Michael Messner

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Michael Messner
Born Michael Alan Messner
1952 (age 62–63)
Salinas, California, United States
Alma mater California State University, Chico
University of California, Berkely
Occupation Sociologist, author
Spouse(s) Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo

Michael Alan Messner (born 1952) is an American sociologist. His main areas of research are gender (especially men's studies) and the sociology of sports. He is the author of several books, he gives public speeches and teaches on issues of gender-based violence, the lives of men and boys, and gender and sports.

Since 1987, Messner has worked as a professor of sociology and gender studies at the University of Southern California. He was head of the department, and still retains his dual faculty appointment. He was the president of the Pacific Sociological Association in 2010-2011, and in 2011 the California Women's Law Center presented him with the Pursuit of Justice Award.


Messner was born in Salinas, California.


Messner was educated from kindergarten to his Ph.D. in California's public schools. He has a Bachelor degree in social science and a Master's degree in sociology from California State University, Chico. He obtained a Ph.D. in sociology in 1985 from the University of California, Berkeley with a dissertation titled Masculinity and Sports: An Exploration of the Changing Meaning of Male Identity in the Lifecourse of the Athlete.

In the late 1970s, he started to deal with feminist theory and the construction of gender. He took part in one of the first ever classes about men and masculinity in the USA, held by Bob Blauner in Berkeley.

Personal life[edit]

Messner lives in South Pasadena with his wife, Pierrette Hondagneu-Sotelo (a sociologist and author). They have two sons, named Miles and Sasha.


Comments regarding "fight clubs"[edit]

In an article about a "fight club" in Menlo Park, California, Messner remarked that men involved in them "often carry bottled-up violent impulses learned in childhood from video games, cartoons and movies. [...] Boys have these warrior fantasies picked up from popular culture, and schools sort of force that out of them." In these fantasies: "The good guys always resort to violence, and they always get the glory and the women."[1]

Works (selection)[edit]



See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jordon Robertson (29 May 2006). "The first rule of Silicon Valley fight club is...". MSNBC. AP. Retrieved 16 February 2011. 

External links[edit]