“Track’s Coed, I Never Thought of It as Separate”: Challenging, Reproducing, and Negotiating Gender Stereotypes in Track and Field

in Sociology of Sport Journal
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In contrast to the sex-segregated model that dominates sport and contributes to its tradition of hegemonic masculinity, collegiate track and field typically follows a sex-integrated structure whereby men and women train, travel, and compete together. In this article, the authors examined how six collegiate male track-and-field athletes who are part of a sex-integrated team navigate gendered norms and hierarchies with a particular focus on their understandings of gender(ed) performance and abilities. Grounded in a feminist poststructuralist framework, the authors’ analysis found that although the participants were accepting of a sex-integrated training environment and challenged some gender stereotypes and instances of sexism, they simultaneously reified these same gender stereotypes by characterizing women athletes as “emotional” or “less competitive” and advocated individual solutions to institutional sexism.

The authors are with the University of Maryland, College Park, MD, USA.

Posbergh (posbergh@umd.edu) is corresponding author.
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