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Despite French policies promoting sports for girls in disadvantaged urban neighborhoods, gender inequalities in practice persist in these areas. Based on the sociology of socialization and Connell’s concept of gender regimes, this article proposes to analyze the effects of sports contexts on the (dis)engagement of girls going through the process of joining a club. The data stem from a number of ethnographic investigations (observations; interviews with athletes [girls and boys] aged 11–17, trainers, and parents, n = 42) conducted in three French disadvantaged urban neighborhoods in three different cities over a total of 5 years of field work. All the sports clubs of the neighborhoods studied were investigated. The results reveal that the forms of socialization favored by the club and the trainers of teenagers might structure feminine interrelationships either favorable to girls’ practice (as in gymnastics) or unfavorable, indeed conflictual (as in soccer).
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