Feminist Narratives of Sport: a second- and third- wave consciousness-raising project

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Barnes, Sarah
feminism , Canadian women's interuniversity sport , personal narratives
In Canada there are increasing numbers of girls and women playing sport (Ifedi, 2005). In part, these opportunities are the result of earlier feminist efforts in the 1970s and 1980s and yet feminism itself is very rarely a part of the experiences of girls and women once they are involved in sport. The purpose of this thesis is to explore how this might be different and to create feminist politics around women’s high performance sport in Canada. This consciousness-raising qualitative writing project features three narratives written from a first-person perspective based on my experiences playing interuniversity sport. Chapters on methodology, second- and third-wave feminism and Canadian sport history provide a context for the narratives chapter. I urge other athletes to take up feminisms so that they might gain a different perspective to understand their experiences and see greater connections between themselves and other women. This might inspire women to change what they expect from and how they evaluate their experiences in sport in ways that align with feminist ideas. The project concludes with some thoughts on doing a qualitative writing project that might be helpful to other graduate students who are considering doing this type of research.
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