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Sue Curry Jansen and Don Sabo

Sport/war metaphors during the Persian Gulf War were crucial rhetorical resources for mobilizing the patriarchal values that construct, mediate, and maintain hegemonic forms of masculinity. Theory is grounded in an analysis of the language used during coverage of the war in electronic and print news media, as well as discourse in the sport industry and sport media. Various usages of the sport/war metaphor are discussed. It is argued that sport/war metaphors reflected and reinforced the multiple systems of domination that rationalized the war and strengthened the ideological hegemony of white Western male elites.

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Sohaila Shakib, Philip Veliz, Michele D. Dunbar and Don Sabo

This study examines sport as a source for youth popularity, and its variation by gender, race/ethnicity, socioeconomic status and grade level, using a nationally representative U.S. sample of 2,185 3rd—12th graders. Results indicate athletes are more likely than nonathletes to report self-perceived popularity equally across gender, socioeconomic status, and grade. Black athletes are less likely to report self-perceived popularity than Whites. When given a choice of popularity criteria, youth chose sport as the most important criterion for male, not female, popularity. Regarding male popularity, sport is chosen over other criteria by middle school youth more than elementary and high school youth. While sport is a status enhancer, there is variation by gender, ethnicity, and grade level.

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Kathleen E. Miller, Grace M. Barnes, Don Sabo, Merrill J. Melnick and Michael P. Farrell

Contrary to popular assumption, adolescent anabolic-androgenic steroid use is not limited to serious male athletes. This paper examines the relationships among gender, athletic participation, and health-related problem behaviors among adolescent steroid users. Regression analyses were performed on a nationally representative sample of over 16,000 high school students (the 1997 Youth Risk Behavior Survey), of whom nearly 500 had used steroids. Compared to nonusers, steroid users were significantly more likely to report substance use, suicidal behavior, and sexual risk-taking; however, patterns of risk behavior varied by the user’s athletic status and gender. After controlling for age, race, ethnicity, and parental education, both athletic participation and female gender were negatively associated with most risk behaviors among users of anabolic steroids.

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Kathleen E. Miller, Merrill J. Melnick, Grace M. Barnes, Michael P. Farrell and Don Sabo

Although previous research has established that high school sports participation might be associated with positive academic outcomes, the parameters of the relationship remain unclear. Using a longitudinal sample of nearly 600 western New York adolescents, this study examined gender- and race-specific differences on the impact of two dimensions of adolescent athletic involvement (“jock” identity and athlete status) on changes in school grades and school misconduct over a 2-year interval. Female and Black adolescents who identified themselves as jocks reported lower grades than did those who did not, whereas female athletes reported higher grades than female nonathletes. Jocks also reported significantly more misconduct (including skipping school, cutting classes, having someone from home called to the school for disciplinary purposes, and being sent to the principal’s office) than did nonjocks. Gender moderated the relationship between athlete status and school misconduct; athletic participation had a less salutary effect on misconduct for girls than for boys.