Baron Pierre de Coubertin’in Olimpizm Felsefesinde Kadın: Nedenler ve Sonuçlar

Aybek A., Yıldıran İ.

Uluslararası Toplumsal Cinsiyet ve Spor Sempozyumu, Ankara, Turkey, 4 - 05 September 2014, pp.98

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Summary Text
  • City: Ankara
  • Country: Turkey
  • Page Numbers: pp.98


It was the aim of this study to discuss the reasons and results of the prevention of women’s participations in Olympic Games in late 19th century, recreated by Baron Pierre de Coubertin with the mission of “humanistic excellence and international peace via sport”. Literature review technique, considered to be one of the qualitative research methods, was used in the study. In this context, data concerning the process of the participation of women in Modern Olympic Games were obtained through a detailed review of Baron Pierre de Coubertin’s articles, books and printed speeches and other related sources. Olympism is a philosophy of life aiming to raise a compatible, decent and peaceful ideal man via sport. However, the targeted ideal man who would be presented as a role model in Olympic Games excluded the woman right from the start, which indicates that the ideal man was identified as man. As a matter of fact, once on a radio speech, Coubertin would describe Olympic hero as an adult man and stress that he disapproves of participation of women in Olympic Games, free for everybody. The roles of the woman in Olympic Games should have been to engarland the winners as it was in the past. Gender roles Coubertin’s philosophy of Olympism foresaw are clear but open to discussion. The common belief is that the prevention of the participation of married woman has been inspired by ancient Olympic Games. Yet, the main reasons are the woman’s manner and her social roles. Coubertin believes that it is not possible for women to take part in competitions because of their sensitive emotional manners. In fact, he is not opposed to the woman’s participation in sport, but he is opposed to the idea that women present themselves in the free competitions. Furthermore, he is worried that the equality of man and woman in his age would affect the man authority in family and society. As a result of this, Olympic Games has been given a role of sustaining the role of man since the late 19th century modernization process accelerating against the threat of changing the daily routine of the gender role. Women’s winning right of participation for modern Olympic Games and her being put in the position of otherness by the philosophy of its founder came true by surpassing the obstacles the reasons of which are not known. In spite of Coubertin, women succeeded to penetrate into the 1900 Olympic Games in two branches. They organized themselves in a short time with the woman movement developed by the leadership of sport woman Alice Milliat and they organized the first women Olympic Games in 1921 and the first women world games and they became an effective power against the movement excluding them. The process, specifically after the death of Coubertin, caused to free the obstacles of the participation of women by IOC and led to be almost equal today. Finally, it has been concluded that traditional, religious, social, and biological reasons play an important role for excluding the women in Olympic Games. However, it causes the women to increase their awareness on rights, equality and notion. In spite of Coubertin, women participation in Olympic Games resulted in increasing number of women.