The SSJ has recently published commentaries by Laberge and Girardin (1992) and McAll (1992), on our analyses of sport practices among Anglophone and Francophone Canadians, that obscure more than they clarify. The comments contain problems of misunderstanding and misrepresentations and put forward a nonviable theoretical interpretation of Francophone/Anglophone differences in leisure sport participation. They also recommend a problematic research strategy for the area of study. We briefly spell out some of the problems involved in the two sets of comments. We also present additional data for the late 1980s that further call into question the commentators’ interpretation.
James E. Curtis and Philip G. White
Alain P. Gauthier, Michel Lariviere and Nancy Young
The International Physical Activity Questionnaire (IPAQ) has received significant attention since the late 1990s. As it currently stands, its long version has been translated in English, German, Icelandic, Korean, Polish, Spanish, Turkish, and Vietnamese. However no data originating from the self-administered long version (last 7 days) of the IPAQ (IPAQ-SALV) is available for French Canadians. This study developed a self-administered long version (last 7 days) of the IPAQ in Canadian French (IPAQ-SALVCF) and assessed its psychometric properties.
The original IPAQ-SALV was linguistically translated, back-translated, and then reviewed in a focus group to ensure its meaning had been retained. Data were collected on a sample of 34 Francophones from Northern Ontario, and the results compared with step counts assessed by 7-day pedometer recording. Test-retest reliability was examined with a 24-hour delay between questionnaire completion on day 8 and day 9 of the protocol. Convergent validity was assessed by comparing IPAQ-SALVCF (last 7 days) results to average step counts over a 7-day period.
Intra-class correlation coefficients (ICC) revealed that the IPAQ-SALVCF results were stable between days. The ICC for total activity scores was highest at 0.93 (CI: 0.86 to 0.97). Total activity scores were also significantly related to pedometer step counts (Pearson r = .66 P < .01). These results confirm those obtained in prior research
The IPAQ-SALVCF is a reliable and valid measure of physical activity for French Canadians.
Alain P. Gauthier, Michel Lariviere, Raymond Pong, Susan Snelling and Nancy Young
Researchers have recently expressed their concern for the health of Francophones and rural dwellers in Canada. Their levels of physical activity may explain part of the observed differences. However, little is known about the physical activity levels of these 2 groups. The purpose of this study was to assess levels of physical activity among a sample of Francophones and rural dwellers. The study also assessed the associations of various types of physical activity to measures of health status.
A quota-based convenience sample of 256 adults from Northern Ontario was surveyed using the IPAQ and the SF-12.
There were no significant differences in activity levels between language groups (P = .06) or geographical groups (P = .22) on the combined dependent variables based on MANOVA. Leisure-time physical activity scores were consistently associated to better physical component summary scores of the SF-12.
Implications for practice include that leisure-time physical activities have been at the forefront of public health promotion, and our findings support this approach. Further, population specific interventions are indeed important, however, within this Canadian context when identifying target groups one must look beyond sociocultural status or geographical location.
Philip G. White and James E. Curtis
Multivariate analyses are presented showing, for the mid-1970s, the comparative propensities of Canadian anglophones and francophones to participate in forms of competitive sport and sport outside the family. Presented are data consistent with the values-differences perspective, which holds that there are differences in orientation toward achievement and the family across the Canadian linguistic groups. The analyses focus on a test of a specification of the values-differences thesis—the school-socialization interpretation, which holds that sport involvement patterns result in part because of differences in how competitive sport is organized in the schools in French Canada versus English Canada. It was found that differences in competitive sport participation were smaller after controls for respondents’ experience with sport during the school years. However, there remained significant francophone/anglophone differences in orientation to competitive and extra-family sport after controls for the effects of school experience and other social background factors.
This paper questions both the validity of the “value-differences thesis” put forward by White and Curtis as an explanation for differences in sport participation on the part of Canadian Anglophones and Francophones, and the inference of these authors that such hypothetical value-differences may better explain historical and contemporary inequalities between the two language groups than the alternative “conquest and discrimination” model. It is suggested that White and Curtis’ argument only stands up insofar as the discrimination model is not thoroughly discussed and tested. In particular the central role played by sports as a site in which social inequalities are structured and reinforced is not adequately taken into account by these authors.
Barbara Ravel and Geneviéve Rail
Several studies on the experiences of nonheterosexual women in sport have highlighted the development of lesbian subcultures in sport, while others have emphasized the scarcity of athletic contexts embracing sexual diversity. This article explores the narratives of 14 young Francophone sportswomen positioning themselves as “gaie,” lesbian, bisexual, or refusing labels altogether. Using a feminist poststructuralist perspective, we examine their discursive constructions of sport and argue that the discourses articulated in sport allow for the creation of a space of resistance to heteronormativity. We suggest that the sport space is constructed as a “gaie” space within which a normalizing version of lesbian sexuality is proposed. We investigate how in/ex/clusion discourses are inscribed in space and how subjects are impacted by and, in turn, impact these discourses.
Suzanne Laberge and Yvan Girardin
White and Curtis’ recent papers (Sociology of Sport Journal, 1990, 7, pp. 347-368; International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 1990, 25, pp. 125-141) claiming a difference between Canadian Anglophones and Francophones in achievement values are critiqued. Two particular concerns are at issue. The first bears on the relationship these authors make between competitive sport participation and competition/achievement values. On that score, attention is focused upon some epistemological and methodological inadequacies. It is further argued that a conservative ideological perspective is implied in the inferring of achievement values from competitive sport participation. The second point challenges the idealistic conception conveyed by the authors’ contention that “studies outside the domain of work, on people’s ‘voluntary’ orientations to leisure activities, may more clearly show language group differences in achievement values.” Instead, it is proposed that sport practices are determined by the given social structure in which social agents live and by its specific social history. It is contended that an hermeneutical approach would be a more adequate alternative to the cross-cultural study of values differences.
French Canadians in professional ice hockey perform generally better than English Canadian or American players. This is particularly clear at the position of defenseman. Stacking in the National Hockey League (NHL) is also observed, with very few French Canadians playing defense. Four theses are presented to explain these two phenomena. The first three theses—based on differences in the style of play, the cultural costs of moving to an NHL city, and the proficiency of the language of work (English)—all incorporate convincing arguments but fail to predict further established facts. Hiring discrimination best explains all of the facts that have been gathered by students of ice hockey. Except in the case of defensemen, little or no salary discrimination against Francophones could be identified, although their pay is determined differently. The collection of a wide variety of data suggests that favoritism by scouts substantially affects the outcome of hiring decisions, especially at the positions for which assessment is highly uncertain and subjective, that is, the position of defense.
Brian E. Pruegger
“social fabric” of the impacted communities. Chapter 1 is a sociocultural analysis based on the suspension of Francophone Montreal Canadien’s superstar Maurice Richard commissioned by then president of the National Hockey League (NHL) Clarence Campbell. In this chapter, Suzanne Laberge postulates how the
1992 9 4 397 402 10.1123/ssj.9.4.397 Comment Toward a Better Understanding of the Sport Practices of Francophone and Anglophone Canadians James E. Curtis * Philip G. White * 12 1992 9 4 403 422 10.1123/ssj.9.4.403 Book Reviews Book Reviews Donald A. Dawson 12 1992 9 4 423 424 10.1123/ssj.9