No Place for a Girl? Women as Sports Reporters from the Gilded Age to the Roaring Twenties

Abstract

This thesis examines some of the first women to write about sports for print media from 1870 to 1920. It also explains the social, economic and cultural circumstances from which early women sports journalists emerged.

The thesis discusses the evolution of reporting as a profession and shows that the birth of this new occupation increased opportunities for women in the newspaper industry; demonstrates how the rise of organized sports, and changing attitudes towards them, affected women’s ability to participate in, be fans of, and write about sports; and introduces three women sportswriters of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries – Maria Morgan, Ella Black and Ina Eloise Young – as well as explains the different strategies and mechanisms they used in order to achieve success in a male-dominated field where their presence was very much contested.

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