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Updated 26 August 2015

Men with poor male gender image may be more violent

A study found that men who weren't overly concerned about appearing to be masculine were the least likely of all men to report violence.

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Men who feel they don't meet traditional masculine ideals may be more prone to violence and risky behaviours, a new study suggests.

Perceptions of male gender

According to the researchers, the findings "suggest that efforts to reduce men's risk of behaviour likely to result in injury should, in part, focus on the means by which masculine socialisation and acceptance of gender norms may induce distress in boys and men."

In the study, 600 American men, aged 18 to 50, took an online survey that asked them about their perceptions of male gender, their own self-image, and their levels of violent and risky behaviours.

Men who considered themselves less masculine than average, and who believed that others viewed them the same way, were more likely to say they had committed violent assaults with a weapon and assaults resulting in injury to the victim.

Compared to men who didn't feel highly masculine but weren't concerned about it, the study authors reported.

The investigators also found that men who felt less masculine and weren't concerned about it were the least likely of all men to report violence or to drive while impaired.

Watch: What men have to say about their masculinity 

The study was conducted by Dr Dennis Reidy, of the U.S. Centres for Disease Control and Prevention's division of violence prevention, and his colleagues. It was published online in the journal Injury Prevention.

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