Dilemmas of Gender and Global Sports Governance: An Invitation to Southern Theory

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Most research on global sports policy either negates or underappreciate perspectives from the Global South. This article incorporates Southern Theory to examine how Northern worldviews profoundly shape gender-specific sports policy. It highlights two dilemmas that emerge, using illustrative case studies. First, it considers questions of gender and regulation, as evidenced in the gender verification regimes of track-and-field. Then, it addresses the limits of gender and empowerment in relation to sport for development and peace initiatives’ engagement with the diverse experiences and perspectives in non-Western contexts, considering them in relation to programming for women in Pacific Island countries. The article concludes with a reflection on possible contributions of Southern theory to sport sociological scholarship.

Henne is with the Dept. of Sociology and Legal Studies, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, and also with the School of Regulation and Global Governance, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT. Pape is with the Dept. of Sociology, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI.

Address author correspondence to Kathryn Henne at khenne@uwaterloo.ca.
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