Football Feminism: Global Governance Perspectives

20:1 International Journal of Constitutional Law 272, (2022)

Posted: 11 Jan 2024

See all articles by Michele Krech

Michele Krech

University of Chicago Law School; European University Institute - Department of Law (LAW); New York University School of Law

J. H. H. Weiler

New York University School of Law

Date Written: May 10, 2022

Abstract

This Symposium explores a unique and relatively understudied intersection of global law and governance, on the one hand, and gender and feminist theory, on the other—which we label “football feminism.” Football (soccer), we hazard to claim, occupies a place in the global space unlike any other cultural/economic phenomenon. Given the mass global consumption and veneration of football, it plays a particularly powerful role in shaping, validating, and entrenching gender relations far beyond the sport, all around the world. Football matters in this way, whether we like it or not, so its governance should attract scholarly feminist critique. Significantly, the primary regulator of football is a private organization headquartered in Zurich, controlling billions of dollars and a worldwide network of national football associations. The “constitution” of this organization—the FIFA Statutes—includes a prohibition on gender discrimination and, as of quite recently, commitments to promote women in football and to respect all internationally recognized human rights. However, many questions remain as to the specific meaning of these good-governance and human-rights norms in the context of football, as well as to the seriousness of the commitment to their actual implementation and the availability of mechanisms for enforcing them vis-à-vis the powerful private organizations that govern the sport. Together, these organizations embody a distinctive form of global governance that raises particular questions of legality, legitimacy, democracy, transparency, and accountability. The contributions to this Symposium consider some of these questions as they relate to gender inequality in football, both on and off the pitch.

Keywords: Transnational Law; Feminist Legal Theory; Sport Governance

Suggested Citation

Krech, Michele and Weiler, Joseph H. H., Football Feminism: Global Governance Perspectives (May 10, 2022). 20:1 International Journal of Constitutional Law 272, (2022), Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4626196

Michele Krech (Contact Author)

University of Chicago Law School ( email )

1111 E 60th St
Chicago, IL 60637
United States

European University Institute - Department of Law (LAW)

Via Bolognese 156 (Villa Salviati)
50-139 Firenze
ITALY

New York University School of Law ( email )

40 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States

Joseph H. H. Weiler

New York University School of Law ( email )

40 Washington Square South
New York, NY 10012-1099
United States

HOME PAGE: http://rb.gy/1wcz8w

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