Fighting Sports, Gender, and the Commodification of Violence
Download Full Text
Fighting Sports, Gender and the Commodification of Violence: Heavy Bag Heroines offers a glimpse into the cultural terrain of women’s boxing as it manifests in everyday gyms for novice boxers. Taking an ethnographic approach, Victoria E. Collins examines broad understandings of gender, violence, self-defense, commodification, and health and fitness from the point of view of women who engage the sport. Collins unpacks dominant assumptions about gender and the sport through her participants’ understandings of gender norms, social assumptions about physicality, sexuality, as well as challenges to masculine and feminine performativity. Central to this study is the appropriation and marketing of the boxers’ work out in cardio-boxing gym spaces (i.e., fitness boxing), where the sport has increasingly been packaged, commodified, and sold to predominantly middle class, white female consumers as a means to not only improve their health and fitness, but also to defend themselves against a would-be attacker. The body project for women in the sport of boxing, therefore, should not only be framed as a form of resistance, but one of physical feminism.
Rowan & Littlefield
social science, criminology, gender studies, sports, boxing
Criminology | Criminology and Criminal Justice | Gender and Sexuality | Other Social and Behavioral Sciences | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Social Justice
Collins, Victoria E., "Fighting Sports, Gender, and the Commodification of Violence" (2021). EKU Faculty and Staff Books Gallery. 47.