Subjugated to the existing hegemonic practices of

This preview shows page 8 - 10 out of 10 pages.

subjugated to the existing hegemonic practices of male fandom and the opportunities it continues to provide for acquiring and reinfor- cing masculine capital. For all its complexities and nuance, we would contend that this sort of rupture ultimately promotes and sustains hegemonic forms of masculinity, which include stereotypical, discriminatory, and prej- udicial attitudes that uphold the power and dominance of White heterosexual men over subordinate masculinities and women in football culture. This, in turn, reinforces the notion that, while most male fans might profess support for more women in men s football in the United Kingdom, the stadium must remain, essentially, a masculine space. This is not only a reassuring and pleasurable place to watch the match, but also a site for enhancing and reinforcing differences between men and women by both promoting and accepting sexist and misogynistic practices. In this way and despite claims about fan irony and friendly banter we would argue that sexist abuse and forms of sex discrimination remain damagingly entrenched in the culture of men s football in the United Kingdom. More reluctant male fans and some females are broadly complicit toward promulgating the hegemonic model in relation to their own and others gender-based practices. Indeed, some female fans seem pressed to embrace sexism and stereotypical assumptions about women as fans, even as other females might (Ahead of Print) 8 Cleland, Pope, and Williams
strive openly to resist such views and practices ( Dunn, 2014 ; Jones, 2008 ; Pope, 2017 ). Overall, we would argue that there is some evidence of a cultural shift regarding the position of those fans who engage with U.K. club message boards, but that deeply embedded constraints and hostility remain. Moving forward, as Dunn ( 2014 ) pointed out, there is little agreed policy on how sexism is to be challenged in U.K. football, with antisexism campaigns targeting the treatment of women in the men s game yet to gain popular support. But, as we have seen with various high-pro fi le and successful antisexism initiatives driven by social media # MeToo and # EverydaySexism immediately come to mind establishing momentum can be an important element in achieving more widespread support for equity change, even in a masculinist preserve such as U.K. football. In this context, we would argue that many male fans seem to have grasped reasonably well the theory of a positive gender shift in football culture, but support for concrete change to the entrenched citadels of cultural masculinity across the men s game in the United Kingdom still seems rather elusive. Notes 1. We use the term football to describe the association game, though we are aware that soccer is the preferred term in some parts of the world, particularly North America. 2. Ultras are a subcultural group of mainly young fans who are highly organized and committed to a particular club.

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture