This thesis explores the paradox of profeminism through a case study of a profeminist men's group, the Brisbane based Men Against Sexual Assault (MASA). A men's profeminist politics is simultaneously a 'feminist' politics and a masculinity politics, held in tension between the two by its necessary relation to both. The study questions how this politics has been possible. Theoretical work in this area is unsatisfying in resolving the issues, and there has been little or no empirical work conducted in Australia to date.
A 'grounded theory' approach is taken to the research, utilising life history interviews with eight of the MASA members, interviews with feminist women, a special MASA focus group session and analysis of archival material.
This study locates MASA as the unique product of an historical moment and demonstrates how MASA's politics was articulated as 'men's business': partly a politics of identity and partly a politics of personal change grounded in the men's own experience of patriarchal culture. The study problematises existing theoretical work on profeminism, offers an informed assessment of the possibilities and limitations of a future profeminist politics, and provides a significant body of data for future research in the field.