The Tipping Point: The Intersection of Race, Gender, and Sexual Orientation in Intercollegiate Sports

in Journal of Sport Management
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  • 1 University of Massachusetts—Amherst
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To date, sport research on sexuality has primarily focused on White lesbian, bisexual, and gay (LBG) persons or heterosexual racial minorities; few studies have provided meaningful insight into how sexual prejudice affects racial minorities. Thus, the purpose of the current study is to explore the intersection of race, sexual orientation, and gender in the context of collegiate sport and examine the influence of multiple marginalized identities on organizational outcomes. Grounded in intersectionality literature and feminist standpoint theory, semistructured interviews were conducted with 15 current and former intercollegiate sport employees. Results revealed four higher order themes: (a) racially influenced experiences, (b) managing lesbian-ness, (c) organizational climate, and (d) organizational outcomes. This research expands the theoretical knowledge of intersectionality, introduces a turnover intention tipping point phenomenon, and provides mangers with firsthand feedback on current policy and norms that may decrease satisfaction.

Nefertiti A. Walker and E. Nicole Melton are with the McCormack Department of Sport Management, Isenberg School of Management, University of Massachusetts—Amherst, Amherst, Massachusetts.

Address author correspondence to Nefertiti A. Walker at
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