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Title: Discourses of homophobia and homosexuality in English professional men's football
Author: Bury, Jonah
ISNI:       0000 0004 5919 6896
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis provides a queer analysis of the visuality and visibility of homophobia and homosexuality (i.e. non-heterosexuality) as they are discursively articulated by key stakeholders of English professional men's football: governing bodies, the print media and anti-homophobia campaigns. Against the background of growing public and scholarly attention devoted to this subject, the thesis contributes to existing scholarship in the sociology of sports and queer theory by explaining, and unpacking, how visuality and visibility shape thinking about homophobia and homosexuality in the footballing context. Some of the key discursive sites associated with homophobia and homosexuality in English professional men's football- the figure of the gay footballer, the football stadium and the English Football Association - are largely constructed through visual means such as videos, posters and images. Thus, gay (i.e. non-heterosexual) footballers are made sense of through 'coming out', and consequently being visible as 'gay; homophobia in the stadium is visually made familiar through the individual homophobe; and the FA visually communicate their commitment and ability to address homophobia through institutional spokespeople and the declining visibility of racism. The data material is comprised of semi-structured interview data with individuals affiliated with football governing bodies, anti-homophobia/discrimination campaign groups, journalists/bloggers, as well as campaign documents and print media articles. The data is analysed by drawing on Foucault's writings on discourse and queer theory's analytical concern of destabilising social categories, knowledge, and norms. It is argued that the discursive sites of the gay footballer, the stadium and the FA are constituted through tensions between visibility and invisibility that signify and reveal how existing discourses are continuously challenged by alternative knowledge and subjects. This offers the possibility for thinking about future directions for discourses on homophobia and homosexuality in and beyond football.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available