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Women in Sport: The Synthesis Begins

Judith R. Holland and Carole Oglesby
The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science
Vol. 445, Contemporary Issues in Sport (Sep., 1979), pp. 80-90
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1042957
Page Count: 11
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Women in Sport: The Synthesis Begins
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Abstract

Sports have emerged as a primary area of controversy about men's and women's roles. The authors argue that women's sport has changed dramatically in recent years while men's sport has changed little. An additional level of change in sport, synthesizing elements of the traditional men's and women's sport experience, would be socially beneficial. Essential elements of play, game, sport, and athletics, are identified as defined in the emerging sport sciences. Selective socialization of males and females via sport was accomplished through the shaping of "masculine" and "feminine" sport experiences. The effect of the women's movement has been to adopt traditional sport as instrumentality, rather than masculinity, training. This requires little restructuring of sport by men. A new conception of sport is presented in which the elements of traditional men's and women's sport are theoretically synthesized. Because of the past emphasis on the masculine-instrumental elements of sport, it is hypothesized that a temporal focus on the feminine-expressive elements is necessary to the occurrence of a synthesis. The paper concludes with a full description of the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW), which aids in the accomplishment of the synthesis. The history, present issues, and future trends of the AIAW are discussed.

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