Sport Management Students' Views on Eliminating Sexist Language

Article excerpt

Janet B. Parks and Mary Ann Roberton, Bowling Green State University

Sexist language "includes words, phrases, and expressions that unnecessarily differentiate between women and men or exchide, trivialize, or diminish either gender" (Parks & Roberton, 1998, p. 455). Examples of sexist language are false generics (baseman), gender marking of women's teams (Lady Stallions), and honorifics denoting marital status (Mrs./Miss). Research has suggested that sexist language in sport empowers men but marginalizes and disempowers women (Eitzen & Zinn, 1989, 1993; Messner, Duncan, &Jensen, 1993). It follows, then, that sport managemennclude instruction about sexist language in the curriculum and should encourage the use of nonsexist (inclusive) language. More importantly, if contemporary sport management students are going to become agents of change, they must adopt inclusive language. Recent research has revealed that some sport management students are resistant to nonsexist language (Parks & Roberton, 1998). The purpose of this study, therefore, was to discover teaching strategies that would be effective in eliminating this resistance. We asked 164 undergraduate students (71 women, 93 men) in an introductory sport management course to propose ideas for persuading people to change from sexist to nonsexist language. …