Women, Physical Literacy and Western Patriarchal Culture

Published: April 21, 2007

British Philosophy of Sport Association – 2007
Squaring the circle – Women, Physical Literacy and Western Patriarchal Culture
Margaret Whitehead

The paper adds to the debate regarding the way western patriarchal culture has been instrumental in creating a situation in which women are devalued, objectified, and viewed in many ways as inferior to men. The views of de Beauvoir (1949) and Young (1990) are considered briefly and their somewhat dualistic leanings questioned. A monist perspective is then introduced as a backdrop to look again at the situation in which women find themselves. Paying particular attention to the significance of the embodied dimension in the life experiences of women, the paper moves to outline a goal to which women can aspire and ways in which this end can be worked towards. Central to this discussion will be the concept of physical literacy and problems and opportunities in respect of developing this attribute in women.

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