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Occupying a Middle Space: Toward a Mestiza Sport Studies

Katherine M. Jamieson

In this paper, the author explores the usefulness of Chicana feminist scholarship for sport studies. Gloria Anzaldua’s concept of mestizaje, Maria Lugones’s concept of coalescence, and Chela Sandoval’s concept of differential consciousness are relied upon to assert the relevance of Chicana scholarship for sport studies. More specifically the paper focuses on the usefulness of such scholarship for identifying the ways that citizen-subjects both align with and resist dominant ideologies in everyday life. Interviews with former and current softball athletes of various Latina/o ethnicities are used to illustrate the occupation of a middle space and the usefulness of a mestiza sport studies.

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Reading Nancy Lopez: Decoding Representations of Race, Class, and Sexuality

Katherine M. Jamieson

As though it were unfolding today, the Lopez story provides a fertile field for analyzing the varied consequences of interlocking inequalities of race, ethnicity, class, and sexuality. Lopez is constructed through the print media as a symbol of assimilation, as well as a body coopted in the project of Latino-Latina pride and social justice. The selected “Lopez texts,” which include Sports Illustrated, Nuestro, and Hispanic magazines, offer powerful and complex examples of the authority of the media to construct and reconstruct the events surrounding Lopez’s career. The purpose of the paper is to apply feminist insights regarding racialized, classed, and sexualized forms of gender to examine the complexity and salience of Nancy Lopez’s presence on the Ladies Professional Golf Association tour.

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The Passion of Tiger Woods: An Anthropologist Reports on Golf, Race, and Celebrity Scandal

Katherine M. Jamieson

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A Farewell to Remember: Interrogating the Nancy Lopez Farewell Tour

Delia D. Douglas and Katherine M. Jamieson

Researchers have illustrated how this post–Civil Rights period is marked by significant changes to the organization and implementation of systems of racial stratification and expressions of racialized hostility. Consonant with the persistence of racial inequality is the notion that “race” is no longer relevant. In this context, we consider print media accounts of Nancy Lopez’s participation in 14 tournaments between June and October 2002. The Lopez Farewell Tour signaled the end of her 26-year career on the Ladies Professional Golf Association tour. We suggest that representations of Lopez are linked to new strategies of racialization that strengthen white racial power and privilege. We argue that the popularity of Nancy Lopez, a light-skinned Latina, was not simply evidence of a move towards color-blindness; rather, it was illustrative of the ways in which discourses of whiteness are communicated through their articulation with formations of gender, social class, and heterosexuality.

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Athletic Fatness: Forgiving Corpulence in Elite Bodies

Katherine M Jamieson, Amy Stringer, and Melissa Blair Andrews

In crafting this analysis of professional golfers John Daly and Laura Davies, we were struck by the contradictions to corporeal rationality that elite, corpulent athletes might enact through their mere presence, as well as through their public ability to compete with idealized athletic bodies. That sport and dominant beliefs about sport contribute to disciplining bodies is not a point of contention for us. It is, however, unclear where the disciplining lines are drawn, and what happens when bodies that resist corporeal rationality refuse to disappear. What are the consequences of/for publicly successful, undisciplined bodies operating instead in a corporeal irrationality? Of course this entire line of questioning suggests fissures in the disciplining systems of corporeal rationality outlined by several scholars (Kirk, 2004; Shilling, 2005). It is to when and where such disciplining systems come unhinged that we aim this analysis of John Daly and Laura Davies.

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Feminist Cultural Studies: Uncertainties and Possibilities

Mary Louise Adams, Michelle T. Helstein, Kyoung-yim Kim, Mary G. McDonald, Judy Davidson, Katherine M. Jamieson, Samantha King, and Geneviéve Rail

This collection of commentaries emerged from ongoing conversations among the contributors about our varied understandings of and desires for the sport studies field. One of our initial concerns was with the absence/presence of feminist thought within sport studies. Despite a rich history of feminist scholarship in sport studies, we have questioned the extent to which feminism is currently being engaged or acknowledged as having shaped the field. Our concerns crystallized during the spirited feminist responses to a fiery roundtable debate on Physical Cultural Studies (PCS) at the annual conference of the North American Society for the Sociology of Sport (NASSS) in New Orleans in November 2012. At that session, one audience member after another spoke to what they saw as the unacknowledged appropriation by PCS proponents of longstanding feminist—and feminist cultural studies—approaches to scholarship and writing. These critiques focused not just on the intellectual moves that PCS scholars claim to be making but on how they are made, with several audience members and some panelists expressing their concerns about the territorializing effects of some strains of PCS discourse.