Women in sports history: the more things change, the more they stay the same?

Carol A. Osborne, Fiona Skillen*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
322 Downloads (Pure)


In this piece we broadly reflect upon the progress made in the production and reception of women’s sports history during the past ten years in the UK. In doing so, we argue that the sources generated via interests in the present are likely to have an impact on the future content of women’s sports history. We make our observations about the treatment of women in contemporary sport based upon our respective interactions with media representations, but necessarily as critical sports historians we are not only concerned with the ways in which the historiography of women’s sport has developed during the past ten years. We are also curious about how women’s sports history might continue to develop in the near and distant future, not least as we anticipate it as written through a broader combination of sources. Although processes of locating women’s narratives and experiences may be little different, ‘finding’ women in a representative range of sports – including those beyond team games and elite participation – may not be any less challenging for those researching in the future as compared to those researching today.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)411-433
Number of pages23
JournalSport in History
Issue number4
Early online date1 Nov 2020
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2020


  • women
  • sport history
  • gender and sport
  • women's sport
  • women's history
  • history
  • COVID-19
  • feminism
  • media representations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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