Sporting the Nation. Gender, Ethnicity and Whiteness in Swedish Media Coverage of the Olympic Games, 1948 – 1972

DSpace Repository

Sporting the Nation. Gender, Ethnicity and Whiteness in Swedish Media Coverage of the Olympic Games, 1948 – 1972

Show full item record

Files for download

Find Full text There are no files associated with this item.

Facebook

Simple item record

Publication Conference Paper, other
Title Sporting the Nation. Gender, Ethnicity and Whiteness in Swedish Media Coverage of the Olympic Games, 1948 – 1972
Author(s) Tolvhed, Helena
Date 2007-08-03
English abstract
My forthcoming dissertation is a study of how Swedish national identity is constructed culturally, in which I analyse coverage of the Olympic Games 1948-1972 in the popular press. Media representation (text and images) of sport was selected as an interesting basis for exploring ideas on “natural differences” between people and bodies, based on gender, “race” and nationality. Ideas of difference between people have historically been used to explain and legitimize power relations and to (re-)create the nation as an “imagined community”. The method seeks to combine a text-oriented analysis with social history’s attention to historical context. The study shows that representations of female athletes display a passive female body and uphold the boundaries between the sexes. Fears of sport’s masculinizing effect on the female body and mind were negotiated by displacing images of unsexed, mannish women onto Soviet athletes. In the Cold War context, a specific Swedish femininity was constructed: western, white, heterosexual and middle-class. A Swedish masculine ideal, on the other hand, was made clear by contrasting comparison with femininity, but also with subordinated masculinities such as the “black” male athlete. The study show that the athletic achievements of the “black” body had to be explained and presented as restricted to the area of sport. I argue that although Sweden had not been a prominent colonial power, whiteness was nevertheless an important aspect of Swedish national identity in this time.
Language swe (iso)
Subject(s) sport
genus
etnicitet
idrott
Humanities/Social Sciences
Research Subject Categories::HUMANITIES and RELIGION
Research Subject Categories::SOCIAL SCIENCES
Note “Sport in a Global World – Past, Present and Future”, World Congress of the International Sociology of Sport Association & International Society for the History of Physical Education and Sport, 31 July – 5 augusti 2007, Copenhagen.
Handle http://hdl.handle.net/2043/9583 (link to this page)

This item appears in the following Collection(s)

Show full item record

Search


Browse

My Account

Statistics