England’s proxy warriors? Women, war and sport

Bowes, A. ORCID: 0000-0001-5635-106X and Bairner, A., 2018. England’s proxy warriors? Women, war and sport. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 53 (4), pp. 393-410. ISSN 1012-6902

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It has been claimed that the one place Englishness exists is on the sports field, and usually it is men’s sport that appears central to creating a sense of English national identity. However, in light of England’s sporting success across multiple women’s sports (namely cricket, netball, association football and rugby union), there warrants a need to begin to question the place of these female athletes in discussions of the nation. Drawing on extensive interview data with women who have represented England at sport, this paper seeks to ‘give a voice’ to these women whose experiences have often been ignored by both the popular press and academics alike. This research discusses the way in which English women represent their nation, both on the field of play and more broadly, and sheds light on the complexity of the intersections of gender and national identity. Attention is also paid to the role of women as warriors in the conventional sense. It is argued that, through playing international, representative sport, the women actively embody the nation, with national identity often overriding gendered identity in these instances. In this sense, they become proxy warriors for the nation.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: International Review for the Sociology of Sport
Creators: Bowes, A. and Bairner, A.
Publisher: Sage
Date: 1 June 2018
Volume: 53
Number: 4
ISSN: 1012-6902
Divisions: Schools > School of Science and Technology
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 11 Apr 2019 15:47
Last Modified: 09 Sep 2019 13:17
URI: https://irep.ntu.ac.uk/id/eprint/36233

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