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This article undertakes a qualitative exploration of women’s and men’s songs in the skydiving community in order to explore the intersection of gender and sexuality in this context. Analyses reveal that men’s songs constrain the transformative potential of women in skydiving by trivializing, marginalizing, and sexualizing them. Further, they reinforce male hegemony in skydiving through the construction of a hyperheterosexual masculinity. Meanwhile, women’s songs resist male hegemony in the sport, laying claim to discursive and physical space. One central strategy in this resistance is the construction of a strong heterosexual femininity, thereby asserting a sexual subjectivity neither defined nor controlled by men. This resistance, however, shores up a particular version of heterosexual femininity that contributes to women’s trivialization and sexualization in this setting.
The author is a PhD candidate in the Department of Sociology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada, T2N 1N4.