Boys Will Be Boys, and Other Myths: Unravelling Biblical Masculinities

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Throughout history, we have exalted and theologised about men like Adam or David to the point where we have become oblivious to the fact that they are far from perfect role models for Christian manhood. Failing to read scripture properly, we have used it to shape a distorted understanding of masculinity. 

Stretching from issues of violence, emotional and sexual abuse, the desire for power, homophobia, and the suppression of emotions, Will Moore draws from scholarship, personal stories, and popular culture to offer an honest and accessible insight into the toxic myths which frame how we read scripture. Only when we expose these myths, he argues, can we start to see the authentic men staring straight back at us from the pages of our bibles, and be able to reshape the way in which we produce Christian men today, tackling the violence that is being done by men to themselves and others.   

Will Moore is currently training for priesthood in the Church of England at Westcott House in Cambridge, undertaking study and research within the Cambridge Theological Federation. Prior to this, he studied for degrees in theology and biblical studies at Cardiff University.


“The cult of masculinity in certain parts of the global church has resulted in much personal, familial and structural harm. Will Moore is one of the important voices in the emerging generation of British pastor theologians. For both of these reasons, the argument he presents in this his first book, Boys Will Be Boys, deserves careful attention and a wide audience.” — Helen Paynter, Director of the Centre for the Study of Bible and Violence, Bristol.

“In this open, accessible book, Will Moore aims to shed light on the ways in which portrayals of men in the Bible have fed into accounts of masculinity in present-day church and society. Rich with examples from contemporary media and recent events, the book does not assume familiarity with scholarly literature in either biblical studies or critical masculinity studies, and will thus be of service to readers newer to these areas. Moore’s self-reflexive openness to change and challenge invites the same of those who read his work.” — Susannah Cornwall, Professor of Constructive Theologies, University of Exeter.

“This is a deeply personal and honest piece of theological work engaging with voices from the Hebrew Prophets to Womanist Scholars, to Christian Rappers such as Guvna B! What Will Moore has done with success is draw our attention to masculinity, and it is this attention that is the beginning of what will set men, and all people free. Calling us to be attentive to our own complicity in violence and power, our reluctance to intimacy, gentleness and openness as men, Will Moore enables us to plumb the depths of masculinity, and to do so with an attentiveness both to ourselves and to our God. A much needed piece of writing!” — Jarel Robinson-Brown, Author of Black, Gay, British, Christian, Queer: The Church and the Famine of Grace

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