'Get fit - keep fit'? Exercise in the female life-cycle in Scotland, 1930-1970

Macrae, Eilidh H.R. (2013) 'Get fit - keep fit'? Exercise in the female life-cycle in Scotland, 1930-1970. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Printed Thesis Information: https://eleanor.lib.gla.ac.uk/record=b2979871


This thesis looks into the complex relationships which women have had with their bodies throughout the twentieth century. It uses oral history evidence, medical sources, and official government material to examine women’s experiences of and access to physical recreation and sport throughout the life-cycle. It argues that despite the official view that throughout the twentieth century women’s sporting bodies were essentially fragile bodies, unsuited to competitive and manly sports, there were a number of alternative discourses available to women during these years. Women who had strong sporting identities, and confidence in their own physical abilities, were able to test the capabilities of their bodies and maintain their exercise participation throughout adolescence, menstruation, pregnancy and during motherhood, despite the advice of state officials, and many doctors, which advised them against participation. This thesis makes a powerful contribution to what at present is a largely uncharted historical landscape of female participation in and experience of physical recreation in Scotland and the UK in the mid-twentieth century. In a global context, it contributes to our understanding of the relationship between the female body and physical activity throughout the physically and culturally guided female life-cycle, and the particular ways in which women interacted with sport and exercise throughout the twentieth century.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: Women, body, exercise, Scotland, life-cycle
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DA Great Britain
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
Colleges/Schools: College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Economic and Social History
Supervisor's Name: Gordon, Prof. Eleanor and Abrams, Prof. Lynn
Date of Award: 2013
Depositing User: Dr Eilidh H R Macrae
Unique ID: glathesis:2013-4217
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 09 May 2013 14:13
Last Modified: 30 Apr 2018 08:05
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/4217

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