Women's football in the United Kingdom: Theorizing gender and unpacking the butch lesbian image

Authors: Caudwell, J.

http://eprints.brighton.ac.uk/7758/

Journal: Journal of Sport and Social Issues

Volume: 23

Pages: 390-402

Publisher: Sage

This source preferred by Jayne Caudwell

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Authors: Caudwell, J.

Journal: Journal of Sport and Social Issues

Volume: 23

Issue: 4

Pages: 390-402

eISSN: 1552-7638

ISSN: 0193-7235

DOI: 10.1177/0193723599234003

This article draws on recent quantitative and qualitative research material to show how gender functions in the cultural arena of women's football in the United Kingdom. In particular, the questionnaire and interview findings show that the "butch lesbian" identity is a concern for those players who have taken part in the research. This supports other research on women taking part in sports traditionally defined as male. I will discuss the findings as they relate to the social construction of gender and lesbianism. The research suggests that our understanding of gender and sexuality is bound up in a structuralist analysis. I will offer a post-structuralist interpretation as a "new" way to theorize gender and sexuality as they function within women's football culture in the United Kingdom. © 1999 Sage Publications, Inc.

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