A Critical, Rhetorical Analysis of Man Therapy: The Use of Humor to Frame Mental Health as Masculine

Richard Mocarski, Sim Butler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

3 Scopus citations


To address high numbers of suicides by men in America, the mental health promotion campaign Man Therapy attempts to destigmatize mental health as staunchly opposed to masculinity through overtly humorous constructions of therapy designed for hegemonically masculine men. Through a critical analysis of the campaign, including the interactive website, modeled as the fictitious office of Dr. Rich Mahogany, this project addresses the influences of humor within the confines of hegemonic masculinity, mental health, and suicide. The goal of the analysis is to better understand, through a critical deconstruction, the ways in which Man Therapy successfully combats stigma in men's mental health, while at the same time, perhaps, reifying hegemonic discourses that have the potential to abject parts of the target audience.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)128-144
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Communication Inquiry
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2016



  • Health promotion
  • Hegemonic masculinity
  • Humor
  • Mental health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cultural Studies
  • Communication
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

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