Call for Papers | Women’s Soccer in the United States | Special issue of Sport in Society


Focus and Topics

The U.S. Women’s National Team victory in the 2015 Women’s World Cup brought heightened attention to women’s soccer in the United States. As Andrei Markovits and Stephen Hellerman argue, soccer occupies a space of “exceptionalism” in the United States, emerging as a top participation sport among girls and women precisely because of the sport’s historical marginalization from the institutional center of men’s elite sport.

Yet the growth of U.S. women’s soccer has also been both a cause and effect of its cultural ties to white, heterosexual, middle class suburban families. Women’s soccer is thus a site where complex and intersectional identities, meanings, and inequalities are forged and contested.

This special issue of Sport in Society seeks to investigate the development and status of women’s soccer in the United States, exploring how the sport’s historical origins in the United States inform its play at the elite level. It looks to explore a range of issues, including:

  • The organization of the women’s game and organizational challenges in the U.S.
  • Implications of growing commodification and corporatization
  • The relationships between women’s soccer and feminisms
  • Quantity and quality of media coverage across both traditional or mainstream and online or digital platforms
  • Constructions of and challenges to gender, racial, class and sexual stratification
  • The position of U.S. soccer within the global women’s game.

Manuscript Submissions

Prospective contributors should send abstracts to the Special Issue Editor no later than 15 December 2015. Feedback will be sent in January 2016. Full manuscripts should be submitted by 15 June 2016 at In the submission process, authors should note submission for the special issue in a cover letter.

Manuscripts should be 7000-8000 words (inclusive of references, endnotes, tables, and figures) and follow the Instructions for Authors. All manuscripts will be subject to peer review under the supervision of the Special Issue Editor and Editor-in-Chief. Expressions of interest, abstracts for consideration, and questions may be directed to the Special Issue Editor Rachel Allison at

Editorial information

Guest Editor: Rachel Allison, Mississippi State University

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