While doing my research and the creation of my project, it made me think about how it ties into sports history and the readings we have done over the course of the semester. In a sense, the way hockey came about and grew into a sport for national pride for Canada, it also accepted all people and genders in a male dominated sport. It made me compare it to Fútbolera. I couldn’t help but think about how Elsey and Nadel brought the female aspect of soccer and how it is a sense lost to history as not many see how dominate the women of these soccer clubs in Latin America were. It is similar to the Canadian women’s hockey teams. People barely know about the dominance of women’s hockey throughout the 90’s as Canada would go on a tear winning gold several times. Just like in our panel discussion, we got to realize that the history is rich and full of dominate women, its just lost to the annals of history. But, it also allows us to see how women were able to grow the sport and show that women can be just as good, if not better at times than the men playing. This led me to finding an article on JSTOR called, “It’s Part of the Game”: Physicality and the Production of Gender in Women’s Hockey”
This article gave me insight into the struggles that women have faced over the years to even start their own hockey leagues and clubs. These women challenged masculinity in their sports and brought the eyes of the world upon them. Time and time again throughout my research, I have only noticed how the men had all of the praise on them, until the past two or three decades. As historians go back, they begin to realize they had it all wrong. This has caused my research to find its own spot in part to telling the story of women in sports. Hockey itself brought everyone together. Canadian hockey’s can’t be seen as just by men, but by the women itself. When it comes to expanding on the readings and what we discussed, it helps tear down the shroud of a male dominated world of athletics. Time and time again we have celebrated these larger than life athletes that have been mainly male, up until recently. Women like Sue Bird, Serena Williams, etc. are now praised and are often compared to male counterparts and often held in high regard. Throughout the semester we talk about how sports have been male dominated and how women are often times turned from the more “manlier” sports like basketball, hockey, and football. Even recently we have seen the first female kicker in NCAA history take the field. My research has led me to believe that times are changing and women are being held in a bigger spotlight in the sporting world. Finally, I think my research has led me to believe that both hockey and the sporting world across the Americas has brought so many people across the world for their love sport and the chance for misrepresented groups to shine through and take center stage. When it comes to fitting into how the class works and what its about, it creates a national identity for a country that brings them together for the love of one sport. Throughout my research, I found that hockey was almost a unifier throughout the worlds worst times for Canada. From the horrors of both world wars, the trying times of the Cold War, and even in todays time with COVID running wild, the sport was there to distract the world and its home country from the worst. Overall, it was amazing to see how hockey brought Canada together and how they were able to push their women into the spotlight. It led the way for dominance and a unifying sport that has a bright future.