Views of Māori and Pasifika men involved with gangs and the criminal justice system on masculinity : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Science in Psychology, Massey University, New Zealand

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New Zealand has one of the largest gang populations in the world per capita, and Māori and Pasifika men are overrepresented in the criminal justice system and prison population, with high recidivism rates. Research internationally on masculinity tends to be from a hegemonic Western perspective. Although there is research on international gang and prison populations, and on masculinity of Māori and Pasifika men in New Zealand separately, there is a lack of research on Māori and Pasifika gang members’ views on masculinity. This research looked to fill the gap in the current research by looking into whether these men’s views on masculinity and how and where they learnt it, contributed to their gang and criminal justice system involvement. Constructivist Grounded Theory Methodology was used to conduct semi-structured interviews. Eight Māori and Pasifika men were interviewed to find out their views on masculinity; what it means to them to be a man; how and where they learned these views; how being in a gang and prison influenced their masculine ideals; what their views on masculinity are now; and what they would teach future generations about being a man. Several themes and subthemes emerged from the data. These included: Views on masculinity before and during gang involvement; the influence of role models; reasons for joining a gang; masculinity within gangs; ethnic culture and masculinity; the influence of the criminal justice system; catalysts for change; toward a better future. The themes were discussed in view of the literature; limitations of this research are acknowledged; and recommendations for future research are outlined. This research found that Māori and Pasifika men’s views on masculinity did contribute to their decision to join a gang and their subsequent criminal justice system involvement.