Walton+_+Helstein_2008_Triumph+of+Backlash - Sociology of...

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369 Sociology of Sport Journal, 2008, 25, 369-386 © 2008 Human Kinetics, Inc. Triumph of Backlash: Wrestling Community and the “Problem” of Title IX Theresa A. Walton Michelle T. Helstein Kent State University University of Lethbridge Attempts to unify and mobilize the U.S. collegiate wrestling community to “save” it from decline frames Title IX as the main “problem” to overcome. The logic of a com- munity of identification at work in this strategy limits the interventions that can be made for wrestling while enabling corporate men’s sport to remain the hegemonic form of U.S. collegiate athletics. We explicate and critique the varied articulations of wrestling as a community of identification following Helstein’s (2005) call to decon- struct assumptions of unified sporting communities and to consider communities of articulation. We illustrate how communities of identification necessarily fail and how moving toward communities of articulation offers an intervention that enables a reframing of the relationship between Title IX and collegiate wrestling that could motivate meaningful change. Les tentatives pour unifier et mobiliser la communauté de la lutte universitaire améric- aine afin de la sauver du déclin identifient la loi « Title IX » comme problème princi- pal à résoudre. La logique d’une communauté d’identification à l’œuvre dans cette stratégie limite les interventions qui peuvent être faites pour aider la lutte tout en permettant au sport masculin corporatif de rester la forme hégémonique du sport uni- versitaire américain. En répondant à l’invitation d’Helstein (2005) à déconstruire les suppositions des communautés sportives unifiées et à considérer les communautés d’articulation, nous expliquons et critiquons les articulations variées de la commu- nauté de la lutte en tant que communauté d’identification. Nous illustrons comment les communautés d’identification ne fonctionnent pas et comment les communautés d’articulation permettent une intervention qui offre l’occasion de recadrer la relation entre la loi Title IX et la lutte universitaire de façon à promouvoir un changement significatif. In the last 35 years there has been a significant gender shift in higher educa- tion within the U.S. Whereas a majority of undergraduate students in the early 1970s were men, today a majority are women. This change, along with perceived gender performance differences in primary and secondary schools, has garnered significant media coverage as an impending “boy crisis.” In 2006 alone, PBS, the Theresa A. Walton is with the School of Exercise, Leisure and Sport, Kent State University, 264G Gym Annex, Kent, OH. Michelle T. Helstein is with Kinesiology and Physical Education, University of Lethbridge, 4401 University Drive, Lethbridge, AB.
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370 Triumph of Backlash New York Times , Washington Post , the Today Show, Esquire , and Newsweek , among others, presented reports outlining concerns of the growing domination of females in education (Mead, 2006). Ironically, in response, many smaller liberal
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  • Fall '10
  • MarkSchuster
  • Greco-Roman wrestling, Freestyle wrestling, Amateur wrestling, Collegiate wrestling, Scholastic wrestling

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