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Female skateboarders and their negotiation of space and identity

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Female skateboarders and their negotiation of space and identity

Porter, Natalie Louise (2003) Female skateboarders and their negotiation of space and identity. Masters thesis, Concordia University.

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Abstract

I have considered how female skateboarders negotiate space and identity in a male-dominated subculture and question a society that is intent on perpetuating an attitude that subcultures are a domain for developing masculinity. Female skateboarders have always participated alongside the men, but it has been a constant struggle because their accomplishments are rarely encouraged by the skateboard media industry, and mainstream media representations reflect this practice. In recent years, girl skaters have taken it upon themselves to create their own visibility and develop networks of support by producing websites, videos, zines, and organizing "all-girls" skateboard competitions. As a result, a unique community of female skateboarders has been established. Female skateboarders come from a variety of backgrounds, and I focus upon the experiences of a group of women skateboarders from Montreal, Canada by conducting interviews and observing how the group has evolved. Despite the diverse and even contradictory responses, it is apparent that when female skateboarders actively participate in the subculture they are redefining traditional notions of femininity and assumptions regarding who should be valued as an "authentic" skateboarder. My thesis traces a history of women in skateboarding, describes their activities as cultural producers, and offers insider accounts, such as acts of resistance. I also make comparisons with the situation of sportswomen and challenge past subcultural research that limit the participation of girls to their relationships with male members. It was my goal to exhibit how women can adopt, share and innovate their subcultures' ideals.

Divisions:Concordia University > Faculty of Arts and Science > Communication Studies
Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Authors:Porter, Natalie Louise
Pagination:vi, 154 leaves : ill. ; 29 cm.
Institution:Concordia University
Degree Name:Theses (M.A.)
Program:Communication Studies
Date:2003
Thesis Supervisor(s):Acland, Charles
ID Code:2270
Deposited By:Concordia University Libraries
Deposited On:27 Aug 2009 13:26
Last Modified:08 Dec 2010 10:25
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