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Active BodiesA History of Women’s Physical Education in Twentieth-Century America$
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Martha H. Verbrugge

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780195168792

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195168792.001.0001

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“It’s just the gym”

“It’s just the gym”

Female Physical Educators, 1950–2005

(p.174) 7 “It’s just the gym”
Active Bodies

Martha H. Verbrugge

Oxford University Press

Chapter 7 (the counterpart to Chapter 1) examines the status of white and black female physical educators, coaches, and administrators in academic institutions as their profession matured and women’s sports underwent a revolution (following the enactment of Title IX in 1972). Covering several generations of female teachers in grades K-12 through college-level, the chapter considers their backgrounds, training and credentials, and workplace challenges. Many instructors and coaches dealt with low status, multiple responsibilities, entrenched homophobia, and new administrative structures in athletics and physical education. The chapter asks why the field’s marginalization of “different” members persisted, even as gender and racial equality improved elsewhere in American society during the second half of the twentieth century.

Keywords:   women physical educators, women coaches, Title IX, gender equality, racial equality, homophobia

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