Selling Girls Short: Advertising and Gender Images in Sports Illustrated for Kids

in Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal
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  • 1 Florida State University Department of Physical Education Tallahassee, Florida 32306-3045
  • 2 State University of West Georgia Carrollton, GA 30116
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The purpose of this study is to ascertain how, if at all, advertising images in Sports Illustrated for Kids (SIK) changed following the 1996 Olympic Games, from late 1996 through 1999. Advertising photographs in 36 issues of SIK, from July 1996 to June 1999 were examined using content analysis methodology. A recording instrument was generated to analyze SIK advertising photographs. SPSS Statistical Package 9.0 was used to analyze the nominal data. Simple descriptive statistics, crosstabs, and frequency distributions were used for determining the presence of an association between gender and the remaining variables. Findings from this content analysis of SIK advertising were comparable with those of Cuneen and Sidwell’s (1998) analysis of SIK advertisement photographs. A clear pattern of differential photographic treatment of gender was noted throughout the analysis. Although there have been some improvements, a majority of the stereotypical relationships between gender and sport that the previous researchers found have continued in SIK photographs, even when cultural acceptance and expectations of women in sport have evolved toward equity.

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