1st Edition

Women Sport Fans Identification, Participation, Representation

By Kim Toffoletti Copyright 2017
    168 Pages
    by Routledge

    168 Pages
    by Routledge

    Women worldwide are making their presence felt as sport fans in rapidly increasing numbers. This book makes a distinctive and innovative contribution to the study of sport fandom by exploring the growing visibility and interest in women who follow sport. It presents the latest data on women’s sport spectatorship in different regions of the world, posing new theoretical paradigms to study the globalised nature of female sport fandom.

    This book goes beyond conventional approaches to analysing the practices of women sport fans. By using a critical feminist perspective to investigate cultural conditions and social contexts (including globalisation, digital networked technologies, consumerism, neoliberalism and postfeminism), it brings into view a diversity of women’s voices and experiences as sport fans. It sheds new light on the power dynamics of gender, ethnicity and sexuality influencing women’s participation in sport spectatorship and interrogates the ways female sport fandom is made visible through transnational media networks.

    Women Sport Fans: Identification, Participation, Representation is fascinating reading for all those interested in sport and gender, the sociology of sport, or women’s studies.


    1. Facts, Figures and Frameworks: Approaching the Study of Women Sport Fans

    2. Identities, Performances and Pleasures

    3. Consumption

    4. Representation

    5. Digital Networks

    6. The Postfeminist Sport Fan



    Kim Toffoletti is Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Deakin University, Australia. She specialises in the study of women’s sporting experiences and representations, using transnational feminist and critical postfeminist perspectives. She is the co-editor of Sport and Its Female Fans (Routledge, 2012)

    "Toffoletti has presented a timely account of current research on women sport fans. The book goes beyond the common reconstruction of the practices of female supporters but asks important questions of why and how women’s fandom is encouraged. As becomes evident throughout the book, the way sporting institutions address gender diversity in fandom often serves to preserve or reinforce gender hierarchies in sports." - Henk Erik Meier, University of Münster, European Journal for Sport and Society

    "Women Sport Fans succeeds most notably as a rich survey of existing literature relevant to the study of female sports fans and as a provocation for further research … Toffoletti offers a dynamic roadmap for future sports feminist scholarship and makes a compelling case for the importance of a transnational feminist perspective to the field." – Kathy Cacace, University of Texas at Austin, Feminist Media Studies

    "The book gives a testimony of how unequal relations between men and women function in different countries and in different sports, which may enable, for example, sports and women’s organisations to strengthen emancipatory practices in this area. In the scientific world, the book should open a discussion of great importance, as women are becoming more and more significant actors in the world of sport, actors who can no longer be underestimated." - Honorata Jakubowska, Adam Mickiewicz University, Poland, & Radoslaw Kossakowski, Gdansk University, Poland, International Review for the Sociology of Sport