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An ethnographic study exploring the experiences of women who participate in power sports.

Davis, J. C., 2017. An ethnographic study exploring the experiences of women who participate in power sports. Masters Thesis (Masters). Bournemouth University.

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DAVIS, Janine Clare_M.Res._2017.pdf



There is an increasing awareness of the need to understand the experiences of women who are involved in sports that, by perceptions underpinned by traditional gender ideology, are ‘masculine’ in nature. The aim of this study is therefore to explore the experiences of women who currently participate in power sports. To achieve this aim four objectives were set: (1) To explore the motivations for women’s’ involvement in power sports (2) To understand how such involvement challenges the traditional ideology within such a masculine sporting domain, (3) To critically explore the perceived effect of masculine sporting ideologies female in power sports affect the everyday social life of participants and (4) To examine women’s’ experience of prejudice within power sports. An ethnographic approach has been adopted to undertake this research, where participant observation, interviews and an auto-ethnographic account of the researcher’s experiences in the culture of power sports, specifically weightlifting and power lifting, along with experiences in the culture of Thai boxing, were collected to provide rich data. The key findings of the study are that more women are participating in these male dominated sports and are challenging the traditional notions of femininity. The research has shown that women in the study are using power sports to emancipate themselves through challenging the simplistic masculine/feminine dichotomy. The study also highlights that sport is still an arena, however, where ideas about gender and gender difference are still powerfully constituted, expressed and rarely challenged.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Additional Information:If you feel that this work infringes your copyright please contact the BURO Manager.
Uncontrolled Keywords:ethnographic; auto-ethnographic; participant observation; interviews; gender ideology; power sports; weightlifting; power lifting; Thai boxing; women
Group:Bournemouth University Business School
ID Code:29544
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:27 Jul 2017 13:45
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:06


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