 0.92 (for the bs and hs subscales respectively). Since both subscales were highly correlated in our study we used a single total score in our analyses.
 
Emotional Intelligence (EI)
 
We assessed EI using the Schutte et al. (1998) EI questionnaire, which is a 33 item self-report instrument assessing individuals’ perceived ability to identify emotions, understand emotional situations and act to regulate emotion in self and others. A sample item is: “I know when I should talk about my emotions with others”. A Likert type response scale measures agreement with each statement, with lower scores reflecting higher EI. The questionnaire showed appropriate psychometric qualities in previous research (e.g.: Schutte et al., 2002).
 
Demographics
 
We asked participants to report non-identifying personal data such as age, status as students or workers, self-reported religiosity (single item), education and income bracket.
 
Procedure
 
The study received IRB approval before data collection initiated. Potential participants were approached personally, on and off campus or at work, as well as on-line, through email – using a referral system. Participants were offered a small monetary compensation for their time. Of the 250 persons contacted, 215 provided full responses allowing analysis. The rest either declined to participate or provided partial information. Following entry of the data to the data base, we deleted all details that could identify the participants (e.g.: email address or other contact info collected for dispensing the monetary compensation). We then analyzed our data using IBM/SPSS version 20.0 and AMOS 19.0 (IBM 2012).


 RESULTS

We first examined the distribution of the study’s main measures. Descriptive statistics and zero-order Pearson correlations among the variable measures are presented in Table 2.
 
 
The statistics show the sample expressed relatively high level of egalitarianism, self-reported EI and androgyny, and moderate levels or sexism and conformity to masculine norms. This is to be expected given the nature of our sample, the implications of which will be discussed in our discussion section. The correlation patterns provide initial support to our hypothesis: Emotional intelligence associated with all ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ proxy measures in accordance with our expectations.
 
We then proceeded to test our model: While analyzing the entire model using SEM in AMOS version 19.0 (IBM 2013), we first examined the output that practically added up to a confirmatory factor analysis of the proxy measures of ‘new masculinity’ (defining the proposed common factor), using maximum likelihood estimation method. Looking at the model summary focusing first on the factorial structure behind our proxy measures, the results showed support for a single factorial structure for Androgyny, Sexism, Egalitarianism and Conformity to masculine norms. Chi square was non-significant despite the large sample size at 0.49 (df=2; p=0.78); Other goodness of fit indices were at the excellent range (CFI>0.99; NFI=0.99; RMSEA=0.01). The most heavily loaded score was that of gender egalitarianism, followed by sexism. Androgyny showed the lowest level of loading although it too was within the acceptable range.
 
When examining the full model using EI alongside age, marital status (we did not have data regarding number of children if there were any), education level, income level, and religiosity as predictors of the latent factor of ‘new masculinities’, we found that the model was not a good fit to the data, and showed that education, marital status and income levels did not associate with ‘new masculinities’. We then dropped all three variables from the model, and achieved a good fit to the data. The final results for the model, including goodness-of-fit indices are summarized in Figure 1.
 
 
EI showed a positive, moderately strong association with new masculinities, with age showing an unexpected positive association as well. Level of religiosity showed a low yet significant negative association with new masculinities.


 DISCUSSION

Both the empirical and the popular literature present evidence of gender role shifts not only in women (where evidence is ample) but also in men (Ruspini, 2011). The popular term ‘new masculinity/ies’ is often used to describe the results of that shift. Men who adopt a more balanced, flexible masculine identity are portrayed as responsible and caring, family-oriented, authentic, not afraid of showing emotion and sharing thoughts with others, self-aware and committed (to whatever they do), accepting and lacking fear or aggression toward the different (Cortese and Ling, 2011; Etienne, 2013). One of the core characteristics raised in discussions and descriptions of the new masculinity is emotional presence and expression, alongside effective communication. Both these characteristics may be associated with the  concept of Emotional intelligence (EI), reflecting individuals’ ability to identify, use and manage emotions effectively (Mayer et al., 1999; Mayer et al., 2008; Schutte et al., 1998).
 
In this study we explored the potential role of emotional intelligence as a correlate of ‘new masculinities’. In the absence of a consistent definition and a dedicated measure for ‘new masculinities’ we operationalized it using proxy measures in line with the concept’s descriptions in the literature. We hypothesized that EI will show positive associations with androgyny, and egalitarianism while negatively associating with conformity to traditional masculine norms as well as sexism. We tested our hypotheses in a heterosexual sample of males living, working or studying in Israel.Our results indicated preliminary support to the structural-validity of the proxy measures we used for assessing ‘new masculinities’: the results supported a single factor model. The model also suggested that this factor or latent variable is mainly loaded on egalitarianism, followed by lower sexism, and then to a lesser (yet significant) extent, lower conformity to traditional masculine norms and androgyny. This finding may lay the ground for future composite or even dedicated measures of ‘new masculinities’, should future studies re-affirm this factorial structure. It also may suggest a hierarchy in the components of new masculinities: emphasizing gender equality and abolishing rejecting sexism, while not necessarily giving up entirely on male characteristics and a distinct male identity. These hierarchies may of course change since by definition, new masculinities very across individuals, social groups and cultures, manifesting themselves in different forms while still associated with the core attributes supported by the factor analysis. While one might suspect that the new composite factor represents merely the lack of traditional masculinity, the fact that our data is based on a sample of heterosexual, functioning men, suggests that the pattern is associated with normative "maleness". As we mentioned, this is only a preliminary attempt, and future studies are required to continue a significant, evidence based discussion of the concept and its components. In testing our proposed model we found significant associations between EI and‘new masculinities’, all in line with our initial hypotheses. In addition, when controlling for demographic variables often associated with gender role acquisition   and   adoption,   EI    maintained    significant associations, age showed similar patterns, positively associating with egalitarianism and negatively associating with sexism and conformity to masculine norms. Religiosity, often associated with a more traditional perception of gender roles (Felty and Poloma, 1991) was found to negatively associate with ‘new masculinities’ in a moderate manner.
 
While lending support to our hypothesis suggesting EI may play a significant role in the adoption of ‘new masculinities’ this aspect of the results is not surprising: EI’s core definition or essence relates it to the ability and tendency to work effectively with emotions and communicate them with self and others (Mayer et al., 2008) – two very common characteristics associated with ‘new masculinity’ as noted above. Whether EI is just another characteristic of ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ or an antecedent can be debated. However – we adopted in this study the “ability model” of EI (Mayer et al., 1999), namely, a model that views EI as a human potential, having accordingly at least certain aspects that are innate (Mayer et al., 2008). Based on this assumption we may tentatively claim that EI can be regarded as a personal attribute serving as a facilitating factor in adopting ‘new masculinity’masculinities’. That notwithstanding, the relationship may well be cyclical in nature, with each operating to augment the other. Future research may wish to expand our understanding of this association from the developmental perspective.
 
A more surprising finding was the positive association found in this study between age and ‘new masculinity’masculinities’. This finding goes against the popular view of a generational gap where older men are more traditional in their perceptions of self  and  manhood  in  general  while ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ is are a trend among younger individuals (Cournoyer and Mahalik, 1995). In our sample older men expressed greater tendencies toward ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ than younger men, based on our proxy outcome measures. When re-evaluating these results, there is support for this direction in the literature. Looking at age as a proxy measure of human development, a few classic theories of psychological development provide a solid basis for interpretation of our results: For example Hy and Leovinger (2014) describe a model of life-long development based on classical theories of ego development (Westenberg et al., 2013). The model suggests that as individuals grow older, they tend to show a more complex, elaborate and sophisticated construct of self. This could account for our findings – as men grow older they are capable and allow themselves to integrate more aspects of manhood, including less-traditional aspects, into their own sense of self (or ego, using traditional language). There is evidence in the developmental literature for an association between age and greater flexibility in gender roles, coupled with perceived freedom to behave in a less gender-congruent manner (Berger et al., 2005). In this respect, we may suggest that developing and adopting a male identity on the ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ spectrum has less to do with current culture and fashion trends and more with life-experience, maturity and perhaps additional developmental aspects that are yet to be addressed. This idea is supported further by the lack of associations between formal education, socio-economic status and ‘new masculinity’. This surprising finding, (given the ample evidence supporting the negative association between  education,  and  social  status   with   traditional gender roles adoption) may suggest that adopting new masculinities is an internal, identity-related process rather than a social, or cultural phenomenon.
 
In interpreting our results one should bear in mind the study limitations, first and foremost the nature of our sample, which is non-representative (educated, no unemployed or poor, and sampled from a rather limited part of the country). Cultural differences may also stem from the fact that our participants may not resemble participants in other cultures regarding gender role perception and changes. Our correlational/ cross-sectional design also limits our ability to assume causal effects, but given the lack of research into this subject matter, mapping preliminary associations may have its value at this point.
 
Based on our results, and considering the study‘s limitations, future research may wish to examine EI alongside other personal antecedents of ‘new masculinity’ masculinities’ within varying cultural settings, and in broader, more inclusive samples. Identifying different patterns of new masculinities, and examining if and how they correspond with the model presented here will shed light on the external validity of the concept. Using longitudinal study designs may also help better understand developmental and causal association only suggested in our preliminary study. For practical reasons we chose a self-report measure of EI for our study, and it will be of added value to compare our results with data collected using an ability-test format for EI, as this may shed light on various measured aspects of EI and potential biases inherent in self-report versus test-format measures. ‘New masculinity’ masculinities’ is a potentially exciting notionfamily of perceptions, attitudes and attribution systems that shape individual behavior in manners we are yet to understand., and  shouldShould we be able to relate to it, measure it and study it within the empirical tradition, it may help promote our understanding and knowledge of the psychology of men in our era.


 CONFLICT OF INTERESTS

The authors have not declared any conflict of interests.



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