ERIC Number: EJ1050642
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 72
Women's Recreational Surfing: A Patronising Experience
Olive, Rebecca; McCuaig, Louise; Phillips, Murray G.
Sport, Education and Society, v20 n2 p258-276 2015
Research analysing the operation of power within sport and physical activity has exposed the marginalisation and exclusion of women's sport in explicit and institutionalised ways. However, for women in recreational and alternative physical activities like surfing, sporting experiences lie outside institutionalised structures, thus requiring alternative surfing of conceptualising the processes of exclusionary power. In this paper, we focus on the voices of women recreational surfers to explore the changes which may or may not be occurring at smaller, more localised levels of women's engagement with surfing culture. An ethnographic methodology was employed to ask women how and why they engage in surfing and what it means for them, rather than asking questions based on existing assumptions. In presenting the data we draw upon the double meaning afforded by the term "to patronise" as a means of framing the complex ways that women continue to be differentiated in surfing culture, and the ways they respond to this. In the final section, we employ a Foucauldian analytic lens to explore the subtle normalising practices in which women are incited to recognise and undertake the practices of the valued masculine ideal of the "good surfer" through caring acts and advice offered by male surfers. This post-structuralist perspective offers space to think outside of simple resistance and reproduction, instead considering a complex space where women and men negotiate power in a range of ways from contextual, subjective positions. In conclusion, we argue that women recreational surfers are enacting alternative ways of operating within the power relations that circulate in the waves, creating ever-changing spaces for new ways of doing and knowing surfing to emerge.
Descriptors: Recreational Activities, Females, Aquatic Sports, Womens Athletics, Physical Activities, Ethnography, Attitude Measures, Social Influences, Social Attitudes, Masculinity, Interviews, Identification (Psychology), Feminism, Gender Bias, Social Bias, Foreign Countries, Cultural Influences
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia