Culture, Race, and Gender in Sports Essay

696 Words 3 Pages
Culture, Race, and Gender in Sports

When a person of a specific gender enters a non-traditional sport for their gender/sex, many social and moral issues will arise challenging that person involved in that particular sport. The intentions of the individual will be questioned as well as their personal interest in the sport. Before any of these questions are asked, there must be a redefinition of gender roles, femininity, and masculinity. In order for a person to enter a non-traditional sport for their gender/sex without being criticize about gender morality, society must set flexible definitions for femininity and masculinity.

Society must begin to accept the variety of sports both men and women can compete in regardless of the
…show more content…
Through the movies viewed in this course this semester, we saw women who were able to play against men and still keep their femininity. Nothing is lost when playing sports not traditionally meant for a particular race or gender. Society must become more understanding when it comes to the sports different types of people play and hinder from stereotyping anyone when they participate and perform well in that sport.

When women decide to participate in sports traditionally for men such as bodybuilding, they risk the chance of being socially stereotyped as lesbians, or simply viewed as "less feminine" then say women figure skaters. For example, Venus Williams is seen as criticized for being very masculine in build and judged on that by her performance. The media has commented on how well she plays, and has compared her to men in her sport. She receives fewer endorsements than many other tennis players do because of her looks (but mainly due to her race).

Men place themselves in the same situation when they chose to perform/participate in traditional female sports like field hockey, socially stereotyped as gay or less masculine than hockey players.

There has been a change in the way certain gender sports were viewed when women/men attempted to challenge the boundaries. Gymnastics for example began as an all-male sport. It was believed that women did not have the build nor strength to compete in this sport. In 1928 were women allowed to compete in the Olympics in
Open Document