Accounting researchers and practitioners have made strides in addressing persistent gender inequalities in the accounting profession. However, these efforts have largely sidestepped men and masculinities. Our study considers the role of men and masculinities in gender inequalities by exploring how men in accounting experience paternity leaves. We conduct interviews with 13 men in audit firms in France. We find that fathers are reluctant to take leaves, which they view as vacation periods incompatible with their professional work. They see audit firms as offering less support to fathers than mothers, with support for fathers growing but still marginal. Finally, they experience a variety of emotions, including positive emotions around fatherhood and negative emotions around difficulties in reconciling fatherhood with professional responsibilities and paternity leaves. Practically, our findings imply that to address gender inequalities further, accounting firms need to change the norms around care work, including paternity leaves.

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