Football and the Female "Other": Female Football Players and Narratives of Complicity and Contest

By Kate Themen.

Published by Journal of Sporting Cultures and Identities

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: May 7, 2015 $US5.00

This research paper examines women’s football in England and draws on the experiences of female football players in order to engage critical discussion of gender in football. Setting a context that draws on the historical legacy of gender that emerged through public schools and establishment of the Football Association, I draw on 11 open interviews with female football players to examine how gender is manifest in English football. During interviews, narratives that became apparent were indicative firstly, of the extent to which female football players may be complicit in adhering to gendered discourses, and the extent to which this intersects with their experiences of playing football. Secondly, contexts in which transformation arise utilize the agency of female football players to engage in cultural contestation, particularly in mixed-sex football sessions, whereby patterns of negotiation and new spaces emerge

Keywords: Femininity, Football, Masculinity, Narrative Research

Journal of Sporting Cultures and Identities, Volume 6, Issue 2, June 2015, pp.1-11. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: May 7, 2015 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 435.202KB)).

Kate Themen

PhD Candidate, Department of Sociology, Social Policy and Criminology, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK