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Academic Writing

Task: For this assessment you are to investigate, explain, analyse and evaluate one (1) of the six interdisciplinary topics and quotes listed below. Investigate and explain why each chosen topic and quote represents a sociocultural issue surrounding ethics, equity, and access to exercise/sport/physical activity in Australia and/or oversees. Analyse and evaluate the causes and impact your chosen topics and quotes may have on particular people and/or groups of people with respect to their involvement in exercise/sport/physical activity in Australia and/or overseas today. Similarly, analyse and evaluate the ways in which your chosen sociocultural concerns inform your own practice as a teacher, codes of ethics and conduct for the teaching profession. With the help of research sources write a 1500 word response:

1) Gender, Power and Sport – “A major theme in sports history and sociology is how competitive sports in economically advanced, highly developed Western societies have been a critical element in the construction of hegemonic forms of masculinity (Kidd, 1987; Whitson, 1990; Messner & Sabo, 1994; Jansen & Sabo, 1994; Anderson, 2005b Coad, 2008; Horton, 2009). Put crudely, modern sport has been invented by men, for men, and in the interests of men. Sport, whether in ancient Greece or in the English public schools of the 19th century, has been thought to epitomize various values and virtues that embody “being a man.” Whether the rugged individualism of the boxer or the team-oriented collectivism of the footballer, sport has long been assumed to be t (Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission, 2001)character building for men (Mangan & Walvin, 1987). The position of women in this story is by contrast problematic; if sport has been about “making” men and displaying masculinities through physical contests, then females have been presented with cultural obstacles in respect of their gender identities—particularly when sport participation has been labeled as inimical to femininity… In terms of sport and masculinity… ideals of manliness through the physicality of the athletic contest, have typically reinforced narrow, rather stereotypical ideas of what it is to be a man. Critics have contended that modern sports have become a special arena, a public stage if you will, for the production and reproduction of hegemonic forms of masculinity (Connell, 1995; Terret, 2004; Knijnik & Falcao-Defino, 2010). Via the playing field, sports have been assumed to “build the character” of young males, helping them to learn to be “real men” via a shared sense of physical struggle and the social capital that derives from male bonding in athletic environments (Drummond, 2002).” – Knijnik, J. & Adair. D. (2015). Conceptualizing Embodied Masculinities in Global Sport. In J. Knijnik & D. Adair (Eds.), Embodied Masculinities in Global Sport (pp.1-11). West Virginia University: FIT Publishing, p. 4-5.

2) Religion and Sport – “Muslim women… remain at the centre of deep political, cultural and religious struggles about what is important, what is right and wrong and how social life should be organised. Muslim women in sports embody and personify these struggles. On the one hand, these women are active subjects asserting new ideas about what it means to be a Muslim woman. On the other hand, they are passive objects used in debates about morality and social change in the world today. Of course, there are significant variations in the rights and autonomy of women in different countries where Islam is the dominant religion. But in general, struggles over issues of religion and gender will continue for Muslim women participating publicly in sports. At the same time, Muslim women living in predominantly Christian countries sometimes use sport played in private as a refuge and an opportunity to spend time with peers who share their beliefs. But coming to terms with ‘Allah’s will’ continue to be a challenge for many Muslim women. Their sport participation often depends on the support of people working in sport organizations. For those in sport management it raises an important question: What strategies are most effective in promoting inclusion and accommodating religious diversity in programs and facilities?” – Jay Coakley (2015). Sports in Society: Issues and Controversies. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, p. 520

3) Class, Sport and Physical Activity – “The lifestyle of low-income people and those living under the poverty line seldom involve regular forms of sport participation, unless a shoe company identifies a young potential star and sponsors his or her participation. When people struggle to stretch the family budget, they seldom can maintain a life style that includes regular sport participation. Spending money to play or watch sport is a luxury that most low-income people can’t afford…Sport participation patterns worldwide are connected with social class and the distribution of material resources. Organised sports are a luxury that people in many regions of the world cannot afford. Even in wealthy societies, sport participation is most common among those in the middle and upper-classes, and class-based lifestyles often go hand-in-hand with staging and participating in certain sports.” – Jay Coakley (2015). Sports in Society: Issues and Controversies. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, p. 274 & 298

4) Disability, Sport and Physical Activity – “Where are disability sports in high schools? For all practical purposes, they are invisible….Some athletes with disabilities play on standards teams, but apart from them, there is only one varsity athlete in adapted sports for every 950 athletes on high school teams. Students with disabilities are ‘off the radar’ for most high school sport programs and nearly all college programs. Consequently, students miss opportunities to play with and watch their peers with various (dis)abilities compete and share sport experiences with them. This is a missed educational opportunity for all students.” – Jay Coakley (2015). Sports in Society: Issues and Controversies. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, p. 497

5) Gender, Bodies, Power and Sport – “Particularly noteworthy in all of the myths about intersex…athletes is the concern for “normal” athletes and for maintaining a level playing field. What is missing from these conversations is a concern for the intersex… athletes. Imagine what can be gained by reframing this discussion and encouraging inclusion and compassion. An important part of sport is learning to be a “team player,” which can include valuing and supporting diverse teammates. While sport often reinforces traditional notions of gender and gendered expectations, it also can be a place for transformation and growth. Talking about… intersex athletes, such as when they are in the news, will reduce the mystery surrounding them. Casually pointing out misinformation and providing truthful information can undermine bias and discrimination in a nonthreatening manner. As athletes recognize that they can ask questions and get answers, they likely will become not only more knowledgeable, but more compassionate and supportive of individuals who are different from themselves.” – Vikki Krane and Katie Sullivan Barak (2012). Current Events and Teachable Moments: Creating Dialog About Transgender and Intersex Athletes. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, 83(4), p. 42.

6) Indigeneity and Sport – “The sporting arena has offered Aboriginal people a stark and confusing contradiction. It has been an avenue of acceptance, and then at times a space of fierce resentment. Aboriginal people have proven exceptional sportsmen and women, but historically many were denied their rightful place on ability by racist barriers and prejudice. From an Aboriginal perspective, racism in Australian sport is a complex issue. There are so many differing and diverse interpretations of Aboriginal sporting involvement and the pursuit of an Aboriginal perspective is complex in itself. The desire is not to set out a prescribed pattern of analysis but to open an awareness of the many differing and varied sporting experiences of Aboriginal people in Australian history. Times have changed somewhat, but sporting success for Aborigines and Islanders still means being held up as the whitewashed Australian success…” – Maynard, J. (2012). Contested space – The Australian Aboriginal sporting arena. Sport in Society: Cultures, Commerce, Media, Politics, 15(7), 987-996., p. 987

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