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Artistic Impressions: Figure Skating, Masculinity, and the Limits of Sport Paperback – February 19, 2011

4.8 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

‘Artistic Impressions is an important book and a long-overdue contribution to the history of figure skating.’

(Paul J. DeLoca Journal of Sport History; vol 40:02: 2013)

'It was the movement to music that first drew me to figure skating, and it is still that aspect which fascinates me today. But like all young male figure skaters, I had to endure the social taboo of participating in the sport. I enjoyed reading Mary Louise Adams' remarkable book about the history of our sport. I was intrigued by how gender differences affected the direction of figure skating from the time of Sonia Henie to the present.' (Louis Stong, Skate Canada Hall of Famer and consultant; coach of World Champions Barbara Underhill, Paul Martini, and Kurt Browning)

‘This book offers an excellent history of the sport with respect to gender… Artistic Impressions should be a required reading for anyone involved in the marketing and development of figure skating.’ (Melanie Hoyt International Figure Skating Magazine; August 2011)

‘It is full of fascinating detail….I learned a great deal and was impressed at how engagingly Adams explained some of the specificities of the transition from a set of sporting activities being embedded in masculinity to one so strongly inflected with femininity… Adams succeeds in putting figure skating onto the agenda of the history of sport.’ (Kath Woodword Sport in History, vol 32:01:2012)

‘Mary Louise Adams offers a thoughtful and complex discussion about sport, gender, and sexuality. …Artistic Impressions is an excellent fusion of historical research and sociological analysis.’ (Douglas A Brown Sociology of Sport Journal, vol 29:01:2012)

Review

I thoroughly enjoyed Artistic Impressions, Mary Louise Adams' unparalleled history of figure skating. Her account of the sport's changing composition will take most readers by surprise, while her exploration of skating's gendered history breaks new analytical ground. Impressively researched and engagingly written, Artistic Impressions reflects Adams' in-depth knowledge and appreciation of both figure skating and gender studies. (Nancy Theberge, Departments of Kinesiology and Sociology, University of Waterloo)
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division (February 19, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1442611715
  • ISBN-13: 978-1442611719
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.8 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,714,088 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Marilyn Piety Foley on September 7, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Figure skating is generally considered an effete sport, so readers will be surprised to learn that it was originally practiced almost exclusively by men. Adams looks at the issue of how skating came to be considered a sport for women and the effects this has had on the discipline as a whole. This is a matter of serious concern for people who love skating and fear that its reputation as a sport for women discourages young men from taking it up. Artistic Impressions: Figure Skating, Masculinity, and the Limits of Sport is the first book to take a serious scholarly look at how gender is conceived within the skating community and how this affects the sport. Adams succeeds masterfully in depicting the challenges presented to the sport by its artificially constrained conception of what constitutes masculinity and femininity. The book is well researched and its claims are well documented. It's quite simply a treasure trove for fans of skating who are interested in this issue, as well as for sociologists and others who are interested in gender issue more generally. What is more, it's a good read and that is a rarity among scholarly works. I cannot recommend it highly enough!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very insightful analysis of the development of place occupied by figure skating in the cultural landscape since its inception, in particular its evolution from a pastime activity for upper-class men to the competitive female-dominated sport it is today. In addition, the author presents a very complete and carefully documented history of figure skating, compiling citations from hundreds of sources spanning more than 200 years.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Though written for a popular audience, the authors scholarly approach shines through. This is a fascinating exploration of the history of figure skating through the lenses of gender and sexuality. Well worth the read.
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By Leah Yeom on September 21, 2014
Format: Paperback
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