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This study of a schoolgirl Australian Rules football team uses life-history research to provide unusual insights into the gendered embodiment of female footballers. Focusing on the familial relations of players, the article looks at sport in the wider context of gender, showing complexities often overlooked. While documenting different patterns of female embodiment, the study examines whether the provision of full-contact sports is “schooling the bodies” of these young women in alternative forms of embodiment to those described by Young (1998) in “Throwing Like a Girl.” Specifically, this article addresses why the girls play football, whether they are consciously resisting male domination, whether playing football teaches them a different gendered embodiment, and how the girls deal with gender contradictions that arise from playing football.
The author is with the University of Sydney, Dept. of Education and Social Work, Building A35, Sydney NSW 2006, Australia