Indigenous Men and Masculinities

Legacies, Identities, Regeneration

Robert Alexander Innes (Editor), Kim Anderson (Editor)

What do we know of masculinities in non-patriarchal societies? Indigenous peoples of the Americas and beyond come from traditions of gender equity, complementarity, and the sacred feminine, concepts that were unimaginable and shocking to Euro-western peoples at contact. Indigenous Men and Masculinities, edited by Kim Anderson and Robert Alexander Innes, brings together prominent thinkers to explore the meaning of masculinities and being a man within such traditions, further examining the colonial disruption and imposition of patriarchy on Indigenous men.

Building on Indigenous knowledge systems, Indigenous feminism, and queer theory, the sixteen essays by scholars and activists from Canada, the U.S., and New Zealand open pathways for the nascent field of Indigenous masculinities. The authors explore subjects of representation through art and literature, as well as Indigenous masculinities in sport, prisons, and gangs.

Indigenous Men and Masculinities highlights voices of Indigenous male writers, traditional knowledge keepers, ex-gang members, war veterans, fathers, youth, two-spirited people, and Indigenous men working to end violence against women. It offers a refreshing vision toward equitable societies that celebrate healthy and diverse masculinities.

Read an Excerpt From:
Brendan Hokowhitu—Taxonomies of Indigeneity
Erin Sutherland—Indigenous Masculinities Explored


  • NOMINEE, Mary Scorer Award for Best Book by a Manitoba Publisher, Manitoba Book Awards (2016)


“Necessary reading for anyone doing work on Indigenous masculinities. It will be a touchstone in this area for some time. “

Jean-Paul Restoule, BC Studies

“The timely text examines the ways colonization attempted to diminish aboriginal beliefs about gender, and as a result, aboriginal traditions and values from around the world. In the midst of our imperative nation-wide discussion about missing and murdered aboriginal women, the book urges us to address how colonization has affected aboriginal men and people of other genders by creating and enforcing a patriarchal society.”

Nadya Domingo, Quill & Quire

Indigenous Men and Masculinities is unique, timely and important and expands the depth and scope of scholarly discourse on Indigenous masculinities by focusing attention on the social, psychological and political issues facing Indigenous men today as they confront colonized conceptions of manhood and the effects of colonialism on them and their communities.”

– Taiaike Alfred, Indigenous Governance, University of Victoria

“What does it mean to be a man in the context of Indigenous culture? How has colonialism shaped notions of masculinity within traditions steeped in gender equality and mutual respect? This insightful collection of essays addresses these crucial questions and more.”

– Melanie Brannagan Frederiksen, Ben MacPhee-Sigurdson, and Dave Reynolds, judges, The Mary Scorer Award for Best Book by a Manitoba Publisher.

“A strong beginning to the work of critical studies of Indigenous masculinities.”

– John Gamber, Columbia University, Transmotion

“The approaches and perspectives that Innes and Anderson have collected here are valuable for scholars, students, and teachers across the humanities and social sciences as they continue the important journey along the road to decolonization.”

– Rob LeBlanc, York University, The Canadian Journal of Native Studies

“We can learn a great deal about the workings of gender and the intersections with colonialism from the examples assembled by Innes and Anderson, and Indigenous Men and Masculinities will extend conversations thoughtfully about Indigenous manhood in the twenty-first century.”

Jean-Paul Restoule, BC Studies

“A major strength of the collection is that these interdisciplinary contributions provide multiple ways of understanding how Indigenous men are trapped within a violent and destructive colonial narrative that makes it difficult to attain balanced and positive lives. This book is a must-read and collectively, these essays help us to conceive of ways that the ideals and social structures that shape Indigenous masculinities can be transformed, individuals can be healed, and positive change can be enacted within communities.”

Yusuf Varachia, Canadian Literature

About the Authors

Robert Alexander Innes is a member of Cowessess First Nation and associate professor in the Indigenous Studies Program and the Department of Political Science at McMaster University. He is the author of Elder Brother and the Law of the People and and co-editor, with Kim Anderson, of Indigenous Men and Masculinities.

Kim Anderson is a Cree/Métis writer, a Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Relationships, and an Associate Professor in the Department of Family Relations and Applied Nutrition at the University of Guelph. She has published six books, including Life Stages and Native Women: Memory, Teachings and Story Medicine and Indigenous Men and Masculinities: Legacies, Identities, Regeneration.

Other contributors: Kim Anderson, Bob Antone, Phillip Borell, Warren Cariou, Daniel Heath Justice, Robert Henry, Brendan Hokowhitu, Robert Alexander Innes, Thomas Ka’auwai Kaulukukui Jr., Lloyd L. Lee, Sam McKegney, Kimberly Minor, Scott L. Morgensen, Allison Piché, William Kahalepuna Richards Jr., Gregory Scofield, Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair, Sasha Sky, Leah Sneider, Erin Sutherland, John Swift, Lisa Tatonetti, Ty P. Kawika Tengan, Richard Van Camp.

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