A CULTURAL INSIGHT INVESTIGATING THE GENDERED EXPERIENCE OF PE: A FEMALE PERSPECTIVE.
University of Wales Institute Cardiff
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There is a growing concern regarding the low participation trends amongst girls after the age of 11. Academics have attempted to explain the sociological reasoning behind the declining participation rates; however the problem remains prominent in PE. This study will aim to explore and interpret a cultural understanding of the girls’ attitudes and behaviours towards PE and sport. The data was collected from a secondary school in Southampton. Initially, observations were carried out to illustrate the girls’ behaviour in PE and semi structured interviews were then conducted using four participants to explore the girls’ attitudes and perceptions of PE. The results were analysed using Butlers (2004) concept of Performativity, Youngs’ (1998) Modalities of behaviour and Connells’ (1987) Gender Order. The main findings of the study were that the heterosexual gaze constrains girls to adhere to feminine standards and restricts their participation in PE. In addition to this the girls saw PE as a masculine space and believed that females were inhibited as a result of this.