Photo of Dawn FletcherDawn Fletcher

MA Mass Communications, University of Leicester, 2013
PGCE English, Sheffield Hallam University, 2002
BA English Language and Literature, University of Reading, 2000

email : DFletcher1@sheffield.ac.uk

twitter : @bobusmaximus

Thesis title / scope of research

"Men's Roller Derby: Gender, Identity, and Masculinity"

My doctoral research challenges the dominant discourse of modern roller derby as a women-only space. Through an ethnography of a men’s roller derby team, this research offers an alternative view of the sport, as seen through the lens of male participants. The key questions it asks are:

  1. How do the identities of male roller derby players develop, and in what ways do they differ from mainstream, accepted notions of what it means to be both an athlete, and a man?
  2. In what ways does roller derby offer an ‘alternative’ to the gender differences in mainstream sport, and what possibilities can the sport suggest for gender equality and democratization in sport?
  3. What are the impacts of professionalization and seriousness on the supposed inclusivity of the sport?

Supervisor(s)

  • Primary: Dr Lorna Warren
  • Secondary: Dr Tom Clark

Research interests / other experience

  • Identity
  • Men and masculinities
  • Gender inclusivity in sport
  • Ethnography
  • Insider research
  • Situated knowledges
  • Situational Analysis

Organising Committee of Identity and Social Change, May 22nd 2015, Department of Sociological Studies Annual Postgraduate Conference, University of Sheffield

Co-convenor of the Postgraduate Gender Research Network and Postgraduate Gender Reading Group, 2015-present.

Co-editor of student-led journal The Sheffield Student Journal for Sociology (http://sheffieldsociologyjournal.weebly.com), 2015-present.

Conference presentations

02.09.2016 This is Men’s Derby: The Everyday Practices of Masculinity in Men’s Roller Derby. Paper presented at the BSA Sport Study Group Forum, York St John’s University, York, UK.
21.06.2016 An Exploration of the Challenges within ‘Intimate Insider’ Research. Paper presented at the Doctoral Academy Conference 2016, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK.
17.06.2016  This is Men’s Derby: The Everyday Practices of Masculinity in Men’s Roller Derby. Poster presentation at the NWDTC ESRC PGR Conference, ACC Liverpool, Liverpool, UK.
15.06.2016 This is Men’s Derby: The Everyday Practices of Masculinity in Men’s Roller Derby. Poster presentation at the WRDTC Spring Conference, University of Leeds, Leeds, UK.
19.05.2016 Truth and Knowledge in Insider Participant Research. Paper presented at ‘Breaking Boundaries’, the Department of Sociological Studies PGR Conference 2016, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK.
07.04.2016 Men’s Roller Derby as a Transformative Practice. Paper presented at ‘Global Societies: Fragmenting and Connecting’, the Annual British Sociological Association Conference, Aston University, Birmingham, UK.
23.10.2015 “Not Just a Girls’ Sport”: Gender, Identity, and Masculinity in Men’s Roller Derby. Poster presentation at the WRDTC Welcome Event, Bramall Lane, Sheffield, UK.
22.05.2015  “…Or Are You Just Pleased to See Me?” The Role of the Boutfit in Men’s Roller Derby. Paper presented at ‘Identity and Social Change’, the Department of Sociological Studies PGR Conference 2015, University of Sheffield, Sheffield, UK.

Scholarships and Awards

ESRC +3 White Rose DTC Studentship