GENDERED DOUBLE STANDARDS: A PHILOSOPHICAL ANALYSIS OF THE REVULSION TOWARDS TRANSGRESSIVE FEMALE DOPERS.
University of Wales Institute Cardiff
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Burke (2001) has suggested the doping ban is a debate that feminists ought to explore; the ban on doping, he argues, is one of the most under explored avenues of social change. In this thesis I argue that the moral panic that doping creates amongst fans, spectators and the sporting community cannot be satisfactorily explained by the commonsensical arguments that are reiterated within the literature. The reaction to doping, I argue, is, at least in part, indicative of societies distaste for transgressive female athletes. In other words, a different standard of judgment is used to evaluate female athletes who dope. Powerful and successful athletes are often the target of scrutiny and are treated in a way that male athletes are not. This, I refer to as a double gendered standard and explain how double standards most often benefit men rather than women (Pilcher and Whelehan, 2004). This thesis provides a feminist critique of the current anti-doping legislation and argues that the doping ban is used as a practice that: (i) Controls women’s bodies, (ii) Reinforces the male/female division and (iii) Maintains male dominance.