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Cover for It's All for the Kids

It's All for the Kids

Gender, Families, and Youth Sports

Michael Messner


List Price: 29.95*
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Today, in a world quite different from the one that existed just thirty years ago, both girls and boys play soccer, baseball, softball, and other youth sports. Yet has the dramatic surge in participation by girls contributed to greater gender equality? In this engaging study, leading sociologist Michael A. Messner probes the richly complex gender dynamics of youth sports. Weaving together vivid first-person interviews with his own experiences as a volunteer for his sons' teams, Messner finds that despite the movement of girls into sports, gender boundaries and hierarchies still dominate, especially among the adults who run youth sports. His book widens into a provocative exploration of why youth sports matter—how they play a profound role in shaping gender, class, family, and community.

Praise For It's All for the Kids: Gender, Families, and Youth Sports

“Amazing. . . . A heartfelt, perceptive, and thoroughly enjoyable study.”
— Choice

“This book is a treat.”
— Howard P. Chudacoff

“Messner’s engaging writing style draws the reader into the fine details of what he observes.”
— Men & Masculinities

University of California Press, 9780520257108, 288pp.

Publication Date: March 18, 2009

About the Author

Michael A. Messner is Professor of Sociology and Gender Studies at the University of Southern California and the author of several books including Taking the Field: Women, Men, and Sports.