Degree Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Science (BS)

Department

Communications

First Advisor

Peter Oehlkers

Abstract

Stream documentary here: https://youtu.be/ZugjWOrueiU

This documentary examines the current state of women’s skateboarding during a pivotal time in the industry. Social media has allowed what was once a small, marginalized community to blossom into something much greater. In addition, the induction of skateboarding into the next Summer Olympics places the sport at an interesting crossroads. I begin with a personal reflection of my own journey in skateboarding, acknowledging how the lack of visibility for women and the male dominance made participating in the sport intimidating and difficult. I transition to talk about how once I began meeting other women skateboarders and building a network of friends, it allowed me to find a sense of belonging in a community that was diverse, encouraging, resilient and inspiring. Through eleven formal interviews, including two with professional skateboarders, I discover through the skater’s perspective what makes the women’s skateboard community unique, what barriers women in skateboarding still face, and where women’s skateboarding stands today. I address the gender divide that exists in skateboarding, and I gather various perspectives on what further changes will help to erase the gender divide and further equality in skateboarding. My interviewees discuss where they see skateboarding going in the years to come and how the Olympics will impact the sport. Finally, each woman discusses the greatest thing they’ve gained from skateboarding and what makes them continue. The documentary is accompanied by three montages of skateboarding clips and original music by the artist Jaguar Sun.

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