Greetings from the road! I am currently wrapping up my trip to the 2016 Martial Arts Studies Conference at Cardiff University and am on my way back to the London. Given my limited time and internet access we will be once again dipping into the pages of the latest issue of Martial Arts Studies. Kung Fu Tea will resume its normal posting schedule during the fourth week of July.
In the mean time I am very happy to bring you Allyson Quinney’s article “Gender, Fighters and Framing on Twitter: The @UFC and Third Wave Feminism? Who Woulda Thought?” This is a timely addition to an important area of the martial arts studies literature. It is also a great example of the power of social media analysis to drill further into the social discourses that surround the modern martial arts.
Click here to read: “Gender, Fighters and Framing on Twitter”
Most professional sports, such as hockey, tennis, and basketball, separate men’s and women’s sports leagues. In 2013, the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) disrupted this pattern by showcasing its first women’s mixed martial arts (MMA) fight in a once male-only fight league. While the UFC’s inclusion of female fighters is a step forward for gender equality, the change does not come without issues. This essay focuses on the framing of female UFC fighters on Twitter over a four year period. Through an intersectional feminist analysis, it examines how Twitter users frame female fighters’ bodies in relation to gender, race, class, and sexuality. It argues that there is an imbalance in attention paid to female fighters in regards to gender, race, class, and sexuality, and this constructs contradictory messaging about feminism, female fighters’ bodies, and the UFC on Twitter.
About the Author
Allyson Quinney received her Masters in Journalism from the University of British Columbia and she begins her PhD at Florida State University in the fall of 2016.