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Peter Kaufman and Fred Mason

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Fred Mason and Geneviève Rail

Newspaper photographs of athletes at the 1999 Pan-American Games from five Canadian newspapers were analyzed for sexual differences in amount and content. Improvements in media coverage were noted over earlier studies. The percentage of photographs of women athletes was very close to that of men, and bettered their participation rate. There was also little difference in the camera angles used or in the activity level of the athletes pictured. However, sexual differences were still created in very subtle ways. Photographs of men were more likely to appear in prominent locations in the newspaper. Women in some stereotypically “male-appropriate” sports received coverage that brought them back into line with feminine ideals and mitigated their “gender transgressions.” Results suggest that women in the sports media are receiving greater amount of coverage, but the media still maintains practices that subtly create and naturalize sexual differences and set particular sports off as appropriate only for men.

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Eric Anderson, Daniel Bloyce, Audrey R. Giles, James W. Martens, Fred Mason, Theresa A. Walton and Joel Nathan Rosen