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ERIC Number: EJ908471
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 6
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 17
ISSN: ISSN-1445-8918
A Malleable Body--Revelations from an Elite Australian Swimmer
McMahon, Jenny; DinanThompson, Maree
ACHPER Australia Healthy Lifestyles Journal, v55 n1 p23-28 2008
Australian Swimming functions on meritocratic principles as athletes are immersed in a culture that focuses on achievement. Meritocratic principles are accompanied by a technocentric ideology where a "swimmer body" is a commodity "viewed as an instrument and object for manipulation" (Baine, 1990, p. 29) in order to achieve success. This paper focuses on swimming as a social practice. My experiences as an Australian Swimming representative reveal how my body was viewed as a malleable object that was trained and manipulated to a perceived ideal for the sake of performance. As a consequence, I began purging (and complying) my body in an attempt to conform to an idealistic shape set by Australian team managers and coaches and other social regulators.
Australian Council for Health, Physical Education and Recreation. 214 Port Road PO Box 304, Hindmarsh, SA 5007, Australia. Tel: +61-8-8340-3388; Fax: +61-8-8340-3399; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia