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Challenges of Exploring Women’s Resistance in Post-colonial Hegemonic Masculinity

Molnar, Gyozo and Kanemasu, Y. (2016) Challenges of Exploring Women’s Resistance in Post-colonial Hegemonic Masculinity. In: Word Congress of Sociology of Sport, 8th-11th June 2016, Budapest, Hungary. (Submitted)

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Abstract

In Fiji, rugby is commonly associated with national pride and is a cultural practice intertwined with indigenous tradition – in particular, with the pre-colonial martial tradition in which male warriors played a central role. Nowadays, rugby is celebrated as the pinnacle of indigenous masculinity, and rugby players – as modern warriors – embody a unique and profoundly gendered ‘Fijianness’. Despite the dominance of this masculinist tradition, women have played rugby ‘in the shadows’ for at least over two decades. They have done so in the face of severe negative sanctions both from wider communities and from their own kin. In post-colonial societies where traditional as well as Western hegemonic masculinities have been jointly supressing women in a range of cultural spheres, including sports, it is particularly challenging to locate an explore personal narratives that would help outsiders understand the everyday challenges women face in such cultural contexts. In Fiji women’s rights movements have a relatively short history and social life remains profoundly shaped by a traditional, male-dominant gender hierarchy. This gender hierarchy is fortified by the longevity of the pre-colonial martial/masculinist tradition and its (re)articulation as part of postcolonial nationalism. Women rugby players (and female athletes in general) thus combat a doubly-entrenched gender structure. Based on our field research involving women rugby players, in this presentation we reflect on and explore the particular as well as general challenges we experienced when conducted research with a postcolonial disenfranchised population.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
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Uncontrolled Keywords: Fiji, rugby, women rugby players
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Academic Departments > Institute of Sport and Exercise Science
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Depositing User: Gyozo Molnar
Date Deposited: 08 Apr 2016 13:11
Last Modified: 08 Apr 2016 13:11
URI: https://eprints.worc.ac.uk/id/eprint/4279

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