Emotional and personal costs for men of the Black Saturday bushfires in Victoria, Australia

Debra Parkinson, Claire Zara

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


This chapter presents the research design and a description of the sample. Following this, the men's narratives capture the loss of control they felt on the day of the Black Saturday bushfires and in its long aftermath. This research followed prior women-focused research, which found an increase in domestic violence following Black Saturday. Drinking alcohol is often part of enacting masculinity in Australian society, and becoming emotional is more accepted in men when they are drunk. In Australia, one of the legacies of the horrific Black Saturday fires is a path breaking new Gender and Disaster (GAD) Taskforce, created by Emergency Management Victoria in collaboration with Women's Health Goulburn North East and Monash University Disaster Resilience Initiative. The gender hierarchy depends on the public image of strong men in control and in charge and never more so than in an emergency. This has consequences for all, as noted by Victorian Assistant Police Commissioner, Tim Cartwright.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMen, Masculinities and Disaster
EditorsElaine Enarson, Bob Pease
Place of PublicationAbingdon UK
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9781315678122
ISBN (Print)9781138934177
Publication statusPublished - 2016

Publication series

NameRoutledge Studies in Hazards, Disaster Risk and Climate Change


  • disaster
  • Masculinity
  • gender bias

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