The Paralympics’ Representation Problem

by Vilissa Thompson  As someone who enjoys sports and has paid closer attention to adaptive sports and disabled athletes, something profound stood out: the over-whiteness of everything. With the Paralympic Games in its fifth day, I wanted to explore how the lack of diversity played a critical role as to who gets the opportunity to make… Read More

Kare Adenegan: Young, Gifted and Black

by Shane Thomas When Laverne Cox began to achieve a level of fame that made her a regular interview subject, a common question she had to field was whether, as a black trans woman, she saw herself as a role model. Cox rejected the label, before adding the caveat, “but I do like the term possibility… Read More

George Quarcoo: The Absent Paralympian

by Wendy-Ann Clarke  When George Quarcoo immigrated to Canada from Ghana in 2007, aged 12, he never thought he would become one of Canada’s fastest T12 (visually impaired) sprinters. Wearing only jeans and a t-shirt, Quarcoo – along with his father and three siblings – walked out of the airport in Toronto on that crisp November… Read More

The Paralympics Isn’t Great Sport With Caveats. It’s Great Sport

by Shane Thomas  In the days after the Closing Ceremony of the Rio Olympics, the media narrative centred around the Brazilian party being over, with the nation now having to deal with the residue of the Olympic circus. Except the circus isn’t over yet. The Olympics may be finished, but the Rio 2016 tome has further… Read More

The Women’s Olympics

by Christienna Fryar One of the prominent Cassandra stories leading into the Rio Olympics was the decision some famous male athletes took to skip the Games. Most notably in golf, with luminaries like Rory McIlroy and Jordan Spieth opting to spend their summers elsewhere. However, the panic around these absences was based upon a false assumption… Read More

Caster Semenya and the South African clapback

by Kiri Kankhwende She’s dangerous on the bend. Like Usain Bolt, Caster Semenya tends to surge past her opponents just as they have reached their physical limits, rounding the final turn into the last 100 metres of the race, before charging ahead to win. At some point, Semenya is expected to break the women’s 800… Read More

Gabby Douglas Did Not Need To Be Discarded For Simone Biles To Succeed

We cannot encourage a culture where only one member of a marginalised group is reserved a platform by Chan Maroon The public spotlight can often be cruel towards those aiming for success. In these Olympics, it has been particularly cruel for gymnast, Gabby Douglas. Douglas was thrust into the public consciousness after her winning display… Read More

It’s Not About The Genes Stupid

by Ahmed Olayinka Sule  In the aftermath of Usain Bolt’s victory in the Olympic men’s 100 metre final, Murad Ahmed of the Financial Times wrote an article titled “Usain Bolt and why Jamaican sprinters are so fast“, in which he addressed the issue of Jamaica’s sprinting dominance. However, rather than analyse the various factors contributing… Read More

It’s time to address the persistent stereotype that ‘Black people can’t swim’

by Christienna Fryar  The swimming competition at these Olympics was exceptional, and in a meet of dazzling racing, nail-biting finishes, and unexpected medallists, there was no more important a finish than when Simone Manuel surged at the end of the 100 metre freestyle, tying Penny Oleksiak for gold. Manuel became the first black woman to win… Read More

Allyson Felix demonstrates that elite sport has virtues beyond trophies

by Shane Thomas  Many athletes have inspired awe at the Rio Olympics, but none have done so with as much grace as Allyson Felix. Looking for a fourth Olympic title last night, Felix finished second in the 400 metres, denied gold by Shaunae Miller’s best Indiana Jones impersonation on the line. “We sometimes project our problems… Read More