author={Michael A. Messner},
  journal={Journal of Contemporary Ethnography},
  pages={416 - 444}
  • M. Messner
  • Published 1 January 1990
  • Sociology, Education
  • Journal of Contemporary Ethnography
This article is based on in-depth interviews with 30 male former athletes of different race and class. I use feminist theories of the social construction of gender to explore the relationship between the construction of masculine identity and boyhood participation in organized sports. I examine family, peer group, and community relationships as key contexts within which young males become committed to athletic careers. I argue that organized sports are initially experienced as a context in… 
Masculinities and Sexualities of Elite Male Team Sport Athletes: An Ethnographic Examination
Previous research on masculinities in team sports, in Western cultures, has shown that stratifications of men were based on athletic capital, homophobic and misogynistic language, and the maintenance
“New Lads”?
Historically, sport has been so closely identified with men that sport has become one of the key signifiers of masculinity in many Western societies. Traditional institutionalized sports cultures in
No pain, no gain: embodied masculinities and lifestyle sport in Japan
Abstract In postmodern society, the field of consumption has replaced the world of production as the main arena in which dominant stereotypes of masculinity and femininity are communicated and
Sport Participation and Women's Personal Empowerment: Experiences of the College Athlete
As a result of gender-role socialization, women are often discouraged from viewing themselves as strong, competent, and self-determining individuals. Becoming empow ered at the personal level would
The social construction of masculinity as it relates to sport: An investigation into the lives of elite level athletes competing in individually-oriented masculinised sports
Sport ha•long been regarded as a masculine domain. fu the past the literature has tended to focus on male athletes with respect to sensational or noteworthy performances, however little attention has
Masculinity in Japanese Sports Films
This paper considers three recent Japanese sports films for young people, Feel the Wind (2009), Oppai Volleyball (2009) and Dive!! (2008), which employ a common sports film script to explore the ways
College men, Community Engagement, and Masculinity: Ten Narratives of Men Making a Difference
The purpose of this study was to investigate the participation of cisgender collegiate men in community engagement activities. As a group, collegiate men disproportionately engage in unhealthy
Football Culture in an Australian School Setting: The Construction of Masculine Identity
This paper argues that teenage males draw variously on signifying contexts in football to construct their understandings of who they 'are'. As such, football is a widely revered human activity that
The Fight: Symbolic Expression and Validation of Masculinity in Working Class Tavern Culture
This study examines the role that masculinity plays in men’s decisions to participate in bar fights. The data were obtained via semi-structured interviews with adult, White males in Louisiana who had
The Social Construction of Female and Male High School Basketball Participation: Reproducing the Gender Order through a Two-Tiered Sporting Institution
Qualitative interviews explore the meanings increased female participation in basketball have for a sample of basketball players from three high schools. To what extent are post–Title IX female


Men's studies' scholars have begun to critically examine and deconstruct the meaning of masculinity, but thus far, most of their studies have focused exclusively on the lives of white, middle-class
Sports and Male Domination: The Female Athlete as Contested Ideological Terrain
This paper explores the historical and ideological meanings of organized sports for the politics of gender relations. After outlining a theory for building a historically grounded understanding of
The Discourse of Gender and Sport: From Femininity to Feminism
The argument presented here is that the sociological discourse of gender and sport, in other words the way the topic is approached, the assumptions surrounding its investigation, and the ways in
Power and Authority: Moral Consensus and Conformity in Sport
This study examined the moral rationales of 109 male and female coaches, athletes and non- athletes. Subjects read a series of sport scenarios in which a conflict arose between an athlete and a
Sport, Men, and the Gender Order: Critical Feminist Perspectives
This reference uses a relational concept of gender that critically examines and debunks traditional assumptions about men, women, and sport. Eighteen original articles explore the lives of individual
The Boy Scouts and the Validation of Masculinity
The success of the Boy Scouts of America in the early twentieth century can in part be understood in terms of increased concern over the maintenance of traditional concepts of masculinity. Adult men
Gender differences at work : women and men in nontraditional occupations
Nurses and marines epitomize accepted definitions of femininity and masculinity. Using ethnographic research and provocative in-depth interviews, Christine Williams argues that our popular
Beyond patriarchy : essays by men on pleasure, power, and change
This is a frank and original analysis of patriarchy by men from all walks of life, living on three continents. Starting with the basic assumption that the breakdown of the patriarchal system is a
Masculinity and Male Dominance
The problems with established sociological and socio-psychological conceptions of masculinity are discussed, and it is argued that object-relations theory can provide a clearer understanding of