New at Role/Reboot: Matt on Heroism, Masculinity and Elementary School

Matt teaching elementary school in Peru

You think you know fear?

I was only knee-deep in icy seawater, but that was enough. Beside me, a half-dozen anxious Moms formed a loose human chain. We were trying to cordon off a horde of 6-year-olds, cheerfully running amok at the water’s edge. My eyes flicked around the shoreline, trying to keep track of each and every child. I’d been teaching for less than a year and the safety of these happy, heedless kids was my responsibility.

You think you know fear? Try taking a class of 1st graders to the beach.

This week on Role/Reboot, you can see my piece The Man Without Fear: Heroism and Elementary School.

Read more

Matt takes on the modern cowboy in TV’s “Justified”

When I ran workshops for high schoolers at the University of London, I always encouraged the students to discuss gender roles. Whenever possible, I included sessions on Angela Carter, Naomi Wolf’s The Beauty Myth, and the great Leonora Carrington.

Timothy Olyphant and Erica Tazel star in TV's Justified
Two different faces of the US Marshals in Justified

This week, I’ve got a new piece up at the culture and gender site Role/Reboot, discussing the TV show Justified.

In ‘The Marshal and His Women’, I ask if this sharply written show will have a positive impact on definitions of masculinity, or merely perpetuate the same old stereotypes.

You can read my thoughts on Justified at

For more on Angela Carter, see my review of a 2010 youth theatre adaptation of her collection The Bloody Chamber, at