Men, masculinity, and breakups: Resisting the tyranny of “moving on”

Tova Hartman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


This article examines heterosexual men's experience of negotiating through hegemonic masculinity after a partner-initiated breakup. The men in the study learned to navigate the relational demands of the norms of masculinity in a variety of ways, using strategies along a spectrum between resistance and accommodation. Many of the men described their breakup in terms not merely of one psychological trauma but of two: the acute personal psychic and emotional blow of the breakup, followed by the emerging realization that their social status as men had been undermined. This article finds that a majority of the men demonstrated some degree of resistance to socially imposed definitions of their subjective experience concerning what their breakup “should” mean to them.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)953-969
Number of pages17
JournalPersonal Relationships
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 2017
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2017 IARR


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