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Lee Sigelman

The use of American Indian team names, mascots, and symbols has stirred considerable controversy over the last decade. This paper focuses on public attitudes toward the most frequently objected-to team name, the Redskins, Washington, DC’s professional football team. Data from 2 surveys, one local and the other national, establish that very few members of the general public see any need to change Redskins to another name. Support for a name change is significantly higher among racial or ethnic minorities; the more highly educated; and those who are not fans of professional football in general or the Washington team in particular. However, even in those parts of the public, support is far outweighed by opposition. These findings stand in stark contrast to the idea that Americans now routinely disassociate themselves from ideas and stereotypes that might convey the impression that they are racially insensitive.

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Marni Brown, Erin Ruel and Stephanie Medley-Rath

In light of the increasing participation of girls/women in sport, we investigate the attitudes of high school boys and girls toward potential increased opportunities for girls’ to participate in sport. There has been little research on high school students’ attitudes toward girls’ sport participation decomposed by gender and athletic status. We find that, on average, high school students are supportive of increased opportunities for girls to participate in sport. Girls are more supportive than boys on average. While there is no difference among girls by athletic status, male competitive athletes show the most negative attitudes toward opportunities for girls to participate in sport compared with male noncompetitive athletes. Lastly, racial minority groups express positive attitudes toward increased opportunities for girls to participate in sport compared with whites.

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Donald Chu and David Griffey

The contact theory of racial integration is examined in this survey of the behaviors and attitudes of secondary school students and student-athletes. Self-report questionnaires were completed by 1,082 subjects in the urban upstate New York area. Subjects were evaluated on two behavioral (race of students talked to, race of students phoned) and three attitudinal (like more friends of other races, choose interracial school, or races smarter than others) dependent variables. Dependent measures were evaluated relative to their correlations with a number of independent variables (athlete/nonathlete, individual or cooperative sport played, sport experience, won-lost record, exposure to minorities, sex, social status). Results of the study argue for consideration of the contact theory’s applicability to the sport situation.

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Helene Joncheray, Fabrice Burlot, Nicolas Besombes, Sébastien Dalgalarrondo and Mathilde Desenfant

This article presents the performance factors identified by Olympic athletes and analyzes how they were prioritized and implemented during the 2012–2016 Olympiad. To address this issue, 28 semistructured interviews were conducted with French athletes who participated in the Olympic Games in 2016. The analysis shows that to achieve performance, only two factors were implemented by all the athletes: training and physical preparation. The other factors, namely, mental preparation, nutrition, and recovery care, were not implemented by all athletes. In addition, two main types of configurations have been identified: a minority of athletes (n = 4) for whom the choice of performance factors and their implementation are controlled by the coach and a majority (n = 24) who adopts secondary adjustments by relying on a parallel network.

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Daniel Burdsey

This article investigates the presence and effects of racial microaggressions in English first-class cricket. Drawing on interview data with British Asian players, it not only highlights players’ experiences of racism, but also identifies their tendency to downplay the repercussions of some of the forms that this prejudice takes. The analysis demonstrates that color-blind ideology is so entrenched in contemporary Western sport that its reproduction is not exclusively the preserve of white groups; it can also at times compel minority ethnic participants to endorse dominant claims that the effects of racism are overstated as well. As a consequence they are often pressured into denying or downplaying those forms of verbal discrimination which are articulated between team-mates and in a seemingly playful manner, dismissing incidents as merely “banter” or “jokes”.

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Patrick Peretti-Watel, Valérie Guagliardo, Pierre Verger, Patrick Mignon, Jacques Pruvost and Yolande Obadia

This study examined attitudes toward doping among 458 French elite student-athletes (ESAs) ages 16–24, their correlates, and their relationship with cigarette, alcohol, and cannabis use. We found a consensus among ESAs concerning negative aspects of doping. A cluster analysis showed, however, that statements dealing with benefits of doping were endorsed by two significant minorities of respondents. These ESAs were more frequently older males with a lower parental academic achievement and no sporting history in their family. Recreational drug use depended on whether or not ESAs endorsed statements related to nonsporting benefits of doping. Using an analytical framework from the sociology of deviance, our findings suggest that athletes who dope themselves pursue legitimate goals with illegitimate means but justify their behavior with a legitimate rationale. Further research is needed on the nonrecreational use of recreational drugs.

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Moshe Semyonov

This paper challenges the popular argument that sport is an effective channel for upward mobility, especially for ethnic minorities. My study of retired professional soccer players in Israel establishes the following findings: First, members of the subordinate ethnic group are disadvantaged in attainment of status not only in schools and labor markets but also in and via sport. Second, a professional career in sport does not intervene between background variables and later occupational attainment. Third, both ethnicity and educational level are the most significant determinants of postretirement occupational attainment; higher education and higher ethnic status improve opportunities for later occupational success. On the basis of these findings it is suggested that the same rules of inequality that push individuals to seek alternative routes of mobility, such as professional sport, continue to operate in and beyond sport.

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Claudine Sherrill

The underrepresentation of women in the Paralympics movement warrants attention as the world prepares for Atlanta 1996, when Paralympics (conducted after the Summer Olympics) will attract approximately 3,500 athletes with physical disability or visual impairment from 102 countries. Barriers that confront women with disability, the Paralympic movement, and adapted physical activity as a profession and scholarly discipline that stresses advocacy and attitude theories are presented. Two theories (reasoned action and contact) that have been tested in various contexts are woven together as an approach particularly applicable to women in sport and feminists who care about equal access to opportunity for all women. Women with disability are a social minority that is both ignored and oppressed. Sport and feminist theory and action should include disability along with gender, race/ethnicity, class, and age as concerns and issues.

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Rebecca E. Hasson

activity levels among ethnic-minority youth are not maintained throughout adolescence and into adulthood ( USDHHS , 2008 ). African American and Latino adults report significantly lower levels of physical activity participation than White adults ( USDHHS , 2008 ). Hence, there is a critical need to

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Robert Chappell, Daniel Burdsey and Kate Collinson

The main purpose of this study was to investigate the ‘race’ and ethnicity of female netball players in the First and Second Division of the English National Netball League during the 1999/2000 season. The secondary purpose was to compare the ethnicity of players to playing position. Consequently, this research will contribute to a better understanding of female ethnic participation in English netball, and also provide data that will facilitate a comparative analysis of participation rates by ethnic minorities in other sports in England, and with similar research on ethnicity in other countries. Data were collated from team rosters of all teams comprising the First and Second Divisions of the English National Netball League in the 1999/2000 season. The research was conducted over a season, in order to observe all of the teams, and to note the position of each player in the team. The ‘race’ and ethnicity of players (̲N = 150) was established from individual players by administering a self-definition questionnaire at the end of each observed match.