This article explores the cultural and political history of the men’s shed movement in Australia. This movement blossomed in the two decades after 1996, propelling the development of the community men’s shed model and its widespread expansion across Australian communities. This article situates this movement in the context of broader contests over men’s rights in Australia and suggests that it deserves much closer and critical historical attention. Tracing the claims made about the experience, nature and needs of Australian men by the movement and its supporters, this article argues that a conservative politics of masculinist restoration and rehabilitation underpins what has been framed as a programme of community lead public health. A closer examination of these claims reveals a stubborn and persistent attachment to now undermined forms of settler national legitimacy.
|Journal||Australian Historical Studies|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 2021|