College of Communication Master of Arts Theses

Date of Award

Spring 6-2010

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Communication


This study took a critical historical content analysis of the media’s coverage of women’s athletics through the 1990’s and into the early part of the 2000’s. Not only was there massive growth in the quantity of coverage for women’s sports, but specifically for the U.S. Women’s soccer team. As media depictions showed this particular team displaying both masculine and feminine characteristics on and off the field, the idea of gender fluidity proved to be accepted and cherished by society. It is possible for women to perform or enact traditionally masculine or feminine identities throughout their daily lives. The U.S. Women’s soccer team played a significant role in challenging traditional notions of gender identity, acting as the gateway team for the representation of women athletes as a whole.

Included in

Communication Commons