Differentiations and intersections
a corpus-assisted discourse study of gender representations in the British press before, during and after the London Olympics 2012
Keywords:gender, sport, media, national identity, race, London Olympics, intersections
This study examines the impact of a global sports event on gender representations in media reporting. Whereas previous research on gender, sport and media has been mainly concerned with sports events in the North American or Australian context, this study investigates the British media reporting before, during and after the London Olympics 2012. Our study follows the approach of Corpus-Assisted Discourse Studies (CADS) and uses both quantitative and qualitative research procedures. The results reveal more balanced gender representations during the London Olympics in that the ‘regular’ biased associations were supressed in favour of positive references to female achievements. However, little carry-though of the ‘gains’ was noted. Also, this study shows that the positive associations intersected with national sentiments and were used to celebrate the nation-state. At the same time, some subtle resistance was observed to accepting as ‘truly’ British the non-white athletes and those not born in Britain.
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