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The New Arab ManEmergent Masculinities, Technologies, and Islam in the Middle East$
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Marcia C. Inhorn

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780691148885

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691148885.001.0001

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Reconceiving Middle Eastern Manhood

Reconceiving Middle Eastern Manhood

Chapter:
(p.1) Introduction Reconceiving Middle Eastern Manhood
Source:
The New Arab Man
Author(s):

Marcia C. Inhorn

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691148885.003.0001

This introductory chapter talks about how infertility impedes reproduction among a disproportionate percentage of Middle Eastern men. This epidemic of male infertility—which many men attribute to their unrelenting life stresses, including war—has led to a recalibration of manhood. The notions of a “childless couple” or “child-free living” have yet to enter the cultural lexicon. This phenomenon of happily married but childless Middle Eastern couples is explored from Middle Eastern men's own perspectives. Many men do not want to be perceived as domineering patriarchs; they do not view fatherhood as the be-all and end-all of masculinity; they value conjugal intimacy and privacy, and they often adore their wives as friends and lovers, having learned sexuality together in the context of dual premarital virginity.

Keywords:   Middle Eastern men, infertility, manhood, child-free living, Middle Eastern couples, patriarchs, masculinity, sexuality

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