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Female anglers in a predominantly male sport: Portrayals in five popular fishing-related magazines.

Kim Bain-Moore galvanized public interest as the first female competitor in the 2009 Bassmaster Classic fishing tournament. To examine the extent to which women were depicted by the fishing media during and after this watershed event, as well as how they were portrayed, we analyzed the content of five for-profit, fishing-related magazines from 2009–2012. Female anglers were numerically underrepresented relative to a national estimate of participation in the USA (27%); they were depicted on just 10% of covers and in 9% and 6% of fishing and ‘hero’ images, respectively. Women authored only 1% of feature articles and were often sexualized, noted for physical beauty, or portrayed as obstacles to fishing for men. More positive portrayals included women as experts on fishing or ecology, competent anglers, or valued fishing partners to men. However, the last reinforces fishing as a male-centric activity, particularly when there were virtually no instances of women fishing alone or with other women. Further, the emphasis on the performance ethic in these magazines may dissuade women, who tend to be motivated to fish more by social factors than men. These findings contribute to research on how the media influences the socialization of women in predominantly male sports/leisure.