A hard-hitting look at the persistent inequities in women's sports participation.
In the past, when sport simply excluded girls, the equation of males with active athletic power and of females with weakness and passivity seemed to come easily, almost naturally. Now, however, with girls' and women's dramatic movement into sport, the process of exclusion has become a bit subtler, a bit more complicated-and yet, as Michael Messner shows us in this provocative book, no less effective. In Taking the Field, Messner argues that despite profound changes, the world of sport largely retains and continues its longtime conservative role in gender relations.
To explore the current paradoxes of gender in sport, Messner identifies and investigates three levels at which the "center" of sport is constructed: the day-to-day practices of sport participants, the structured rules and hierarchies of sport institutions, and the dominant symbols and belief systems transmitted by the major sports media. Using these insights, he analyzes a moment of gender construction in the lives of four- and five-year-old children at a soccer opening ceremony, the way men's violence is expressed through sport, the interplay of financial interests and dominant men's investment in maintaining the status quo in the face of recent challenges, and the cultural imagery at the core of sport, particularly televised sports. Through these examinations Messner lays bare the practices and ideas that buttress-as well as those that seek to disrupt-the masculine center of sport.
Taking the Field exposes the subtle and not-so-subtle ways in which men and women collectively construct gender through their interactions-interactions contextualized in the institutions and symbols of sport.
"For many years, Michael Messner has provided unparalleled insights into gender issues in the arena of sport. With Taking the Field he opens our eyes and ears to how much work still lies ahead before girls and women truly take the field with equal societal approval as boys and men. We're thirty years beyond the passing of Title IX, but when you read Taking the Field, you realize we're not yet where we want to be." --Diana Nyad
Michael A. Messner is professor of sociology and gender studies at the University of Southern California. His previous books include Power at Play: Sports and the Problem of Masculinity (1995) and Politics of Masculinities: Men in Movements (1997).
Few areas of study offer more insight into American culture than competitive sports. The games played throughout this nation's history dramatically illuminate social, economic, and cultural developments, from the balance of power in world affairs to changing conceptions of race, gender, and sexuality. Teaching U.S. History through Sports provides strategies for incorporating sports into any U.S. history curriculum. Drawing upon their own classroom experiences, the authors suggest creative ways to use sports as a lens to examine a broad range of historical subjects, including Puritan culture, the rise of Jim Crow, the Cold War, the civil rights movement, and the women's movement. Essays focus on the experiences of African American women, working-class southerners, Latinos, and members of LGBTQ communities, as well as topics including the controversy over Native American mascots and the globalization of U.S. sports.
Incidents of doping in sports are common in news headlines, despite regulatory efforts. How did doping become a crisis? What does a doping violation actually entail? Who gets punished for breaking the rules of fair play? In Testing for Athlete Citizenship, Kathryn E. Henne, a former competitive athlete and an expert in the law and science of anti-doping regulations, examines the development of rules aimed at controlling performance enhancement in international sports.
As international and celebrated figures, athletes are powerful symbols, yet few spectators realize that a global regulatory network is in place in an attempt to ensure ideals of fair play. The athletes caught and punished for doping are not always the ones using performance-enhancing drugs to cheat. In the case of female athletes, violations of fair play can stem from their inherent biological traits. Combining historical and ethnographic approaches, Testing for Athlete Citizenship offers a compelling account of the origins and expansion of anti-doping regulation and gender-verification rules.
Drawing on research conducted in Australasia, Europe, and North America, Henne provides a detailed account of how race, gender, class, and postcolonial formations of power shape these ideas and regulatory practices. Testing for Athlete Citizenship makes a convincing case to rethink the power of regulation in sports and how it separates athletes as a distinct class of citizens subject to a unique set of rules because of their physical attributes and abilities.
When it comes to sports, Texas more than earns its bragging rights. The Lone Star State has produced championship teams and legendary athletes not only in football, baseball, and basketball, but in dozens of other sports as well. Texas Sports celebrates more than a century of achievements in a day-by-day record of the people and events—both unforgettable and little-known—that have made Texas a powerhouse in the world of sports.
Chad S. Conine packs a wealth of sports facts and stories into 366 days. He ranges from firsts such as UT’s first football game (an 1893 win against Dallas University Football Club) to peak moments such as Earl Campbell running through defenders, Nolan Ryan throwing heat past baffled batters, and Babe Didrickson Zaharias winning the Western Open golf championship for the fourth time. Conine covers more than twenty-five sports and all levels from high school to professional, reminding us that if Texas had never seen a pigskin or a backboard, its sports legacy would still be secure. With a winning combination of victories and heartbreaks, men’s and women’s sports, and all regions of the state, Texas Sports is a must-read for all sports fans and trivia buffs.
In That’s Gotta Hurt, the orthopaedist David Geier shows how sports medicine has had a greater impact on the sports we watch and play than any technique or concept in coaching or training. Injuries among professional and college athletes have forced orthopaedic surgeons and other healthcare providers to develop new surgeries, treatments, rehabilitation techniques, and prevention strategies. In response to these injuries, sports themselves have radically changed their rules, mandated new equipment, and adopted new procedures to protect their players. Parents now openly question the safety of these sports for their children and look for ways to prevent the injuries they see among the pros. The influence that sports medicine has had in effecting those changes and improving both the performance and the health of the athletes has been remarkable. Through the stories of a dozen athletes whose injuries and recovery advanced the field (including Joan Benoit, Michael Jordan, Brandi Chastain, and Tommy John), Dr. Geier explains how sports medicine makes sports safer for the pros, amateurs, student-athletes, and weekend warriors alike. That’s Gotta Hurt is a fascinating and important book for all athletes, coaches, and sports fans.
Thomas Hauser is best known as Muhammad Ali's biographer and for his recording of the contemporary boxing scene. Booklist called Hauser "the most respected boxing journalist working today and perhaps the best ever." Robert Lipsyte said Hauser is "the best boxing writer of our time." Still, Hauser's love of sports began not with boxing but with baseball. Long before he turned to the sweet science, America's national pastime had captured his heart. His childhood allegiance was to the New York Yankees. Growing up in the suburbs of New York, he cheered for the Giants in football and Knicks in basketball. In college, the often-hapless Columbia Lions became his cause. Thomas Hauser on Sports brings together Hauser's articles on sports other than boxing. It combines personal memories with issue-oriented commentary and an intimate look at some of the most remarkable athletes of modern times. Hauser has dealt one-on-one with Ted Williams, Mickey Mantle, Arnold Palmer, Pete Rose, Arthur Ashe, Wilt Chamberlain, and other giants of sports. He has crossed swords with the likes of Marvin Miller and Howard Cosell. Thomas Hauser on Sports is a remarkable journey that begins in the days of Hauser's youth and follows the games we play into the era of steroids and multi-billion-dollar television contracts.
The Carlisle Indian School and the Haskell Institute in Kansas were among the many federally operated boarding schools enacting the U.S. government's education policy toward Native Americans from the late nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century, one designed to remove children from familiar surroundings and impose mainstream American culture on them. To Show What an Indian Can Do explores the history of sports programs at these institutions and, drawing on the recollections of former students, describes the importance of competitive sports in their lives. Author John Bloom focuses on the male and female students who did not typically go on to greater athletic glory but who found in sports something otherwise denied them by the boarding school program: a sense of community, accomplishment, and dignity.
Competing in the 1986 National College Games of the People's Republic of China, Susan Brownell earned both a gold medal in the heptathlon and fame throughout China as "the American girl who won glory for Beijing University." Now an anthropologist, Brownell draws on her direct experience of Chinese athletics in this fascinating look at the culture of sports and the body in China.
Training the Body for China is the first book on Chinese sports based on extended fieldwork by a Westerner. Brownell introduces the notion of "body culture" to analyze Olympic sports as one element in a whole set of Chinese body practices: the "old people's disco dancing" craze, the new popularity of bodybuilding (following reluctant official acceptance of the bikini), mass calisthenics, martial arts, military discipline, and more.
Translating official and dissident materials into English for the first time and drawing on performance theory and histories of the body, Brownell uses the culture of the body as a focal point to explore the tensions between local and global organizations, the traditional and the modern, men and women. Her intimate knowledge of Chinese social and cultural life and her wide range of historic examples make Training the Body for China a unique illustration of how gender, the body, and the nation are interlinked in Chinese culture.
Based on ethnographic research in Seoul and Los Angeles, Transnational Sport tells how sports shape experiences of global Koreanness, and how those experiences are affected by national cultures. Rachael Miyung Joo focuses on superstar Korean athletes and sporting events produced for transnational media consumption. She explains how Korean athletes who achieve success on the world stage represent a powerful, globalized Korea for Koreans within the country and those in the diaspora. Celebrity Korean women athletes are highly visible in the Ladies Professional Golf Association. In the media, these young golfers are represented as daughters to be protected within the patriarchal Korean family and as hypersexualized Asian women with commercial appeal. Meanwhile, the hard-muscled bodies of male athletes, such as Korean baseball and soccer players, symbolize Korean masculine dominance in the global capitalist arena. Turning from particular athletes to a mega-event, Joo discusses the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan, a watershed moment in recent Korean history. New ideas of global Koreanness coalesced around this momentous event. Women and youth assumed newly prominent roles in Korean culture, and, Joo suggests, new models of public culture emerged as thousands of individuals were joined by a shared purpose.
The histories in Twin Cities Sports are rooted in the class, ethnic, and regional identity of this unique upper midwestern metropolitan area. The compilation includes a wide range of important studies on the hub of interwar speedskating, the success of Gopher football in the Jim Crow era, the integration of municipal golf courses, the building of a world-renowned park system, the Minneapolis Lakers’ basketball dynasty, the Minnesota Twins’ connections to Cuba, and more.