Popular Culture and the Women Fandom of English Premier League Football in Eldoret, Kenya

Authored by: Solomon Waliaula

Routledge Handbook of African Popular Culture

Print publication date:  May  2022
Online publication date:  May  2022

Print ISBN: 9780367483869
eBook ISBN: 9781003080855
Adobe ISBN:


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This chapter is based on a cultural trend that has been described as the Eldoret-based women fandom of English Premier League football. It has been perceived as one of the local trends in popular culture, especially as from around the turn of the millennium. The cultural trend is considered significant in the context of gender identification in at least two perspectives. Firstly, in patriarchal societies such as Eldoret, football fandom is generally considered as a masculine leisure activity. Secondly, in these parts, the televisual spectatorship of English Premier League football has tended to be associated with public consumption of leisure, which is also presumed to be a masculine domain. Through a long-term ethnography, this study has explored the social conditions, cultural circuits and products of the women fandom of English Premier League football in Eldoret. One of the major findings has been that the said fandom was part of the strategies adopted by young women in specific social conditions to navigate the forces that sought to predetermine their gender identities. Secondly, it has been established that in the above-mentioned process, the young woman not only performed desired gender identities but also contributed to the production of culture.

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