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Title:Embodying scales of Filipina/o American sporting life: transnational sporting cultures and practices in the Filipina/o diaspora
Author(s):Arnaldo, Constancio R
Director of Research:Manalansan, Martin F.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Manalansan, Martin F.
Doctoral Committee Member(s):Lugo, Alejandro; Rana, Junaid; Cacho, Lisa M.; Rodriguez, Richard T.
Department / Program:Anthropology
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Social Sciences
Anthropology of Sport
Race and Ethnicity
Filipino Americans
Abstract:This multi-sited ethnographic study examines how Filipina/o Americans take up sporting cultures and practices in Southern California in the twenty-first century. Sporting cultures and practices broadly refers to playing, actively engaging, and consuming sports. Filipina/o Americans have long been involved in sports since the onset of U.S. colonialism in the Philippines and throughout their migration to, and settlement in the U.S. Despite this legacy, scholarly accounts have thus far neglected how sports are central to the Filipina/o American experience. I emphasize how sports figure prominently in the everyday lives of Filipina/o Americans by documenting the multiple sporting spaces they navigate, including internet sports websites, basketball gyms, sports tournaments, Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao family fight nights, Pacquiao boxing matches, and social media spaces. In particular, my work explores how power circulates across intersecting categories of difference, including, race, class, gender, and sexuality as they correspond with sport discourses, embodied meanings/gestures, spatialized practices and sporting ideologies and traditions. I argue that Filipina/o Americans’ involvement in sports provide complicated ways of understanding formations of identity, feelings of belonging, and claims to nationalism. Juxtaposing everyday sporting spaces and arenas, I move to the spectacular sporting body of Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao, an eight-time world boxing champion from the Philippines. Drawing from fieldwork conducted in Las Vegas, NV, Arlington, TX, and Southern California, I examine how Pacquiao functions as a transnational icon for Filipina/o Americans. Pacquiao’s success in the “manly art” of boxing has fundamentally challenged stereotypes of Asian bodies as “inferior,” “weak” and “effeminate.” In this way, Pacquiao embodies the literal and metaphoric possibility of Filipina/o American transnational belongings and desires; through affective desires for fulfillment, success, and self-realization. It is through these transnational and digitized renderings that Pacquiao’s racialized masculinity simultaneously becomes a site of celebration, conflict, and contradiction.  
Issue Date:2015-04-20
Rights Information:Copyright 2015 Constancio Arnaldo
Date Available in IDEALS:2015-07-22
Date Deposited:May 2015

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