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Lars Dzikus, Allison B. Smith and Jonathan Evans

Scholars have contested the use of Lady in team nicknames since the 1980s, as the practice might suggest otherness and inferiority (Eitzen & Zinn, 1989). This study is set in the context of the 2012 merger of the women’s athletic departments at the University of Tennessee and the 2014 announcement that the university would eliminate the Lady Vols brand for all sports but women’s basketball. The latter decision has been met with resistance and applause from various parties. Using textual analysis of voices of athletes and comparing and contrasting them with perspectives of scholars, this study suggests a reading of Lady and Lady Vols as polysemic text with coexisting and competing cultural interpretations.

Les universitaires ont contesté l’utilisation du terme Lady dans les surnoms des équipes dès les années 80, étant donné que cette pratique pouvait suggérer l’altérité et l’infériorité (Eitzen & Zinn, 1989). Cette étude s’inscrit dans le contexte de la fusion des départements sportifs de l’Université du Tennessee en 2012 et de l’annonce faite en 2014 que l’université supprimerait la marque Lady Vols, hormis pour le basket féminin. Cette décision a rencontré des résistances et des applaudissements de la part de différentes parties. En se basant sur une analyse textuelle des positions prises par des athlètes et en les comparant et les contrastant avec les perspectives d’universitaires, cette étude suggère une lecture des termes Lady et Lady Vols comme un texte polysémique avec la coexistence d’interprétations culturelles concurrentes.

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Allison B. Smith, Natalie M. Welch and Robin Hardin

Sexual harassment and sexism in the workplace is the unwanted sexual attention and discrimination based on sex or gender of employees by their colleagues or superiors. Male-dominated organizations and professions have been found to possess cultures susceptible to high rates of sexual harassment and sexism. In addition, these organizations and professions become more accepting of this type of behavior the longer the culture permits it. In male-dominated industries such as sport, female employees may even come to expect and accept this type of behavior as “part of the job.” Utilizing Institutional Theory, this study explored the experiences of sexual harassment and sexism from colleagues and superiors in a group of 14 female sport management faculty members within the United States. All participants reported experiencing some form of sexual harassment or sexism during their time as a graduate student or faculty member. Surprisingly, this harassment and sexism came from both men and women. The most common form of harassment or sexism was subtle sexism; however, several participants indicated aggressive harassment or sexism that resulted in needing medication, hospitalization, or therapy.

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Allison B. Smith, Cheryl R. Rode and Robin Hardin

Contrapower harassment occurs when a person in a position of authority (e.g., faculty member) experiences incivility or sexual harassment from a subordinate (e.g., student). Sport has long been considered a male domain, and this is true in the sport management academic setting as well. This creates an environment where contrapower harassment can occur. This research examined the prevalence of contrapower harassment in the sport management classroom as well as strategies to negotiate it if it occurs. A questionnaire was completed by 179 female faculty members teaching in the sport management field. More than half of the respondents indicated they were treated differently because of their gender, and more than 80% indicated they had faced incidents of incivility in the classroom. Respondents indicated they negotiated the instances by attempting to make the incident a teaching tool and by immediately addressing the instance. Contrapower harassment is prevalent in the sport management classroom, and faculty need to address the issue so the behaviors will not carry over into the professional work environment.

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Elizabeth A. Taylor, Jessica L. Siegele, Allison B. Smith and Robin Hardin

Women’s participation in collegiate sport has increased dramatically since the passage of Title IX, but there has not been a corresponding increase in the percentage of women in administrative positions. Women have, however, been successful obtaining leadership positions in conference offices, as more than 30% of National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I conference commissioners were women in 2016. This research used career construction theory as a framework to explore the experiences of these women. Findings revealed that participants constantly negotiate time spent on personal and professional obligations, and relationships created in the workplace turned into organic mentorship relationships. Participants felt that there were limited amounts of sexism in the workplace, but all discussed experiencing instances of sexism, indicating a culture of gender normalcy. Women may experience increased success in leadership positions at conference offices, compared with on-campus athletic departments, due to limited direct interaction with football and donors.