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Measuring up : status and stigma within a special olympic floor hockey team 1990

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"MEASURING UP: STATUS AND STIGMA WITHIN A SPECIAL OLYMPIC FLOOR HOCKEY TEAM" An Ethnographic Study By JO-ANN ZYLA P.E., The University of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1978 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF PHYSICAL EDUCATION in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (School of Physical Education and Recreation) We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA A p r i l 1990 © Jo-Ann Zyla, 1990 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of P H Y S I C A L EDUCATION AND RECREATION The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Date APRIL 28, 1990 DE-6 (2/88) ABSTRACT The purpose of t h i s thesis was to discover the Special Olympic f l o o r hockey athletes' understanding of the coaches', teams' and players' goals, p r i o r i t i e s and expectations. T r a d i t i o n a l l y , the viewpoint of the mentally retarded has been represented by professionals and parents on the "outside". The emphasis on the athletes' perspective focused on the " i n s i d e r " point of view. The rationale was that the r e s u l t s might be b e n e f i c i a l in improving the leadership q u a l i t i e s of the B.C. Special Olympics f l o o r hockey coach and in improving athlete/coach r e l a t i o n s h i p s , with the potential r e s u l t of maximizing the personal growth, development and performance potential of athletes. The question posed was: do the coaches and athletes each have a theory of behaviour that i s bound and defined by t h e i r respective cultures (the dominant culture and mental retardation subculture). The subjects consisted of approximately t h i r t y members of a Special Olympic f l o o r hockey team ranging in age from nineteen to forty six years. Four members were female and twenty six were male. They were studied ethnographically u t i l i z i n g the techniques of p a r t i c i p a n t observation and informal interview in varied settings. The study was conducted from early January through mid A p r i l , 1988, and consisted of three phases: orientation to e s t a b l i s h rapport and to allow time to blend into the sport setting; observation/conversation and the more focused phase consisting of informal directed interviews. Data e l i c i t e d revealed themes related to s o c i a l i s a t i o n , stigma and sport culture. S o c i a l i s a t i o n and the dominant culture examined primary and secondary s o c i a l i s a t i o n , s o c i a l stock of knowledge and relevance structures. Impression management, front and back stage performances are strategies employed by the mentally retarded to manage tension. Sport culture i s an avenue for the athletes to learn about the s o c i a l stock of knowledge and the relevance structures of the dominant culture. Dealing with stigma i s central in the dai l y l i v e s of the mentally retarded and i s a constant challenge because i t i s dependent on the interpretations of others...intersubjective r e a l i t y . Passing and covering are two of the coping strategies u t i l i z e d by the mentally retarded. Myths concerning the athletes emerged gradually, revealing that coaches and athletes each have a theory of behaviour that i s bound and defined by t h e i r respective cultures. Of sign i f i c a n c e to Special Olympics i s the value of uncovering and understanding dominant c u l t u r a l assumptions and biases in the context of interacting with a subculture such as the Special Olympic athletes, p o t e n t i a l l y r e s u l t i n g in more e f f e c t i v e athlete/coach i n t e r a c t i o n . i i i TABLE OF CONTENTS ABSTRACT i i TABLE OF CONTENTS iv ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS v i INTRODUCTION 1 Biography 1 CHAPTER I: Literature Review 6 History 6 1950's 7 International (Denmark) 7 Canada (Ontario) 8 B r i t i s h Columbia (Vancouver) 9 I960'a 10 International (Sweden, U.S.A.) 10 Canada (Ontario) 11 B r i t i s h Columbia (Vancouver) 12 1970's 13 Canada 13 1980's 15 Vancouver • • • 15 Normalisation / D e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n 18 Advocacy 20 Special Olympics 21 Recreation Integration 22 Ethnography and Mental Retardation 26 Summary 38 CHAPTER I I : Conducting the Study 40 The Gatekeeper 41 Informed Consent 41 Role of the Ethnographer 42 Research Design • 45 Three Phases 47 Settings 51 Methodological Reflections 56 CHAPTER I I I : S o c i a l i s a t i o n and the Dominant Culture 60 "I'm upset, but I'm tryin g to deal with i t in a proper way." 61 "Not Being Like a Kid" 69 Impression Management 72 Rapport 76 Front and Back Stage 79 i v Nicknames • B3 "Gordie Howe and Wayne Gretzky He's Not" 84 Sport Culture 100 CHAPTER IV: Stigma 113 Intersubjective Reality 113 Dealing with Stigma 117 Coping Strategies 120 Passing and Covering 121 Gender 126 Seizures • • 127 Phantom Normalcy 128 Language 129 CHAPTER V: Athlete / Coach Interactions - "Myths"understandings 133 BIBLIOGRAPHY 137 APPENDIX A: The Actors 143 The D r i l l e r s (B Team) 143 The Blasters <C Team) 149 APPENDIX B: Practise and Game Schedule 162 APPENDIX C: Question Framework 163 APPENDIX D: Taxonomies 167 APPENDIX E: Ethnoscience Model 182 v ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS Many people contributed to the completion of t h i s t h e s i s . I would l i k e to thank the members of my committee: Dr. E l v i Whittaker, Dr. Robert Sparks and Dr. Richard Mosher for their time, patience and expertise and Dr. Gary S i n c l a i r for his kind and generous counsel. Family, friends and colleagues: Ed, Samantha, Jamie, C e l i a Haig-Brown, Colleen Haney, Mary Lou Stanley, Heather McKay and Shirley Turcotte were a constant source of encouragement and support. I am grateful to Anne T i l l e y who taught me much about the f i e l d of mental retardation. Also, I would l i k e to acknowledge Dan Howe, Executive Director of B.C. Special Olympics for his cooperation in arranging the study. The Special Olympic coaches and, above a l l , the members of the Vancouver Floor Hockey Team have my deepest, most sincere respect and gratitude for sharing so much. v i INTRODUCTION Biography. "None of my early f i e l d experiences were in areas I consciously selected" (Agar, 1980, p. 23). My experience d i f f e r s from Agar in that an i n t e r e s t in Adapted Physical Education was i n i t i a t e d in an undergraduate course in sport sociology when I researched the American Special Olympics. A number of years l a t e r I was involved in a proposal for f i t n e s s programming at Tranquille School, an i n s t i t u t i o n for the mentally handicapped, in Kamloops, B.C.. I had never met a mentally disabled person and f e l t nervous about my a b i l i t y to provide recreation services to a population I knew nothing about and, frankly, one of which I was a f r a i d . It took a long time to gain entry through the bureaucratic organization to the wards, a phenomenon I came to know as "gatekeeping". The experience was an introduction to the e f f e c t s of "bureaucracy on c l i e n t populations", as described in lUi;®§y9£39Y and World View, (Handelman and Ley ton, 1978) a part of the mental retardation service system which exercises a large percentage of control over the l i v e s of the mentally retarded. I remember being puzzled and disturbed about comments such as "they can't go to the gymn after dinner because they always go back to the ward and i t would d i s t r e s s them to change t h e i r routine" I also remember my f i r s t attempts at "programming". The inappropriate preschool music I brought for the f i t n e s s class amused the s t a f f who were assigned to help me - "they l i k e rock i music better". In both cases, nobody asked the c l i e n t . My work on the wards began simultaneously with my volunteer work with Special Olympics. The experiences contrasted. By day I welcomed wards of c l i e n t s ushered in in street clothes (tight b e l t s , pointed shoes) by s t a f f who rewarded them for p a r t i c i p a t i n g with pieces of candy. By night I helped to organize sport programs in school gyms and playing f i e l d s for mentally handicapped people who l i v e d in the community, were appropriately dressed to p a r t i c i p a t e and came and l e f t the program with dignity i n t a c t . A strong desire to e f f e c t change (in the capacity of f i t n e s s opportunities) in that i n s t i t u t i o n was cut short by the closure or d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n of the school. The closure of the i n s t i t u t i o n was c a r r i e d out quickly and I remember the h o s t i l i t y of some parents, s t a f f (who depended on i t f o r t h e i r livelihoods) and members of the community who feared what impact t h i s would have on t h e i r l i v e s . I t seemed i r o n i c that there was resistance "for the sake of the patient" i n changing the routine from walking back to the wards from dinner to going to the gymnasium, yet a decision to move the same people out of the c i t y and into a community elsewhere could be implemented very quickly with seemingly l i t t l e debate on the repercussions. This theme of paternalism versus self-determination or segregation versus integration was to recur many times. I decided to pursue further t r a i n i n g i n the area of mental retardation not r e a l i s i n g the import of the experience. In 1985, having spent a short time as a volunteer and employee with the p r o v i n c i a l Special Olympic head o f f i c e , I enrolled i n graduate studies and was introduced to Ethnography, the method used i n t h i s study. The study proposal was to discover the Special Olympic athletes' understanding of the coaches', teams' and players' goals, p r i o r i t i e s and expectations. The rationale was that the r e s u l t s might be b e n e f i c i a l in improving the leadership q u a l i t i e s of the B.C. Special Olympics f l o o r hockey coach and in improving athlete/coach r e l a t i o n s h i p s , consequently maximizing the personal growth, development and performance potential of athletes. The question posed was: do the coaches and athletes each have a theory of behaviour that i s bound and defined by t h e i r respective cultures (the dominant culture and mental retardation subculture)? My stated assumptions were that the athletes are capable of expressing knowledge about th e i r experiences, f e e l i n g s , perceptions and values, and that t h i s knowledge i s c u l t u r a l l y shared within the group of mentally handicapped athletes. S i m i l a r l y , I assumed that gaining t h i s knowledge would enhance coach t r a i n i n g sessions. I came to know that I was operating under many other culture bound assumptions l a t e r in the study. The research design was ethnographic and the methodology proposed was ethnoscience which u t i l i z e s the techniques of part i c i p a n t observation and informal interview to e l i c i t c u l t u r a l knowledge. I had wanted to implement t h i s methodology in order to r e p l i c a t e James Spradleys' work You Owe Yourself a Drunk or William Whytes' Street Corner Society both of which are r i c h in l i n g u i s t i c d e t a i l . However, problems surfaced with t h i s 3 methodology because many of the athletes had minimal verbal s k i l l s . This happened despite having completed a p i l o t study with a Special Olympic Soccer team during the previous summer in which the team, with one exception, was verbal. I discovered by exposure to many other teams i n game situ a t i o n s and the f i n a l tournament that each team i s by nature i n d i v i d u a l i s t i c . The l i t e r a t u r e review begins with documentation of four decades of s o c i o - p o l i t i c a l changes l o c a l l y , n ationally and i n t e r n a t i o n a l l y and such influence on the l i v e s of the mentally retarded. The p r i n c i p l e of Normalization and i t s ' application through the movements of d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n and mainstreaming i s outlined. Advocacy was key i n championing these movements, i n i t i a l l y as a support for parents, evolving into a device towards self-determinism for the mentally retarded. The objectives and philosophy of Special Olympics i s presented followed by a discussion of the merits of such an organisation and the viewpoints of i t s detractors, advocates of integrated recreation. Neither viewpoint i s that of the mentally retarded. The ethnographic l i t e r a t u r e reviewed presents an 'emic' or insider perspective of the mentally retarded on various topics such as stigma, coping strategies and competitive sport. Conducting the study involved a description of the early experiences of fieldwork which include contact with the 'gatekeeper', obtaining informed consent and the e t h i c a l implications. The changing r o l e of the ethnographer i s examined. Tensions r e s u l t i n g from operating within two paradigms, 4 positivism and naturalism, i s explained and the research design and settings are deta i l e d . Methodological r e f l e c t i o n s analyze research design problems. S o c i a l i s a t i o n and the dominant culture examines primary and secondary s o c i a l i s a t i o n , s o c i a l stock of knowledge and relevance structures. Impression management, front and back stage performances are strategies employed by the mentally retarded to manage tension. Sport culture i s an avenue for the athletes to learn about the s o c i a l stock of knowledge and relevance structures of the dominant culture. Dealing with stigma i s central i n the da i l y l i v e s of the mentally retarded and i s a constant challenge because i t i s dependent on the interpretations of others...intersubjective r e a l i t y . Passing and covering are two of the coping strategies u t i l i z e d by the mentally retarded and when successful i s termed Phantom Normalcy. CHAPTER I Literature Review History. "Cultures are not s c i e n t i f i c objects.. Culture and our views of i t are produced h i s t o r i c a l l y and are a c t i v e l y contested... culture i s contested, temporal and emergent" ( C l i f f o r d and Marcus, 1986, p. 19). H i s t o r i c a l scribes recorded the attitudes and conditions experienced by the mentally handicapped. It i s certa i n that no account was presented by the people suffering t h i s condition. Tardicide was commonly practised and the mentally handicapped were assigned r o l e s as court j e s t e r s , represented as the 'holy innocent' and committed to asylums throughout the centuries. In the decades just p r i o r to World War Two, Social Darwinist movements resulted i n stigmatic i d e n t i t y for the mentally handicapped. The ideology regarding mental retardation policy s h i f t e d following World War Two creating a t r a n s i t i o n i n stigma connected with the mentally retarded due to an economic, technological and reproductive boom which resulted i n a convergence of events that created a medical issue out of mental retardation rather than "...a concern with deviance..." (Evans, 1983, p. 47). These events included: an increase in the b i r t h of the severely retarded offspring of the "highly educated and a r t i c u l a t e population segments" (Evans, 1983, p. 47); the greater s u r v i v a l rate of these offspring due to improved medical 6 technology; elevated optimism and expanded resources caused by the prosperity of the times and a change in the attitude that retardation was passed on as a family t r a i t to the theory that the causes were genetic or due to diseases such as encephalitis which was influenced by the increase i n the b i r t h of upper and middle c l a s s mentally retarded children. By the 1950s, the mental retardation movement was mainly concerned with providing schools and services f o r the moderately and severely retarded c h i l d (Evans, 1983, p. 48). From 1950 to 1970 parent organisations were responsible for developing many d i r e c t services in l o c a l communities. By the 1980s, the mentally handicapped were becoming s e l f advocates and lobbying change for themselves. What follows i s a breakdown of major events decade by decade on an i n t e r n a t i o n a l , national, and l o c a l l e v e l as related to p o l i c i e s and p r i n c i p l e s concerning the mentally handicapped. The material i s organized i n t h i s way to show the o r i g i n and evolution of these progressive events. l§5Qls lQt§?!Il®tlQD9l (Denmark) This decade produced the advent of parent organisations to improve l i v i n g and education standards of the mentally handicapped. Denmark led the way with the formation of the National Association of Parents in 1951. They lobbied the federal government for improvements in the care system and succeeded i n achieving parent representation at t h i s l e v e l . 7 A principle -that, guided mental retardation policy for the next thirty years was developed in Denmark by Bank-Mikkelsen, head of the Danish Mental Retardation service. The principle: Normalization was defined by him as "...letting the mentally retarded obtain an existence as close to normal as possible " (Wolfensberger, 1972, p. 241). Canada (Ontario) In Canada, a parent formulated the f i r s t organisation for the mentally retarded in 1948 called the Parents Council for Retarded Children (Simmons, 1985). Volunteers provided the impetus behind this organisation. Parents sought each other out for support in understanding their situation. This 'support advocacy' inspired the parents to start their own schools where the public school system did not provide them and to extend their purpose in developing and operating a range of community services. In the same year, the Minister of Education, Mr. Dunlop, amalgamated the mentally retarded associations to form the Ontario Association for Retarded Children (OARC). In the early f i f t i e s , membership in OARC grew from 200 to 900 and professionals started to join (Simmons, 1985). By 1955, the government provided 30?< of the funds needed for the educational programs. Health Minister Dymonds supported the development of smaller mental hospitals as opposed to the large custodial style institutions. His ideology was to "...give the mentally retarded a hand up not a hand out" (Simmons,1985, p. 169) and thus the i n i t i a t i o n of the mental retardation policy 3 which was to provide care (in the way of i n s t i t u t i o n s ) f o r the mentally retarded where family and organisations could not supply i t . But what was not anticipated was the demand exceeding the supply and the ensuing clash between an objecting government and continuing pressure for more services by the OARC (Simmons, 1985). B r i t i s h Columbia (Vancouver) Admission of mentally handicapped persons to i n s t i t u t i o n s increased in the 1940s and 1950s (Adolph, 1987). In 1945, Woodlands school was opened and i t included a teaching s t a f f of f i v e and a recreational therapist whose major goal was to "improve the s o c i a l i s a t i o n of these subnormal ch i l d r e n " (Adolph, 1978, p. 43). There grew a demand fo r admission for children under the age of s i x . B.C. p a r a l l e l e d Ontario i n the formation of an Association for the Mentally Retarded conceived and organised by a parent, Mrs. Leola Purdy. In 1952, the Association f o r the Advancement of Retarded Children was established as a response to the lack of educational opportunity for the severely retarded. One parent from the Vancouver area was personally f a m i l i a r with the l o c a l h i s t o r y . . . " I t just wasn't r i g h t that my daughter couldn't be taught by teachers in the school when I, and I'm not a teacher, could teach her at home." The Mental Defectives Act of 1953 allowed patients to be d i r e c t l y admitted to Woodlands rather than being f i r s t admitted to Essondale (a place f o r the mentally i l l ) . In 1954, the Association received a grant from the government and 9 appointed an executive Director. In 1956 the Education Minister Ray W i l l i s t o n amended the Public Schools Act to allow school boards to fund schools for the mentally retarded. This p o l i t i c a l move was an acknowledgement by the government of i t s r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r educating the retarded. During the 1950's, the Association organized play programs, recreational programs i n the school and, " . . . i n 1957, a young peoples club was formed where square dancing, s o c i a l evenings and games were participated i n " (Vancouver-Richmond Association for the Mentally Retarded, 1977). But u n t i l 1959, the opportunities to p a r t i c i p a t e i n community a c t i v i t i e s were minimal due to an apparent concern for r i s k of injury by Recreation and Parks personnel. In 1959, Tranquille opened as an additional school for the mentally retarded. In the f i r s t few years of operation, over 500 Woodlands patients were transferred to Tranquille. In the same year, a p i l o t workshop was started in a classroom. 19601s International (Sweden, U.S.A.) In d e t a i l i n g the P r i n c i p l e of Normalization i n 1969, Bengt N i r j e , executive d i r e c t o r of the Swedish Association f o r retarded children, stressed the importance of "...making avai l a b l e to a l l mentally retarded people patterns and conditions of everyday l i v i n g which are as close as possible to t h e i r regular circumstances and ways of l i f e of society..." (in Lakin, Bruininks, & Sigford, 1981, p.391). 10 In -the United States during the Kennedy era, many changes occurred such as l e g i s l a t i o n providing ri g h t s for the handicapped and the formation i n 1968 of the F i r s t Special Olympics ( S h e r r i l l , 1986, p.610). Canada (Ontario) In 1962, continued advocacy pressure exerted by the OARC succeeded i n passing B i l l 131, The Retarded Childrens Education Authorities Act, which provided 50% of the necessary funding for the operation of programs i n the public schools systems. The Education Authority, as a r e s u l t , became responsible for the administration of these programs. "This authority consisted of two representatives from l o c a l associations and four from the municipal government" (Simmons, 1985, p. 153). The following year, 1963, the Roberts Report to Dymond emphasized the importance of preserving family and community services. But without advocacy pressure, the Canadian government would not have taken r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for the welfare of the mentally retarded. While Swedish governmental ideology supported the in t e r e s t s of the mentally handicapped, the Canadian government was more interested in p o l i t i c a l advancement and not in cooperating with community organisations (Simmons, 1985). Such community organisations as the OAMR i n s i s t e d on greater representation in mental retardation policy formulation. The r e s u l t was a committee struck consisting of members from both government and the Ontario Association for the Mentally Retarded. 11 Through the impetus of the OAMR the medical nursing care model was replaced by a t r a i n i n g model which was community baaed as opposed to that of custodial care. B r i t i s h Columbia (Vancouver) During the s i x t i e s , the l o c a l association for the mentally retarded was able to provide more services, e f f e c t some measure of attitude change i n the general populace and support the mentally retarded into moving out more within the community. Vocational t r a i n i n g expanded to 200 c l i e n t s being served by the workshops. Contract work provided opportunities for a l l l e v e l s of s k i l l . Workers were paid enough to supplement t h e i r government handicapped allowances. I t s t i l l was d i f f i c u l t to change negative perceptions and attitudes towards the mentally handicapped, thus the attainment of the goal of community l i v i n g and group home establishment was d i f f i c u l t . The f i r s t group home Garry House, was b i t t e r l y opposed by neighbours. The goal was to t r a i n residents to l i v e on t h e i r own. The next step following Garry House was Arlington, a townhouse development which offered semi-independent l i v i n g for 36 retarded adults. Meanwhile, in 1969, the Vancouver Association for Retarded Children and the Kiwania Club brought about change in school board policy which resulted i n education becoming a public r e s p o n s i b i l i t y . As a r e s u l t , the Public School Act was amended by Education Minister Peterson allowing the school boards to provide accomodation for chapter run schools and gave the boards the r i g h t to esta b l i s h and operate t h e i r own classes for the retarded. Oakridge School opened on May 12, 1961 with 113 pupils. It was "Canadas' f i r s t school for the retarded to be b u i l t and administered under a public school authority" (Vancouver-Richmond Association for the Mentally Retarded, 1980, p. 20). During the 60s recreation consisted of bowling, square dancing, swimming, camping and s o c i a l clubs. Recreational a c t i v i t i e s a vailable to the retarded expanded. In Vancouver there were two s o c i a l clubs, at Sunset Memorial and Hastings East community centres. In 1962, the Board of Parks and Recreation expanded t h e i r summer playground program to include the mentally handicapped and i t hired a q u a l i f i e d person to coordinate the a c t i v i t i e s . In B.C. Special Education grew between 1960 and 1970 by 389« (Winzer, 1987, p.10). At t h i s time, recreation took a turn towards normalization with the formation, i n 1971, of a f l o o r hockey team by the Vancouver-Richmond Association. They played Woodlands, David Thompson High, Richmond, Coquitlam Mens club (Vancouver-Richmond Association, 1977). 19701s Canada There were some major international influences on policy development in Canada in the 1970s. The CELDIC report in 1970 was an international document describing childrens needs for comprehensive services i n the areas of education, health welfare and j u s t i c e . Public Law 94-142, the "Education for a l l Handicapped Children Act", which was passed in the United States in 1975, guaranteed free appropriate education to handicapped children and youth. And International year of the c h i l d , i n 1979, promoted the ri g h t s of the c h i l d such that "...any c h i l d p h y s i c a l l y , mentally or s o c i a l l y disadvantaged, s h a l l receive the treatment, education and special services required by his state or s i t u a t i o n " as stated in Goguen, 1980 (Csapo, 1980, p. 176). In Canada from 1970-1980, government policy regarding mental retardation policy s h i f t e d from an emphasis on "...large i n s t i t u t i o n s and custodial care towards smaller i n s t i t u t i o n s , group homes and improved community services" (Simmons, 1985, p. 192). The reasons for the policy change were: the Walter B. W i l l i s t o n report; the development of a conceptual scheme termed Normalization; the establishment of policy m i n i s t r i e s i n the Ontario government and the creation of the Canada Assistance plan which was a method of cost sharing. Scandal involving the injury and death of two inmates of i n s t i t u t i o n s provided impetus for further reform. In 1971, a Toronto lawyer, Walter W i l l i s t o n , was appointed by the Ontario Minister of Health to investigate these incidents and make recommendations for reform. He recommended that large hospital i n s t i t u t i o n s be phased down as quickly as possible and advised home v i s i t i n g and counselling services. Mr. W i l l i s t o n also recommended that every mentally retarded c h i l d should be with his own family u n t i l he reaches adulthood.... Adults should have 14 access to community-based residences located i n population centres and as close as possible to t h e i r homes.... Mentally retarded people should be able to draw on the generic educational, r e c r e a t i o n a l , commercial and professional resources of the community in the same fashion as any other c i t i z e n (Simmons, 1985, p. 194). Mental retardation p o l i c y i n Ontario was further influenced by Wolfensbergers' appointment as v i s i t i n g scholar at the National I n s t i t u t e on Mental Retardation at York University. His i n t e r e s t was in the systematic planning of service systems and implementation of the normalization p r i n c i p l e and of c i t i z e n advocacy. As a "moral entrepreneur" (Simmons, 1985, p. 196) he influenced p o l i t i c i a n s , organisations, parents and volunteers in abandoning scaled down i n s t i t u t i o n s and adopting community integration on a l l l e v e l s . 12iQl§ Vancouver The l o c a l association i n Vancouver during the decade of 1977 to 1987 was increasingly meeting the goals of normalization and integration. There are three integrated preschools. Vocational opportunities are available through a multitude of programs such as workshops, a s o c i a l education program, vocational t r a i n i n g , and work stations. 15 Examples of vocational opport.unlt.ies are: Heroes, a generic food service t r a i n i n g program formed i n 1981; "work stations in industry",1984, designed to take selected c l i e n t s from workshops and into productive and p r o f i t a b l e positions in places such as McDonalds, Lumberland, and the Canadian Red Cross. Community l i v i n g programs broadened by 1979 to include: the Community Apartment program, enabling c l i e n t s to l i v e i n t h e i r own apartments in the community; a semi-independent l i v i n g program e n t a i l i n g supervision from a l i v e - i n house manager; and adult group homes. In accordance with the Normalization P r i n c i p l e , a gradual phasing out of d i r e c t recreation and l e i s u r e services was superseded since 1977 by advocacy and support services. Examples of these are counselling, education, and s k i l l s t r a i n i n g i n l e i s u r e including a one to one l e i s u r e f r i e n d service (Vancouver- Richmond Association f o r Mentally Handicapped People, 35th Annual Report, 1986-1987). In summary, the l i v e s of the mentally handicapped in Canada have been impacted over the past forty years by a m u l t i p l i c i t y of forces unleashed by the economic, technological and reproductive explosion of postwar prosperity. Parents became empowered to advocate for educational and s o c i a l equality by lobbying l o c a l and Federal government. Sweden and Denmark l a i d the 16 philosophical foundation for t h i s Advocacy movement with the formulation of the Normalization P r i n c i p l e . In the United States, progressive l e g i s l a t i v e changes and Special Olympics were introduced by the Kennedys. The subsequent sections d e t a i l the Normalization P r i n c i p l e and i t s implementation by means of d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n and mainstreaming; Advocacy (from Support to S e l f ) ; and Recreation Integration, a depiction of segregated (Special Olympics) as opposed to integrated sport and recreation. 17 Norma 1 i z a t i on/Dei n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n "Policy represents the 'broad plans, general p r i n c i p l e s , and p r i o r i t i e s from which programs stem'..." according to Cronbach et e l (1981) in ( V i t e l l o , 1985, P. 23). Ideology regarding mental retardation policy has s h i f t e d in the l a s t few decades and i s communicated in terms such as d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n , normalization and mainstreaming. Normalization i s a p r i n c i p l e that provided a common impetus to the movements of d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n and mainstreaming which p a r a l l e l e d each other i n the 1970s' and which are interdependent. Mainstreaming without d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n would be an empty concept and d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n without mainstreaming would be nothing more than dumping the mentally retarded into the community ( V i t e l l o , 1985). Wolfensberger (1972) reformulated the normalization p r i n c i p l e from the Scandinavian d e f i n i t i o n to state "...the u t i l i z a t i o n of means which are as c u l t u r a l l y normative as possible, in order to establish and/or maintain personal behaviour and c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s which are as c u l t u r a l l y normative as possible" (Wolfensberger, 1972, p. 28) The p r i n c i p l e requires that we have higher expectations of the c a p a b i l i t i e s of mentally retarded persons. As long as we perceive retarded persons as helpless, passive and dependent, they are l i k e l y to exhibit these behaviours. Conversely, as expectations become more po s i t i v e , gains in adaptive behaviour can be expected. 18 The normalization p r i n c i p l e i s integrative i n that retarded persons belong in the community as stated by G i l h o o l , (1976) in ( V i t e l l o , 1985, P. 31). Normalization serves as the philosophical underpinning for the d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n movement. It advocates that disabled c i t i z e n s are e n t i t l e d to those legal and human right s that are provided other c i t i z e n s . D e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n i s concerned with the re l o c a t i o n of retarded people from large i n s t i t u t i o n s to smaller community based r e s i d e n t i a l f a c i l i t i e s with the underlying assumption being that t h i s community care w i l l improve the quality of l i f e for mentally retarded persons. "Mainstreaming r e f l e c t s a policy that i s opposed to removing children from regular classrooms and segregating them i n special classes" Sarason & Doris, (1979) i n V i t e l l o (1985, p. 48). The roots came from the C i v i l Rights movement in the 1960s in America at which time e f f o r t s were made to provide an equal educational opportunity for children from ethnic and r a c i a l minorities. L e g i s l a t i o n had a s i g n i f i c a n t impact on p o l i c i e s to integrate these children into regular schools. At the l o c a l l e v e l the change in policy ideology, mentioned in the f i r s t paragraph (p.18), i s i l l u s t r a t e d in the Right of A l l Children l e g i s l a t i o n which supports appropriate education for even the most severely handicapped in more enabling environments leading to d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n . As a d i r e c t r e s u l t of t h i s l e g i s l a t i o n , students moved from i n s t i t u t i o n s such as Woodlands and Jericho to more d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i z e d settings such as Oakridge 19 School. Today, the 25 students at Gakridge school are multihandicapped as opposed to the early years when the bulk of students were disabled to a much lesser degree (see p. 17). Many of the subjects i n t h i s study have been d i r e c t l y effected by t h i s s h i f t i n ideology. Advocacy Advocacy i s defined as "the act of advocating or pleading a cause" and an advocate i s "one who pleads the cause of another or to speak or write i n favour of" (Funk & Wagnall). Advocacy evolved from support advocacy in the f i f t i e s , to organized association advocacy in the s i x t i e s , culminating with s e l f advocacy in the seventies. Advocacy did not ex i s t p r i o r to 1950, at which time parents gathered together at the l o c a l l e v e l for support of each other. Thus, "support advocacy" (Neufeld, 1984, p. I l l ) generated the power and momentum of monumental change in mental retardation p o l i c i e s over the next t h i r t y years. In 1958, parent groups organized the Canadian Association for the mentally retarded and eventually a network of p r o v i n c i a l associations and l o c a l associations which were "to become the p r i n c i p a l spawning ground for the advocacy programs of the 1970s" (Neufeld, 1984, p. 115). I t was through the advocacy r o l e of voluntary agencies in the 1960s, such as the National I n s t i t u t e on Mental Retardation, that provided t r a i n i n g in the "area of normalization and c i t i z e n advocacy" (Neufeld, 1984, p. 116). Though t h i s was supported, c o n f l i c t arose from the f a c t that parents were a f r a i d of losing control over the services that they had worked hard to b u i l d up. In the seventies a number of c o a l i t i o n s of disabled persons, such as 'Peoples F i r s t ' , evolved out of a need for the disabled persons to counteract the overprotective approaches of the then p r e v a i l i n g advocacy groups. This paramount change i n advocacy ideology resulted i n recognition of a b e l i e f that a l l c i t i z e n s have a r i g h t to l i v e , work and play in the community with dignity. Specia1 Olympics According to a coaches t r a i n i n g manual, i n Canada, physical educator Frank Hayden was responsible for the development of Special Olympics in the late 1960s. He received l i t t l e or no support from the Canadian association of Mental retardation or from the government. In B.C., Special Olympics was formed i n 1980. Its objectives are: (a) to promote sport and recreation for people who are mentally handicapped, <b> to help i n s t i l l and improve the self-esteem and physical awareness i n , and enhance the c a p a b i l i t i e s of the in d i v i d u a l who i s mentally handicapped, <c> to encourage and f a c i l i t a t e f i t n e s s , physical recreation and competitive sport a c t i v i t i e s b e n e f i c i a l to those indivi d u a l s who are mentally handicapped, (d) to promote through exi s t i n g sport governing bodies and other agencies, q u a l i f i e d i n s t r u c t i o n and t r a i n i n g , <e> to provide appropriate materials and documentary resources to aid the development of Special Olympic programs, <f) to make available to those athletes who have achieved the appropriate standards the opportunities to p a r t i c i p a t e in p r o v i n c i a l , national and international competitions. The Canadian Special Olympics developed a program model for implementation in p r o v i n c i a l chapters and t h i s model must r e f l e c t <a> ...the development , growth and maintenance of year round programs i n f i t n e s s , recreation and sport for the mentally handicapped, <b> that these programs are open and available to a l l mentally handicapped people, (c> that the approach to programming i s developmental i n nature and directed towards providing a f u l l continuum of services i n the area of f i t n e s s recreation and sport for a l l pa r t i c i p a n t s , <d) that the Special Olympics movement i n Canada i s community based and r e l i e s upon the volunteer sector of our communities to operate the Special Olympics program. It i s stated that the "most important aspect of t h i s model i s that i t i s developmental i n nature and directed towards providing the mentally handicapped population with a f u l l continuum of services i n the f i e l d of f i t n e s s , recreation and sport." There i s tension between some parent groups and agencies such as Special Olympics because, e s s e n t i a l l y , parent groups support the normalization p r i n c i p l e and Special Olympics v i o l a t e s that p r i n c i p l e on the basis that i t i s a segregated program. According to Lord (1979), Special Olympics brings f o r t h "... a l l the disadvantages of segregation ... which ... continue to af f e c t the i n d i v i d u a l . In many cases, people p a r t i c i p a t e year after year with l i t t l e or no improvement in s k i l l s or community involvement...and age inappropriate a c t i v i t i e s " <p. 115). John Lord (1979, p. 46) discusses the negatives of d i r e c t service provision and leader-directed programs which foster consumer dependence. He i s c r i t i c a l of large numbers of people with d i s a b l i l i t i e s congregating for l e i s u r e experiences. He says that large numbers i n themselves make i t v i r t u a l l y impossible to have any s i g n i f i c a n t amount of s k i l l upgrading. Small numbers and ind i v i d u a l programming allow f o r more f l e x i b l e planning while p o s s i b i l i t i e s for using community resources are increased. Small numbers increase the l i k e l i h o o d that others w i l l i n t e r a c t with pa r t i c i p a n t s who are disabled and in turn act as r o l e models. Many segregated l e i s u r e experiences are inappropriate f o r personal development. Parental permission must be obtained and the program leaders use language and rewards which are more t y p i c a l of 10 year olds. Many segregated experiences which are overprotective and have lowered expectations afford few opportunities for r i s k taking a necessary part of development, d a i l y l i v i n g and integration. Hutchinson and Bridge (1988) state that the " . . . r e a l i t y i s , however, that the integration movement has only had a s i g n i f i c a n t impact on the l i v e s of a small number of people who are integrated in most aspects of t h e i r l i v e s " ( p . 3 ) . They say that i t has l i t t l e impact on the majority of people who remain segregated in t h e i r l i v i n g , school and work environment and that t h i s i s due to p r e v a i l i n g attitudes of overprotection, l a b e l l i n g and segregation; decades of providing services in segregated ways; people re j e c t i n g integration for a l l but the few highest functioning and misinterpretation of the p r i n c i p l e of normalization to mean making people normal (Hutchinson, 1984, p. 45). Nichols (1988) concurs with t h i s view adding that one "cannot l e g i s l a t e change in perceptions and attitudes about persons with d i s a b i l i t i e s " (p. 9). Special Olympics i s an agency that employs reverse integration. Lord and Hutchison (1979) speak out against reverse integration as d i s t o r t i o n s of integration and l i s t disadvantages such as "hindering community integration; being used to j u s t i f y an agency's commitment to integration; a t t r a c t i n g other devalued groups" (p. 117). Another disadvantage i s that a 50/50 r a t i o or dominance of disabled persons i s unlike the r a t i o i n society and i s therefore u n r e a l i s t i c for both disabled and nondisabled in d i v i d u a l s ; such programs often a t t r a c t other devalued groups, thus further hindering community integration. Reverse integration i s often used to j u s t i f y an agencys commitment to integration, the agency and community thus avoiding t h e i r r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for providing support services for integration. Lord (1979) t a l k s about reverse integration advantages as: advocates for persons with d i s a b i l i t i e s can maintain control over program content and approach; and s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n occurs f i r s t i n a safe setting for the individual where supports are a v a i l a b l e . The challenge i s to discover i n each s i t u a t i o n the del i c a t e balance between providing advocacy and support and allowing the dignity of r i s k necessary for each person to develop. Overall, the trend i s away from formal services and towards community involvement where members are not "consumers of service, but rather are c i t i z e n s " (McKnight, 1985, p.15). £ 5 Ethnography, snd Mental Retardation In the past twenty years, research l i t e r a t u r e on mental retardation has emerged adopting an approach which recognises the mentally handicapped person's point of view. Such ethnographic work began i n 1967 with the research of R.B. Edgerton in the stigma experienced by mentally disabled persons recently released from i n s t i t u t i o n a l l i f e . His subjects represented the upper stratum of the hospitals' mildly retarded patients with regard to th e i r IQs, t h e i r demonstrated s o c i a l competence and emotional s t a b i l i t y . Interviews and participant observation were the techniques employed. The emphasis, i n i t i a l l y , was on f r i e n d l y and interested conversational approach and an encouragement to speak about anything they l i k e d . Following t h i s , an attempt was made to maintain an interview schedule which was loosely structured. Interviewers were instructed to lead the patient into description of c e r t a i n areas of int e r e s t , by nondirective questioning (Edgerton, 1967). Areas of int e r e s t focused on seven topics such as: "...where and how the ex-patient l i v e d , making a l i v i n g , r e l a t i o n s with others in the community, sex and marriage and children, t h e i r perception and presentation of themselves, and th e i r p r a c t i c a l problems in maintaining themselves i n the community" (Edgerton, 1967, p. 17). As much participant observation as possible included t r i p s to recreation areas, grocery shopping, sight seeing, s o c i a l v i s i t s i n t h e i r homes and restaurants. £ 6 Notes were never taken in the presence of the ex-patients and some sessions were tape recorded. Friends, r e l a t i v e s , neighbours, and employers were also interviewed. Vignettes and sketches were used as well. The vignettes described those about whom there was a mass of detailed knowledge s u f f i c i e n t "to permit an extensive and objective account of t h e i r l i v e s " (Edgerton, 1967, p. 19). They discovered that former patients employed strategies to evade the stigma they experienced. These strategies were passing, covering and locating "benefactors" or normal people to help them i n t h e i r everyday l i f e . In the The Cloak of Competence^ After Two Decades, Edgerton (1984) restudied the above group of people twenty years l a t e r using ethnographic techniques. These people were v i s i t e d at their homes, restaurants, on errands, shopping t r i p s and other everyday a c t i v i t i e s . The purpose was to examine the personal and s o c i a l resources for coping with chronic or acute stress as they aged. They discovered that the subjects were less dependent on "benefactors" and enjoyed l i f e with optimism and confidence. Edgerton has continued to pursue t h i s mode of research in mental retardation and in 1984 published an a r t i c l e c a l l e d The P^^ticipant-Observer Approach to Research in Mental Retardation o u t l i n i n g the advantages and disadvantages of t h i s form of research. He acknowledges such drawbacks to pa r t i c i p a n t observation as expense and time consumption. However, the advantages of learning how people "actually behave i n a variety of contexts and to grasp the meaning these a c t i v i t i e s have for them" (Edgerton, 1984, p. 500) outweigh the disadvantages. Edgerton maintains that i t i s v i t a l to observe retarded persons in everyday l i f e as i t naturally occurs as often and i n as many settings as possible rather than simply t a l k i n g about t h e i r l i v e s with them. The reason being i s that what they say they do and what they actually do often bears l i t t l e resemblance. And further, t h i s i s because "answering the questions of a parent, s o c i a l worker, or some other person of authority frequently has more to do with attempting to please or placate that person than i t does reality"(p.500). Besides, what i s said to a stranger i s d i f f e r e n t , often, than what i s said to someone f a m i l i a r . Direct questioning does not work because i t i n v i t e s deception and imposes the questioner's sense of what i s important rather than what the i n d i v i d u a l purports to be of importance. This form of research demands time and rapport. An example i s c i t e d of a man whose s e l f portrayal of a sexual sophisticate "masked complete ignorance of sexual behaviour." Settings are s i g n i f i c a n t as well. Any setting w i l l have i t s culture: i n s t i t u t i o n a l culture stresses productivity whereas the c l i e n t subculture emphasizes s o c i a b i l i t y , harmony and the maintenance of s e l f esteem. The " c l i e n t s culture t o l e r a t e s and encourages ...fantasy productions, some of which would be considered bizarre by others, including the workshop s t a f f . These "normalcy f a b r i c a t i o n s " ...serve to enhance s e l f esteem and r e l i e v e boredom." This was a dominant feature of Special Olympic athletes. Edgerton stresses, as a f i n a l point, the emphasis of t h i s methodology of "seeing things through th e i r eyes" in order £ 8 to e l i c i t the meaning l i f e holds for them (Edgerton, 1984). With the national policy of d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n , the release of many retarded people into the community created issues of concern revolving around community adaptation. Lives iD Process (Edgerton, 1984), a c o l l e c t i o n of a r t i c l e s written by the Socio-Behavioural Group at UCLA examines employment, friendship, speech etiquette, sheltered workshops, stigma and s e l f perspectives using multiple methods of interviews, observations, and quasi-experiments although the foundation of the approach i s ethnographic. Two a r t i c l e s from Lives i n Process that draw from ethnographic data are Kaufman's (1984) Friendship x Coping Systems and Community Adjustment of Mildly Retarded Adults and Self E§£§E®9£ly.©§ on Being Handicapped^ Stigma and Adjustment by Andrea Z e t l i n and Jim Turner (1984). The former i d e n t i f i e s four types of friendship patterns among young adults and shows the r e l a t i o n s h i p of each to s o c i a l adjustment. Her study covers IS months, a period that allowed her to "discuss the process of movement from one type of adjustment to another". Z e t l i n and Turner (1984) examined the experience of stigma and the strategies employed i n coping with t h i s awareness. Again, the study took place over an 18 month period, of prime importance, as rapport developed over time a l t e r s the portrayal offered to the researchers. A person i n i t i a l l y cast as a "denier" l a t e r revealed himself to be a " q u a l i f i e r " . In a l l of these studies, time i s invaluable i n examining people who "invoke s e l f protective adaptive actions to conceal 'spoiled' i d e n t i t y " ( Z e t l i n and Turner, 1984, p. 118). Only when the researcher i s perceived as nonthreatening i s an open view permitted. In Lives iQ E£2S®§5§ the focus i s on studying the l i v e s of retarded people in t h e i r entirety and the conclusion i s that these people have complex and changing l i v e s . In 1986, Edgerton published an a r t i c l e on Alcohol and Drug Use by Mentally Retarded Adults. A concern with adverse e f f e c t of alcohol and drug use on community adaptation was the impetus for the study. Data was c o l l e c t e d from four samples of retarded adults u t i l i z i n g extensive ethnographic research over the course of several years. The samples were: candidates f o r normalization; independently l i v i n g adults; inner c i t y blacks and d e i n a t i t u t i o n a l i s e d adults. The subjects were seen i n various settings such as work, transportation, l e i s u r e , shopping t r i p s , v i s i t s to friends etc. Conversations covered topics on aspects of work, s e l f maintenance in everyday a c t i v i t i e s , family r e l a t i o n s h i p s , l e i s u r e , behaviour i n public places, communicative competence, involvement with service delivery system and fantasy as well as alcohol and drug usage. Researchers also interviewed f r i e n d s , r e l a t i v e s , and employers about alcohol and drug use of the subjects. Edgerton learned that most of these people were aware that being l a b e l l e d "mentally retarded" was personally d i s c r e d i t i n g . The conditions of t h e i r l i v e s were painful in that they experienced s o c i a l and parental r e j e c t i o n , l i v e d in substandard 3© housing, had limited access to transportation and incomes and suffered anxiety, depression and low s e l f esteem. However, drugs and alcohol were rarely abused because some of the subjects reported they had watched i t destroy people who were close to them and they wanted to avoid t h i s . Dudleys' ethnography Living with Stigma <1983) explores the essence of stigma i n a l l facets of the mentally handicapped person's l i f e using a constant comparative method of q u a l i t a t i v e analysis. Twenty seven subjects for the study were drawn from four agencies for the mentally handicapped of mild and moderate retardation who l i v e d either with t h e i r parents or in a group home. Additional c r i t e r i a was a willingness to become involved in the study and the a b i l i t y to communicate subjective material as well as f a c t u a l information. Data was c o l l e c t e d on ten forms that served to organize the data for the purpose of analysis and preservation in natural form. A journal of observations and a journal of impressions recorded i n i t i a l contacts and distinguished between what actually happened and what was observed. Another form recorded more focused observations " . . . i n order to d i r e c t researchers' attention to stigma-promoting processes" (Dudley, 1984, p. 109). Each pa r t i c i p a n t was a l l o t t e d an i n d i v i d u a l packet of forms that organized data within s i x t o p i c a l areas to record observations and conversations. The r o l e and purpose of the researchers was explained to the participant at the beginning of the study. The researchers "...gradually moved into t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s as par t i c i p a n t s to the 31 extent- that t h i s helped them become inconspicuous and accepted as i n s i d e r s " (Dudley, 1984, p.110). The participants were t o l d that the informal interviews were conversations and they could t a l k f r e e l y about anything they wanted to, although the researchers attempted to d i r e c t the par t i c i p a n t s into t a l k i n g about the information areas of the study. The study was divided into three phases. The i n i t i a l o r i e n t a t i o n phase consisted of nonintrusive observations of daily routine a c t i v i t i e s , made in the f i r s t two to four contacts. Phase two was the focused observation period in which researchers v i s i t e d at varied times and si t u a t i o n s in order to observe a sampling of four kinds of a c t i v i t i e s such as s t a f f / p a r t i c i p a n t i . e . meals, p a r t i c i p a n t / p a r t i c i p a n t , i . e . informal conversations, participant/community i . e . shopping and s t a f f / s t a f f i . e . s t a f f meetings. The t h i r d phase was informal conversation which focused on stigma. Dudley concluded o v e r a l l that the research p a r t i c i p a n t s are "captives" of a "mentally retarded world" that i s segregated from the mainstream; that they are very conscious of t h e i r stigmatic status; that there are a number and variety of ways that stigma i s promoted and that the participants respond to t h i s by being defenseless or a c t i v e l y r e s i s t i n g stigma. Passing as a strategy was also examined. Edgerton's and Dudley's studies focused on those who were well able to communicate the i r s i t u a t i o n s - t h e i r subjects were selected. In t h i s t h e s i s , the team was viewed as a whole. There was a greater range of verbal representation that may not make sense on our terms but extends the boundaries of expression from those who are fluent to those with minimal a r t i c u l a t i o n . Dudley (1985) conducted an ethnographic study The Missing l i n k in Evaluating Sheltered Workshop Programs^ The Clients^. IOP.yt' Sixteen c l i e n t s i n a sheltered workshop were consulted about t h e i r work r o l e s and program. Participant observation and in-depth interviewing methods were employed. The 16 c l i e n t s were chosen based on t h e i r : representativeness of the t o t a l workshop c l i e n t population i n gender, race and socioeconomic status, I.Q score and period of time as c l i e n t s of the program; t h e i r a b i l i t y to communicate t h e i r views and perceptions and th e i r willingness to p a r t i c i p a t e i n the study. Most of the c l i e n t s were i n d i f f e r e n t to pursuing outside employment and spent most of th e i r time t a l k i n g about nonwork concerns i . e . r e l a t i o n s h i p s and most of the c l i e n t s denied having a d i s a b i l i t y . I t became apparent that the c l i e n t s needed help " . . . i n understanding the goals and functions of a workshop..." and also of importance i s the need to understand "...why they need to disavow p a r t i c u l a r labels as well as to discover t h e i r preferred ways of describing t h e i r d i s a b i l i t i e s " <p. 239). The e l i c i t a t i o n of the c l i e n t s perceptions, i n t e r e s t s and preoccupations may i n d i r e c t l y relate to work r o l e s . Dudley concluded that the views and perceptions of c l i e n t s who are labeled mentally retarded can be "both relevant, and useful i n evaluating a sheltered workshop programs' effectiveness" <p. 239). In Meaning i n L i f e as Experienced by_ Persons Labeled Retarded i n a Group How©* Heshusius (1981) ethnographically studied eight mentally retarded people who l i v e d i n a group home and worked in a sheltered workshop. The time period was eight months and the purpose was to investigate some of the ways that these people experienced meaning in day-to-day l i v i n g (Heshusius, 1981). In other words, 'how do they make sense of t h e i r l i v e s ? ' One of the outstanding differences between t h i s study and many of the other ethnographic i n q u i r i e s was attention to "presentation of s e l f " . The researcher's consciousness of s e l f was documented and monitored i n f i e l d notes and i n presentation of his r o l e to s t a f f and subjects. Heshusius gives a f i n e l y detailed account of methodology - grounded theory (Glaser and Strauss, 1967) - generation of categories and t h e i r properties, t h e o r e t i c a l sampling, saturation and explanation of patterns; v a l i d i t y and r e l i a b i l i t y procedures. Themes that emerged can be categorized as follows (Heshusius documents the subjects own words under these thematic t i t l e s . She does not impose her own a n a l y s i s ) ; independence: "we badly want to be more independent than we can be here"(p.136); marriage: " i f our present boy/girl f r i e n d leaves, we w i l l take another one, for i t i s important to keep believing that we, too, can marry and l i v e on our own one day, and do the things we want to do just as everyone else"(p.138); physical/sexual involvement, having children and boy/girl r e l a t i o n s h i p s : "we do often understand quite a b i t about other 34 persona' behaviour and t h e i r situations"<p.138); interpersonal understanding and intrapersonal understanding: "we know that we are in a place for the "retarded" and we know there are things we cannot do (such as reading, writing, cooking good things and math) but that does not make us retarded"<p.138). Ethnographic studies related to sport have also been conducted. Levine and Langness (1983) and Vaz (1982) examine various aspects of coach/athlete r e l a t i o n s h i p s . Levine and Langness (1983) conducted an ethnographic study Context.x A b i l i t y and Performance! Comparison of Competitive A t h l e t i c s Among Mildly Retarded and Nonretarded Adults which studied mildly mentally retarded and nonretarded adults performance in competitive a t h l e t i c s , s p e c i f i c a l l y basketball. The team of mentally retarded players was one "...of a large number of private nonprofit organizations in the Los Angeles area organized by parents of retarded adults" (p.529). The other team consisted of seven members of the Southern C a l i f o r n i a S p i r i t basketball team. Researchers observed a l l aspects of the game but focused on topics such as "how, and by whom, game strategy was planned and ca r r i e d out; knowledge and use of rules by team members; arguments with o f f i c i a l s and verbal defense of a positi o n ; emotional expression of team members before, during, and after play; on court "competency"; and the s o c i a l and physical conditions under which play occurred" (p. 529). 35 They discoved that retarded adulta "were confronted with s i m p l i f i e d rules, emotional (rather than primarily strategic) coaching, lax o f f i c i a t i n g , and an altered s o c i a l context within which competition occurred. They played with more anxiety and a lower l e v e l of s t r a t e g i c play than nonretarded players" (p. 537). The attitudes towards winning d i f f e r e d f o r nonretarded and retarded players. Winning was an e x p l i c i t part of the game for the nonretarded. "For the retarded players s e l f esteem, the s p i r i t of competition and p a r t i c i p a t i o n , and a normalizing experience were the often-stated purposes"(p. 537). The emphasis of the coaches was on " f e e l i n g better" or being "a r e a l human being". "Really" winning, however, was of the utmost importance to retarded players. Levine and Langneas (1983) concluded that "...normalised environments within which retarded adults play can actually deny them an opportunity for 'normal' play, placing t h e i r self-esteem and competence 'center stage,'...and contributing to an increase in i n d i v i d u a l anxiety, thus providing another se t t i n g that demands and reinforces 'retarded' behaviour" (p. 538). B a s i c a l l y , competition should not be altered under most circumstances for retarded players. Special Olympic athletes were encouraged by coaches to "have some fun out there" and to "remember, good sportsmanship" yet t h i s seemed incongruent with the hype that preceded the year end p r o v i n c i a l tournament and the medals and formality of the event. The team a l l wanted the gold. 3S Another ethnographic study was conducted in a sport setting and showed a di s p a r i t y between what coaches' views, opinions and goals were and what young hockey players' perspectives on 'what the game was about'. Vaz (1982) in The Professignalisation of Young Hockey Players! studied one minor league of hockey players aged seven to eighteen (average age was twelve) over the winter season of 1969/1970. He recorded observational, conversational and interview data as well as d i s t r i b u t i n g 1915 anonymous questionaires to boys registered in minor hockey league. Vaz (1982) " . . . t r i e d to penetrate the o f f i c i a l pronouncements on what the game was about." He attempted to look beneath the surface of the "...customar(y) emphas(sis) (on) the importance of fun and recreation, the teaching of sportsmanship, and concern for the growth and moral development of youngsters" (p. 2). He stressed that "since participants in a s o c i a l s i t u a t i o n always act according to the meaning the s i t u a t i o n has fo r them, any accurate picture and understanding of s o c i a l behaviour requires an examination of the pa r t i c i p a n t s ' perspectives and t h e i r interpretations of the action" (Vaz, 1982, p. 2). Vaz (1982) showed that although young players were expected to respect the rules of the game, they are given no formal i n s t r u c t i o n i n obeying rule s although they do receive informal i n s t r u c t i o n in v i o l a t i n g r u l e s . Vaz (1982) presents the athletes' perspectives about hockey regarding winning, sportsmanship, s o c i a l i s a t i o n , r u l e s , and the subculture of violence to l i s t a few. 37 SUMMARY The l i t e r a t u r e reviewed presents the people l a b e l l e d mentally retarded i n the l i g h t of past h i s t o r i c a l conditions and recent monumental changes due to a convergence of s o c i a l and p o l i t i c a l conditions which have resulted i n educational, l e g a l , vocational, s o c i a l and recreational advancements. Lite r a t u r e covering the s o c i o - p o l i t i c a l scene i s presented in counterpoint covering the in t e r n a t i o n a l , national and l o c a l scenes. N i r j e i n Sweden, Bank-Mikkelson in Denmark and Wolfensberger i n North America pioneered the p r i n c i p l e of normalization and set out guidelines for i t s ' application and implementation through the movements of D e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n and Mainstreaming. Simmons (1985) described national p o l i t i c a l resistance to the normalization p r i n c i p a l while l o c a l publication by an Association f o r the Mentally Retarded documented the grass roots lobbying for improved services and catalogued those programs effected. The r o l e of advocacy has changed over the four decades i t has taken to implement the normalization p r i n c i p l e . The s h i f t from support advocacy to organised advocacy, to s e l f advocacy r e f l e c t s the id e o l o g i c a l s h i f t from paternalism towards s e l f determinism. Such philosophical tensions are played out in arenas such as sport where advocates of community integration debate with segregated, d i r e c t service oriented agencies over the issues of paternalism (segregation) and s e l f determinism (integration). Neither viewpoint i s that of the mentally retarded. Ethnographic l i t e r a t u r e reveals the value of the 'emic' or insider perspective. In studying the l i v e s of the people la b e l l e d mentally retarded t h i s methodology enables t h e i r point of view to be presented. The ethnographic studies reviewed mainly u t i l i z e d the techniques of informal interview and participant observation over a lengthy period of time i n many d i f f e r e n t settings. While t h i s method i s very time consuming and expensive, the knowledge gained from observing true behaviour and subsequent understanding of the meaning of observed behaviour i s invaluable. 39 CHAPTER II Conducting the Study T y p i c a l l y , service agencies for the mentally retarded are operated by nonretarded people (An exception i s self-advocate groups l i k e Peoples' Choice), who serve as 'gatekeepers': "...actors with control over key resources and avenues of opportunity" (Hammersley & Atkinson, 1983, p.38). Approval to conduct the study had to be obtained from the gatekeepers - Special Olympic head o f f i c e . The r o l e of ethnographer i s not f i x e d , rather i t i s dynamic and complex. This complexity r e s u l t s from the ensuing dilemma of c o n f l i c t i n g obligations between the ethnographer and athlete/coach, as described on page 42 and 43. U t i l i z i n g an ethnographic research design proved to be e f f e c t i v e but evoked tension in the ethnographer with p o s i t i v i s t t r a i n i n g . Mention i s made of the e f f e c t s on the researcher from t h i s tension between positivism vs. naturalism. Settings in which the study takes place are described followed by methodological r e f l e c t i o n s . 40 The Gatekeeper A proposal was made to B.C. Special Olympics o u t l i n i n g the study. Upon approval, the coach of the Vancouver Floor hockey team was contacted to request permission to p a r t i c i p a t e on his team in the dual roles of volunteer coach and researcher. He was very receptive. Application was made to the UBC ethics committee to acquire approval of the study and once t h i s Was attained, the Vancouver Floor Hockey athletes were contacted by l e t t e r which outlined the study and requested p a r t i c i p a t i o n . One parent c a l l e d me and asked what observing and informal interviewing meant "how many people w i l l be tr a i p s i n g in?" A telephone c a l l followed the l e t t e r to determine i n t e r e s t . Informed Consent Informed consent was a de l i c a t e issue within the study. When a person i s nonverbal and mentally handicapped, how can the researcher be sure that the consent given i s informed? A l l of the athletes were of legal age and therefore consenting adults. Some l i v e d on t h e i r own, some in group homes and others with parents. There were many questions to be considered. How much of the explanation that I gave of the study did the athletes understand? Did they r e a l l y know what they were consenting to? Were they t r y i n g to please? Who should give permission to par t i c i p a t e - the athletes themselves, t h e i r parents (even though the athlete was an adult), t h e i r group home caretaker, t h e i r foster parent, s o c i a l worker etc.? What right s do the mentally retarded have? Are they vulnerable and how much should they be 41 protected and who should provide t h i s protection? According to Neufeld (1984) "The message they are sending i s that they wish to speak for themselves and make t h e i r own decisions" ( p l l 7 ) . But s e l f advocacy i s a new concept for the mentally disabled and paternalism and overprotective attitudes are deeply rooted. Role of the Ethnographer The r o l e of the ethnographer i s described by Agar (1980, p. 41) as an arrogant enterprise: In a short period of time, an ethnographer moves in among a group of strangers to study and describe t h e i r b e l i e f s , document t h e i r s o c i a l l i f e , write about t h e i r subsistence strategies and generally explore the t e r r i t o r y r i g h t down to t h e i r recipes for the evening meal...At best, an ethnographer can only be p a r t i a l . Agar (1980) says that the group members w i l l assign a " s o c i a l category" to the ethnographer and that what they think he wants to learn and t h e i r decisions on what he i s t o l d " . . . w i l l derive partly from t h e i r sense of who he or she i s " (p. 41). I f e l t pressured and consumed by a need to manage these impressions. I had introduced my study to the coaches as focusing on "athlete/coach i n t e r a c t i o n " and I was concerned about appearing to take a c r i t i c a l view of the coaches or that they might see me as a "spy" working for Special Olympics. At the same time, I did not want t h i s fear to influence my observations. I wanted to be objective and aee whatever waa there, not ignore something that might be unpopular to document. At the same time, I did not want the athletes to screen information from me because of a lack of t r u s t . Olesen and Whittaker (1968) i n The S i l e n t Dialogue describe a si m i l a r dilemma where "...the researcher i s caught between c o n f l i c t i n g obligations-one, being f r i e n d l y toward the students and the other, showing respect for the l e c t u r e r . On the other hand, the researcher i s involved with managing the lecturer's comfort while, at the same time, managing the stance of impassive onlooker ..."(p.27). When I began my fieldwork with a Special Olympic f l o o r hockey team I introduced myself as a researcher and coach, but I was never questioned about my r o l e as researcher despite the presence of my f i e l d n o t e pad and occasionally my tape recorder. I was consistently expected to play the role of the coach and f r i e n d in that I was sought out to solve a t h l e t i c and personal problems. Also, when I stood in the middle of the gymnasium and i n i t i a t e d warmup, they complied without question! At the end of the season, along with the " o f f i c i a l " coaches, I received a plaque with my name engraved upon i t , confirmation of my coaching status. In the gymnasium, I observed, participated with and questioned athletes with regard to t h e i r l i v e s as Special Olympians. After practises, occasionally I had coffee with them or drove them home allowing more personal and detailed information on t h e i r l i v e s . And as I became aware of the vulnerable complexity in which some l i v e d , my r o l e threatened to become that of advocate. At times, I found myself unable to see the f a m i l i a r ; I caught myself (or others caught me) making assumptions baaed on my own experiences and background; and I attempted to "make sense" of the i r culture because of discomfort with that which did not hold meaning for me personally. In e f f e c t i t was a kind of culture shock. I constantly agonized over "adequate e l i c i t a t i o n " of data. Was I asking enough questions, the r i g h t kind and of the ri g h t people? I struggled with the quantitative notions of representation and g e n e r a l i s a b i l i t y and r e l i a b i l i t y (many responses were untrue - and I came to r e a l i z e that t h i s in i t s e l f was of consequence). I f e l t "the p o s i t i v i s t over my shoulder" (Whittaker, 1986, p.54). 44 RESEARCH DESIGN The greatest, struggle for me as a researcher was i n operating under two opposing paradigms: positivism vs. naturalism, for I could not completely dis p e l past biases. Kuhn (1970) describes the need to recognise the influence of the researchers background and t r a i n i n g . F i r s t , at least in order of presentation, i s the in s u f f i c i e n c y of methodological d i r e c t i v e s , by themselves, to dictate a unique substantive conclusion to many sorts of s c i e n t i f i c questions. Instructed to examine e l e c t r i c a l or chemical phenomena, the man who i s ignorant of these f i e l d s but who know what i t i s to be s c i e n t i f i c may legitimately reach any one of a number of incompatible conclusions. Among those legitimate p o s s i b i l i t i e s , the p a r t i c u l a r conclusions he does a r r i v e at are probably determined by his p r i o r experience in other f i e l d s , by the accidents of his investigation, and by his own ind i v i d u a l makeup (Kuhn, 1970, p.3). My background and t r a i n i n g as a physical educator created problems in moving from a hypothesis testing orientation to a hypothesis generating orientation in ethnography. To l e t go of the objective, accurate, systematic, predictable, structured approach of the p o s i t i v i s t s c i e n t i s t and adopt the f l e x i b l e , r e f l e x i v e , i n t e r a c t i v e , unstructured, subjective approach of the 45 ethnographer created a c o n f l i c t within me. Aa Peter Berger suggests in the S o c i o l o g i c a l Inguirer, "Like love, a concentration on technique i s l i k e l y to lead to impotence". The choice of u t i l i z i n g an ethnographic research design was appropriate, but my insecurity with minimal design structure and an assumption that I could r e p l i c a t e the work of Spradley in uncovering aubcultural meanings through the richness of language using ethnoscience methods proved to be too rigorous with t h i s p a r t i c u l a r culture for reasons which w i l l be elaborated upon l a t e r . Ethnoscience i s a general ethnographic method which maintains the assumptions that culture i s shaped i n the mind, that culture i s knowledge. It uses the techniques of participant observation and informal interview to e l i c i t c u l t u r a l knowledge. Such knowledge i s l i s t e d , sorted and f o l k terms are interpreted. The research design i s ethnographic and therefore n a t u r a l i s t i c . The athletes were studied in natural sport settings (games, practises and competitions) h o l i s t i c a l l y (in r e l a t i o n to other aspects of the s i t u a t i o n i . e . o f f i c i a l s , other athletes, parents). The basis for t h i s design was the work of Edgerton (1967, 1984) and Dudley (1978) as well as Bogdan and Taylor (1975) and Levine and Langness (1983), a l l of whom have used ethnographic techniques of p a r t i c i p a n t observation and informal interview to gain c u l t u r a l knowledge of the mentally handicapped. The t h e o r e t i c a l groundwork i s symbolic interactionism (Blumer, 1969), which includes such concepts and premises as: meaning or s i g n i f i c a n c e , the intersubjective nature of r e a l i t y , the s e l f as subject and object and as a product of s o c i a l process, and the interpretation of events, persons, and s e l f through interaction with others as a force f o r maintaining and a l t e r i n g r e a l i t y ( E s t r o f f , 1981). These terms w i l l be detailed in chapter four. THREE PHASES The study i s composed of three phases: orientation to e s t a b l i s h rapport and to allow time to "blend into" the sport set t i n g (approx. 3 weeks duration); observation/conversation which took place during the biweekly practises and games and was approximately one month in length; and a more focused phase consisting of informal directed interviews with those athletes who were verbal (see question outline) and informal conversations with d i f f e r e n t groups of athletes at McDonalds restaurant close to the community centre, (one month in length - see ethnoscience model Appendix E) The three phases covered a period of three months from January 5, 1988 to A p r i l 15th, 1988 and took place at the Mount Pleasant community centre, Simon Fraser School gymnasium and McDonalds Restaurant on Cambie and B r i t t a n i a Community Centre (season end p r o v i n c i a l tournament). 47 Phase One Orientation On the f i r s t night of the f l o o r hockey season, the researcher was introduced as a graduate student and volunteer coach by one of the head coaches. The researcher then explained the purpose of the study including kinds of information that would be sought; the general intent of the study; the importance of c o n f i d e n t i a l i t y and the frequency of contact and length of the study. The consent forms were gone over with the group. Parental consent and ind i v i d u a l consent were described and emphasized. It was stressed that the athletes could choose to opt out of the study at any time. Some examples of responses follow. One athlete t o l d me he knew what a study was and had been in studies before and ci t e d the UBC f i t n e s s t e s t i n g a few years p r i o r . Another athlete said he knew what a study was. Yet another said he knew what studies were and had been in studies before "I got thoughts on why (he named a Canuck player) got a suspension". Another said "I was in pr o v i n c i a l games". An athlete asked "Is i t a t e s t ? " Another question posed by an athlete was "What's a study?" One fellow responded (with alcohol on his breath) "I had to f i r e three people t h i s week because they were drinking and sloughing off behind my back." He t o l d me he worked at Beaver Lumber and might not be able to bring the consent form back because he had to work. Someone else t o l d me that her group home worker would get the form; several other athletes did not speak and so I had no 48 idea what they understood. I did not f e e l comfortable about that. A very young looking athlete giggled and nodded and pressed up against me appearing to have no understanding of what I was tr y i n g to convey, or any intere s t for that matter. The coaches were t o l d that the focus of the study was on athlete perceptions of goals, p r i o r i t i e s and expectations in f l o o r hockey. I proposed to blend into the sport setting by playing the r o l e of a coach rather than that of a researcher. I planned to interact with the team in a sim i l a r fashion as the other coaches. Phase Two Q*2§§.£yatign L Q2n.y.e.E§§i=i2D This phase consisted of observation/conversation. My ro l e as coach was to a s s i s t in the practises, but I had a note pad to record my observations and conversations in my briefcase, close at hand. The question framework that I had designed in my proposal was occasionally used to e l i c i t information, i . e . I would ask questions when the athletes were s i t t i n g on the bench such as "what position do you play?" Phase Three Focused Observation / Informal Interview This stage of the study was focused observation and informal interview. The question framework (see Appendix C) was u t i l i z e d during the interviews only as a guide. Athletes ignored some 49 questions or led the interview in d i f f e r e n t d i r e c t i o n s . But r e f l e x i v i t y i s one of the advantages of ethnographic interviewing. These interviews took place on a hallway bench away from the gymnasium and other people. I approached athletes by asking i f i t was convenient for me to talk to them about t h e i r ideas and fee l i n g s regarding f l o o r hockey. Often they would reply by saying that they would in a few minutes or after the second period, for example. 50 Settings The Community Centre The Vancouver Floor Hockey team practises at Mount Pleasant Community Centre. It has been the home of the team for eight years. I t i s e a s i l y accessible by bus and car. Most of the athletes l i v e in Vancouver, but some t r a v e l from Burnaby and Richmond to play. The athletes t r a v e l by bus, car pool, walking, one drives himself and parents drive as well. The athletes t r a v e l alone or with f r i e n d s . The Teams The team i s composed of approximately t h i r t y players, twenty four consistently turn out to practises. They range i n age from 19 years old to 46. Of the t h i r t y players, four are female. I n i t i a l l y , the team practised as one unit but by the beginning of February, an informal assessment by the coaches determined that the team should be divided i n two, based on s k i l l l e v e l . The "B" team or " D r i l l e r s " would carry the highest s k i l l l e v e l athletes and practise on Tuesday nights at Mount Pleasant community centre. This team formally comprised three women and eight men. The "C" team or "Blasters" would practise on Monday nights at the school adjacent to the community centre (Simon Fraser School) and i t consisted of one woman and twelve men (see practise and game schedule. Appendix B). About six players attended practises sporadically and did not p a r t i c i p a t e i n the p r o v i n c i a l tournament at the end of the season. 51 The Coaches The coaches numbered from four to six and varied from week to week. One coach managed the D r i l l e r s and the other head coach the Blasters. The team manager was one of the parents and looked a f t e r d e t a i l s such as equipment, schedules etc. and served as l i a i s o n , often, between athletes and coaches. She was known as mom . Practise Structure The practise times were scheduled for f i v e to seven o'clock on Tuesdays and seven to eight o'clock on Mondays. The athletes were generally on time and knew the routine. They did not wait for instructions but went to the equipment room and chose basketballs, v o l l e y b a l l s or soccer b a l l s to busy themselves u n t i l Barb, the equipment manager arrived and, at that point, whoever was availa b l e helped her bring the bags of equipment i n . Generally, the coaches arrived one by one and were approached for advice, to chat with, or ask questions with regard to future games. Usually, the gymnasium was free by practise time, although a f i t n e s s class was always waiting outside the doors to come i n afte r p r a c t i s e . I observed the structure of the practise to be free time which was s e l f organized into: shooting baskets; teasing - chasing people around; bouncing a b a l l around and around the gymnasium; and mini soccer game. As the coaches and volunteers arrived, they would j o i n into whatever the athletes were doing. The volunteers always allowed the athletes to make these choices. There was a natural and appropriate breakdown of free choice matching a b i l i t i e s and p e r s o n a l i t i e s i . e . the best players joined in soccer; the f l i r t a t i o u s and very s o c i a l chased other people around; the s o l i t a r y players l i k e Sam and Greg bounced the b a l l around and around the gymnasium by themselves, apparently desiring no interaction or at least not seeking i t (Sam i s a u t i s t i c so t h i s generally i s the nature of his interaction even on the f l o o r during practises and games). Shooting baskets was generally done with another person (either volunteer or another athlete) e n t a i l i n g a d i f f e r e n t kind of exchange with the focus on improving in d i v i d u a l s k i l l s or showing o f f techniques i . e . more tal k i n g and scoring and concentration on technique. With the f a s t moving soccer game, the focus was on scoring. Bouncing the b a l l around the gymnasium allowed one to keep attention focused away from oneself because they were engaged in meaningful a c t i v i t y but didn't have to i n t e r a c t . Teasing a c t i v i t i e s were s o c i a l l y meaningful and generally involved one sex going after the other. I wondered about t h i s i n the sense that indiv i d u a l s came to f l o o r hockey motivated by d i f f e r e n t reasons or desires: those who wanted to be with people for s o c i a l reasons; those who wanted to compete and loved the sport; those who simply wanted a place to go "To stay off the s t r e e t " (see Appendix D - p. 173). For instance, why would Sam come to f l o o r hockey - he i s a u t i s t i c 53 and seems to not be involved with anybody. He gets there on his own and i s on time. Why would Larry come only to complain "I don't want to". The practise then took the form of a warm up which was led by d i f f e r e n t volunteers each week and included stretching and running. Some of the athletes could not do the exercises, became dizzy "I can't do that" (standing on one foot) or did them extremely well "I'm double jointed". Many athletes did not appear to understand how to do some of the movements and had to be guided through the movements and constantly t o l d to pay attention and not f o o l around. Then generally, there would be a huddle and the head coach would explain what was going to transpire that evening. She was always extremely well organized and had a typed practise plan. She spoke normally and was always calm and gentle and well respected by the athletes - e a s i l y approachable. The practise would consist of d r i l l s and a scrimmage interspersed with time to get a drink of water. At the end of the practise the athletes would be led i n a "cool down" followed by a "huddle" i n which the athletes would form a c i r c l e i n the middle of the gymnasium surrounding the coach to l i s t e n to any parting advice before they l e f t f o r home. 54 Games Games were played with normal teams such as the Jewish Community Centre, Super Valu, Mount Pleasant Community Centre Staff and other Special Olympic teams. In two cases athletes arranged games with t h e i r work mates (Super Valu). Scores were not recorded because a l l of the games were for fun. However, a l l of the scores were close, (see Appendix B for practise and game schedule) According to the coach, the games "...are b a s i c a l l y a t r a i n i n g ground for the tournament at the end of the season." MCDonalds Restaurant Mount Pleasant Community Centre i s within a few blocks of McDonalds. After the practises or games, t h i s i s where I would go with some of the athletes for a drink. Tournament B r i t t a n i a community centre (within a few miles of Mount Pleasant) was the s i t e of the Special Olympic p r o v i n c i a l f l o o r hockey tournament A p r i l 8, to A p r i l 10. The athletes spent two nights at the centre along with a l l the other athletes from the d i f f e r e n t regions i n B.C. Besides playing games, optional a c t i v i t i e s included a recreational swim, skating, weight l i f t i n g , videos and pancake breakfast. At the conclusion of the tournament, a banquet, awards and entertainment the 'Suspenders' ensued. 5 5 Pizza Hut A team windup dinner was held at the Pizza Hut restaurant at the end of the season. Athletes discussed the tournament, past competitions (drawing strategies on napkins) and gossip. Plaques with team pictures were given, i n appreciation, to the coaches and manager. Methodological Reflections In t h i s study, I t r i e d to view the team as a whole, allowing fo r a greater range of verbal representation that extends the boundaries of expression from those who are fluent to those with minimal or no a r t i c u l a t i o n . I n i t i a l l y , an ethnoscience model was proposed (see Appendix E) supported by the work of Spradley (1980). I based my choice of t h i s model on the assumption that there would be, as in Spradleys' You owe yourself a Drunk (1970) or Whytes' Street Corner Society (1955), a language unique to the mentally retarded complete with cover terms and componential analysis. But t h i s did not prove viable due to the language l i m i t a t i o n s of the athletes and the model i t s e l f was l i m i t i n g in that I focused more on language than observation. I discovered that what was moat important to the athletes was to sound l i k e the coaches, not maintain an exclusive semantic world. Biklen and Moseley (1988) wrote an a r t i c l e t i t l e d Are you Retarded?^ "No Î m C a t h o l i c ^ ! Q u a l i t a t i v e Methods i n the Study of 56 people with Severe Handicaga which was published a f t e r my research. Had t h i s a r t i c l e preceded my study, i t would have influenced the way i n which I asked questions, amongst other things. They state that the ...researcher's major concern i s language. The dependence of the q u a l i t a t i v e researcher on language, and the image of the ideal informant as an a r t i c u l a t e person ( i . e . Doc in Whyte, 1955) may c a l l f o r some creative t a c t i c s i n the face of the informant who cannot verbally inform (p.161). The study outlines modifications for informants whose use of language i s limited such as: breaking down questions; rethinking the use of small t a l k i n developing rapport as i t i s baaed "...on an assumption of mutual understanding and f a m i l i a r i t y with t y p i c a l patterns of communication" (Biklen and Moseley, 1988, p. 157); consulting the informant as to where the interviews should be conducted and observing over a period of time i n varied settings. What I discovered, over time, i s that when a group of people are stigmatized, language mechanisms are adaptive. Sabsay and Kernan (1981) report a r e l i a n c e on others rather than themselves. "That i s , rather than being concerned with adequate communicative 57 design, mildly retarded speakers apparently re l y on t h e i r i n t e r l o c u t e r a to seek the information they need to understand or disambiguate the speakers messages and to provide the o v e r a l l structure f o r such things as narratives" (Sabsay & Kernan, 1979, p. 293). They point out that "...the mildly retarded almost never ask questions, i n i t i a t e r e p a i r , or use other l i n g u i s t i c means of resolving t h e i r own confusion with others' utterances..." (p.292). I observed that there were times when athletes would s i t on the bench for a considerable period during the game, but would never challenge the coach, complain or ask questions about what they were doing. For instance, "what position do you play?" "Beats me" or "whatever the coach t e l l s me". Another example i s when I asked an athlete "What i s sportsmanship?" He re p l i e d "Captain". I restated "I mean, what i s a good sport?" He said "I should know i t . I t s a good workout. Terry's a good goalie. Think about your p o s i t i o n . We had a good game. We played a r e a l l y hard game" (see Appendix D - p. 170). This leads to another point: subjects may be i n c l i n e d to please the interviewer because they have very close relationships with group home or other human service system s t a f f and are used to doing or saying what i s acceptable to them (Biklen & Moseley, 1988). Athletes would say "the bosses have r i g h t s to t e l l us" re f e r r i n g to the coaches. 58 Another problem i s that "...moat q u a l i t a t i v e researchers are trained to ask open-ended questions in order to allow respondents to frame answers from t h e i r own perspective" (Biklen & Moseley, 1988, p. 158) but these do not work with the mentally retarded. For example, "what do you think about your team?" " I t ' s good" i s not as r i c h an answer as i f the question were broken down into parts as Biklen suggests. But otherwise, an open ended question presents too much r i s k for where "interviewers d i f f i c u l t i e s tend to center on t h e i r i n a b i l i t y to understand the actual language of the informant, ...the interviewee may have a d i f f i c u l t time with the concepts of the interviewer" (Biklen, 1988, p. 157). 59 CHAPTER III S o c i a l i s a t i o n and the Dominant Culture Inappropriate and appropriate behaviour i s set by the dominant culture based on economic, s o c i a l or p o l i t i c a l determinants. Prior to the p r i n c i p l e of Normalisation, the mentally retarded led segregated l i v e s : primary s o c i a l i s a t i o n was impaired. The advent of mainstreaming and d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n necessitated secondary s o c i a l i s i n g agents, such as the coaches, to introduce and interpret the dominant culture i n order to f a c i l i t a t e integration. An understanding of the s o c i a l stock of knowledge of each culture and inherent relevance structures promotes meaningful communication on the part of the mentally retarded. The desire to "not be l i k e a k i d " communicates the i n t e r n a l i s a t i o n of the athletes awareness of the pervasive paternalism that shaped the formative years of t h e i r l i v e s . This contrasts with the normal adult who does not generally share a concern with behaving " l i k e a k i d " . The assumption i s that one's behaviour matures with age. A c c e s s i b i l i t y to s o c i a l stock of knowledge requires strategy i n the form of impression management, rapport, front stage and back stage performance employed by a l l actors. Sport culture i s incorporated by the athletes in many ways. Nicknames bestowed upon Special Olympic athletes are reminiscent of those given to Sport Heroes but also r e f l e c t aspects of the mental retardation subculture. The stigma of being mentally 6 0 retarded i s counteracted by the status o£ being a winner in a sporting arena. Patterns of the mainstream sport culture are evident and point to the normalising influence of Special Olympics. "ILB Upset^ but Î m Trying to Deal with i t in a Proper Way" Goffman i n Frazier (1976, p. 34-35) says that what " . . . f i r s t draws attention to the patients' condition i s conduct that i s "inappropriate i n the s i t u a t i o n . " But the decision as to whether or not a given act i s inappropriate must often be a lay decision, simply because we have no formal documentation of the various behavioural subcultures in our society, l e t alone the standards of conduct operative i n each of them. ...Further, since inappropriate behaviour i s t y p i c a l l y behaviour that someone does not l i k e and f i n d s extremely troublesome, decisions concerning i t tend to be p o l i t i c a l , i n the sense of expressing the special in t e r e s t s of some p a r t i c u l a r f a c t i o n or person rather than i n t e r e s t s that can be said to be above the concerns of any p a r t i c u l a r grouping... (Frazier, 1976, p. 34-35). The above quote i s i l l u s t r a t e d in the following excerpt. When I worked at Tranquille i n s t i t u t i o n , I had great d i f f i c u l t y convincing the s t a f f to bring the residents to the gymnasium aft e r dinner. The gymnasium was situated within half a block of the dining h a l l . The excuse was that i t would disturb the 6 1 residents emotionally to have t h e i r routine changed i . e . going from the dining h a l l to the ward vs. going from the dining h a l l to the gymnasium. Six months l a t e r , Tranquille was closed. I was in McDonalds' in North Vancouver and saw three former residents of Tranquille ordering burgers. Their "routine" was obviously changed, yet they displayed no emotional disturbance. Bercovici (1981) argues that "...the f a c t of separation, segregation and i s o l a t i o n from the larger community or culture i s , i n i t s e l f , conducive to the development of 'subculture'" <p. 138). Her view i s that the ...individuals concerned, in addition to being inhabitants of a segregated s o c i a l system, d i f f e r from 'normal' persons i n the mainstream culture not so much for reasons of physical or mental d i s a b i l i t y but because of t h e i r l i f e h i s t o r i e s and t h e i r s o c i a l i s a t i o n experiences (which amount to t h e i r acculturation) have resulted i n a view of both s e l f and the s o c i a l world that may d i f f e r s i g n i f i c a n t l y from the 'Weltanschauung' of the dominant culture (p. 138). Berger and Luckman (1967) argue that, primary s o c i a l i s a t i o n i s more deeply entrenched in consciousness than what i s int e r n a l i s e d in secondary s o c i a l i s a t i o n as i n , for example, the Normalisation movement. Furthermore, s o c i a l i s a t i o n continues through l i f e so ...secondary s o c i a l i s a t i o n ... must deal with an already formed s e l f and an already i n t e r n a l i s e d world. ...the already in t e r n a l i s e d r e a l i t y has a tendency to p e r s i s t . Whatever new contents are now to be int e r n a l i s e d must somehow be superimposed upon t h i s already present r e a l i t y (p. 129). The above indicates primary s o c i a l i s a t i o n of the mentally retarded may be impaired. The extent of primary s o c i a l i s a t i o n i s evident i n the following quote: In a society of t h i s kind, the in d i v i d u a l c r i p p l e or bastard has v i r t u a l l y no subjective defense against the stigmatic i d e n t i t y assigned to him. He i s what he i s supposed to be, to himself as to his s i g n i f i c a n t others and to the community as a whole. ... He i s imprisoned in the objective r e a l i t y of h i s society, although that r e a l i t y i s subjectively present to him i n an a l i e n and truncated manner (Berger and Luckman, 1967, p.152). 63 It has not been long since mentally retarded people could even l i v e in neighbourhoods because of fa u l t y perceptions and b e l i e f s . I t has taken much lobbying of municipal council members in the face of neighbourhood opposition before City Council approved the f i r s t group home "Garry house" in the lower mainland of Vancouver. To further t h i s point, Bercovici <1981> discusses the diversion from " c u l t u r a l l y prescribed l i f e - p a t t e r n s " of people who have been i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s e d or reside in group homes. Conversely, normal peers in mainstream society ...engage i n a l l or many of the important i n s t i t u t i o n s of the society that mark the progression of an individual along the path from b i r t h to death. These individuals having been inhabitants of a separate subsystem, have acquired over long years...not just d i f f e r e n t "behaviours" compared to mainstream persons, but a d i f f e r e n t set of assumptions about the world and di f f e r e n t strategies for physical survival and f o r the maintenance of s e l f esteem (Bercovici, 1981, p.138). The l i f e patterns of t h i s group of athletes i s interesting in that they, as a group, represent a continuum from i n s t i t u t i o n to integration. Residence, education, l e i s u r e , employment and access to transportation and community resources as well as freedom of choice concerning marital and f e r t i l i t y r i g h t s have made monumental and h i s t o r i c t r a n s i t i o n s . For example, some of 64 -the athletes have been i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s e d . Some l i v e i n group homes such as Garry House and a few l i v e "semi-independently" in the Arlington townhouse development. Others l i v e with parents in private apartments ( l i v i n g independently under the same roof) or with r e l a t i v e s and foster parents. S t i l l , there are those who have graduated from group home l i v i n g to independent l i v i n g in the community. Almost a l l of the athletes went to Oakridge, a segregated school, although a few have gone or go to regular high schools (special classes) and pa r t i c i p a t e i n Special Olympics, a segregated program as opposed to regular recreation programs (although some have attempted to do so). Therefore, the group shares a common l i f e - p a t t e r n that d i f f e r s from the experience of mainstream youth. This d i s p a r i t y i s well stated by Berger and Luckman (1967): My interaction with others i n everyday l i f e i s , therefore, constantly affected by our common pa r t i c i p a t i o n in the availa b l e s o c i a l stock of knowledge. The s o c i a l stock of knowledge includes knowledge of my s i t u a t i o n and i t s l i m i t s . P a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the s o c i a l stock of knowledge thus permits the "l o c a t i o n " of individ u a l s in society and the "handling" of them i n the appropriate manner (p. 39) . The athletes p a r t i c i p a t e in the s o c i a l stock of knowledge of mental retardation composed of: group homes, behaviour managagement, spe c i a l schools, segregated and integrated classrooms, d i s a b i l i t y allowances. Special Olympics, s o c i a l workers, therapists and advocates as well as r e s t r i c t e d freedom regarding such i n s t i t u t i o n s as marriage, reproduction, consumerism and f i n a n c i a l decision making - i n sum, the "mental retardation system". The coaches p a r t i c i p a t e i n a s o c i a l stock of knowledge of mainstream culture: nuclear family; continuum of education from preschool to kindergarten to elementary and secondary school, trade/technical school, university or work; l i t t l e league, community l e i s u r e , competitive sport and free choice concerning marriage, children, r e l i g i o n and p o l i t i c a l a c t i v i t y - a l l of which flows r e l a t i v e l y unimpeded and i s available or accessible consistently anywhere in western society. The athletes and coaches each have a separate and d i s t i n c t s o c i a l stock of knowledge. Neither s o c i a l stock of knowledge i s r e a d i l y available and comprehensible to either athletes or coaches. "This i s not possible f o r one who does not p a r t i c i p a t e in t h i s knowledge, such as a foreigner" (Berger and Luckman, 1967, p. 39). According to Berger and Luckman (1967), ...the s o c i a l stock of knowledge d i f f e r e n t i a t e s r e a l i t y by degrees of f a m i l i a r i t y . I t provides complex and detailed information concerning those sectors of everyday l i f e with which I must deal... Thus my 6 6 knowledge of my own occupation and i t a world i a very r i c h and s p e c i f i c , while I have only very sketchy knowledge of the occupational world of others. The s o c i a l stock of knowledge further supplies me with the t y p i f i c a t o r y schemes required f o r the major routines of my everyday l i f e . . . <p. 41). A comment by one of the athletes serves as an example, "we learn at the house not to s i t at home and watch t e l e v i s i o n Get into a club and do things". Integrating the mentally retarded into the community creates opportunities to view the intersection points as in the above quote. Becoming l i t e r a t e i n the new s o c i a l stock of knowledge i s not e n t i r e l y in the control of the "foreigner". Fellow "foreigners" s t r a t i f i e d on a lower or higher scale can help interpret or r e f l e c t advances made. An excerpt from a conversation with one of the athletes exemplified t h i s p r i n c i p l e : Pat says take Richmond player o f f to the aide and show them how i t ' s done. Dan and I and some of the other guys have been through what they're going through. We know what they're doing wrong. We can show them the r i g h t way. Change agents (possibly coaches) or f r i e n d l y natives can smooth the way but there w i l l be those who resent the intrusion of something "foreign", r e s i s t and create b a r r i e r s (possibly leaders of community recreation programs or teams). The t y p i f i c a t o r y schemes required for the major routines of l i f e are 6 7 d i f f e r e n t today than they were f i f t y years ago in the i n s t i t u t i o n , but they are becoming one and the same i d e a l l y , in the eyes of the Normalisation movement. My experience of coaching counterpointed impressions stemming from the stock of knowledge of the dominant culture and the submersion and growing awareness of the viewpoints and consciousness of the subculture of mental handicap. When I heard a p a r t i c u l a r dialogue from the f i l m "I heard the owl c a l l my Name", i t c l a r i f i e d the notion of relevance structures for me. Because "My knowledge of everyday l i f e i s structured i n terms of relevances... The basic relevance structures r e f e r r i n g to everyday l i f e are presented to me ready-made by the s o c i a l stock of knowledge i t s e l f " (Berger & Luckman, 1967, p. 42-43). The pr i e s t asked his Native guide "How big i s your v i l l a g e ? " The Native, Mike Wallace r e p l i e d "White man always say that 'how big i s your village-" you just don't get i t . My v i l l a g e i s so big that i t never gets rained on because the r a i n i s my v i l l a g e too. And the wind and the sea. Get i t ? A l l the history of my t r i b e and a l l of i t s legends. That's my v i l l a g e too and me, I am the v i l l a g e and the v i l l a g e i s me. You don't get i t . " What i s the framework behind the question? Is the question relevant semantically? When I ask "what i s a good coach?" (See Appendix D - p. 180) and the response i s "after f l o o r hockey, take a break, f i n i s h , coffee time" i t s t r u c t u r a l l y jars my senses. I have to stop and think about t h i s response because my unconscious anticipated response i s f o i l e d . I may anticipate a categorical l i s t of att r i b u t e s such as "patient", "good l i s t e n e r " , even "good 63 knowledge to teach". One may never have heard the word "competition" because of u n f a m i l i a r i t y with the setting in which the word i s used. I t might be l o g i c a l to respond out of context such as competition i s "one reason you go to j a i l " . An appropriate answer might be e l i c i t e d i f an a l t e r n a t i v e word i s offered such as "winning". When I framed my interview according to sport terminology and jargon, I found the responses r e f l e c t e d streams of consciousness from the mental retardation subculture. For instance, passing and covering would disallow t h i s p a r t i c u l a r athlete to say "I've never heard that word? What do you mean?" It would be important, rather, to assert an answer in a confident manner, even i f i t i s the wrong answer. "Not Being Like KicT Other themes from the stream of consciousness of mental retardation involved "not being l i k e a k i d " . Concern with t h i s would not l i k e l y be a relevant concern for a team of 'normal' people in t h e i r twenties and t h i r t i e s , who would expect treatment b e f i t t i n g his/her chronological age. Another example i s evident in the following exchange "What i s a good coach?" " t e l l s us how to get a bus". We, as t y p i c a l t h i r t y year olds might use our own resources in f i n d i n g out t h i s information or would automatically know what "getting a bus" entailed i . e . location, time, r i g h t amount of money, destination etc. One more age inappropriate comment concerned the question "what are the coaches expectations?" (See Appendix D - p. 182) "They expect us to respect them. To l i s t e n . To stay out of trouble and t e l l us i f we're going anywhere. Expect good sportsmanship and good 6 9 behaviour and conduct at a l l times - not l i k e a k i d " . Yet t h i s very comment sounds l i k e the expectations a coach would have of a c h i l d . One more example re l a t e s to s o c i a l i s i n g . " S o c i a l i s i n g i s r e a l l y good. You got to have to be r e a l l y grownup to be around people. You got to act appropriately or people won't want to be with you". Another dimension concerning relevance structures can be discerned in the athletes' perceptions of the coach. The concern with "not being l i k e a k i d " was evident i n comments that referred to the coaches as either "being very nice" or not nice " h e ' l l y e l l and shout at players". An adult from mainstream culture who was high in s e l f esteem would be expected to have the personal power to assert himself i n uncomfortable interactions. But the coach was viewed as the ultimate authority "the boss". My relevance structures in t e r s e c t with the relevance structures of others at many points...An important element of my knowledge of everyday l i f e i s the knowledge of relevance structures of others. The relevance structures of the mentally retarded abutt the relevance structures of the coaches. "Knowing" what was appropriate to share or talk about i n the sporting context had to be learned; for example, Cathy, on the very f i r s t meeting, t o l d me that Mike (an athlete) her former fiance "he asked me to marry him July 2" had battered her but she was now engaged to Jack. Sam would comment on his own behaviour 7 0 in t h i s way "that i s inappropriate behaviour" or "that's s i l l y , i s n ' t i t ? And i t ' s bad for your l i p s . And the doctor says so". One athlete said to himself during warmup "I should have brought a skipping rope. I should have brought crutches." On the other hand, I was constantly wondering what to say to athletes that would communicate meaning between us. I could see t h i s problem existed for coaches as well. During a game, I observed Pat (coach) asking L i s a repeatedly how many s h i f t s she had played. She looked at him but did not answer, only reddening s l i g h t l y . She did not say she did not know, or ask him what he meant but then he did not ask her i f she understood, he did not restate the question either - rather, he gave up "oh, never mind." If one had not played in team sports in school i t would not be a term commonly understood. It i s not used in t e l e v i s i o n sportscasts. Terminology i s not something I heard the coaches e x p l i c i t l y define, although they may have in a previous season. In the following observation the knowledge of the relevance structures of others i s lacking, r e s u l t i n g in poor communication between a coach and an athlete. Just p r i o r to a warmup, I overheard Greg (athlete) complaining about work (he works in a workshop) and a coach saying to him i n an unsympathetic way "we a l l have to work, Greg." He responded e n t h u s i a s t i c a l l y "yeah!" His way of intersecting worlds might be as such: see, I work and I know people usually complain about work, and so I am going to complain about work (but I love going to work). Later in the season, Greg approached me and t o l d me that he "worked today. 71 I'm always on c a l l . The guy I replace gets drunk on alcohol and I have to go i n . I work at Varco. My dad works s h i f t s at Mac Bloe. He'd come home, take off his boots and go to sleep. Didn't watch t e l e v i s i o n or nothing. Now he's r e t i r e d . You shouldn't work s h i f t s <I had t o l d him that I worked nights). It ' s too hard on you." So work i s taken for granted by mainstream culture but i s a status symbol to the athletes. Yet here i s an example of mimicking a c u l t u r a l perspective without a c t u a l l y sharing the f e e l i n g s personally. Impression Management A predominant feature of the study revolved around impression management. Impression Management i s a feature of a l l s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n , a necessary condition for continued s o c i a l i n t e r a c t i o n . Methodological procedures must be employed which w i l l reveal not only the performances staged for the observer, but the nature of the e f f o r t s which go into producing i t and the backstage si t u a t i o n s i t conceals. Participant observation always involves impression management (Berreman, 1962, p.3). The ethnographer comes to his subjects as an unknown, generally unexpected and generally unwanted intruder. Their impressions of him w i l l determine the kinds of and v a l i d i t y of data to which he w i l l be able to gain access and the degree of success of his work. The ethnographers and subjects are both performers and audience to one another. They have to judge one anothera mistakes, motives and other a t t r i b u t e s on the basis of short but intensive contact and then decide what d e f i n i t i o n of themselves to project; what they w i l l reveal and what they w i l l conceal and how best to do i t . Each w i l l convey to the other the impression that w i l l best serve his interests as he sees them (Berreman, 1962, p.11). Unlike Berreman's description, I came to my subjects (some of them) as a "known", somewhat expected and, i f not wanted then, tolerated intruder. Some athletes f e l t an immediate sense that I was f a m i l i a r , although they could not place me. One athlete remembered at the very l a s t event of the hockey season, a dinner at the Pizza Hut, "I know you, you were at the f i t n e s s t e s t at UBC a few years ago - yeah, yeah I never forget a face." But most athletes were strangers to me and I to them. I did not know the coaches and had anticipated some suspicion and s e l f consciousness. But they were the opposite - f r i e n d l y , h e l p f u l , open and nonintrusive. At the end of the season, I was included in everything and was given a T s h i r t with the team logo and a framed picture of, and from, the team. It i s worth noting that I was surprised to be included i n everything: whether i t was due to s t i l l f e e l i n g l i k e an outsider or because I i d e n t i f i e d more with the researcher rather than the coaching r o l e , I do not know. 73 I dressed i n "coaching gear" such as sweatpants, T s h i r t and runners, although I always brought a briefcase. But other coaches came i n business clothes complete with fol d e r s or briefcases and changed at the gymnasium. I f e l t that I f i t in quite well, based on outward appearance. The athletes impressions of me must have varied because my rel a t i o n s h i p with them changed dramatically over time. I n i t i a l l y , i t was very uncomfortable while we adjusted to one another; I noticed that another rookie coach was having s i m i l a r d i f f i c u l t i e s . In my case, one of the male athletes was too forward i n situ a t i o n s such as i n s i s t i n g that I give him a ride "somewhere" and I found myself staying clear of him. On one occasion, i n p a r t i c u l a r , I r e a l i s e d at the end of the season that he was c a l l i n g me coach, treating me with respect and sharing his fee l i n g s i n an almost innocent way "gee, I haven't played t h i s good i n a long time." In other cases, athletes kept t h e i r distance from me, some watched me from across the gymnasium. When I smiled encouragingly to them they would quickly s h i f t t h e i r gaze. Later in the season, they were the ones who d a l l i e d around me, gossiping and laughing. In the s i t u a t i o n of the male rookie coach, some of the female athletes were bold, running up to him and patting his posterior, bringing a camera and asking to have t h e i r picture taken with him. He appeared to be s e l f conscious. He was very 74 alarmed one practise aa he ran towards me and t o l d me that Carol was b i t i n g herself and banging her head against the wall and he did not know what to do. I was alarmed as well and we both consulted the head coach, who was completely unperturbed and spoke to the athlete. Later, t h i s same athlete transformed from a withdrawn, nonverbal i n d i v i d u a l to a chatting, animated person who offered to make us s l i p p e r s - George (the male coach) got a free pair and she charged me "ten bucks". It was l i k e the ...popular notion that although impersonal contacts between strangers are p a r t i c u l a r l y subject to stereotypical responses, as persons come to be on closer terms with each other t h i s categoric approach recedes and gradually sympathy, understanding, and a r e a l i s t i c assessment of personal q u a l i t i e s take i t s place. Moving past the i n i t i a l tactfulness and distance they are l i k e l y to receive; they may attempt to move on to a more 'personal' plane where in f a c t t h e i r defect w i l l cease to be a c r u c i a l f a c t o r " (Goffman, 1963, p. 52). This process has been described by Davis (1964) as "breaking through" (p. 128). And there were athletes whose demeanor was consistent throughout the season, such as Grant who compulsively badgered any coach/volunteer within range about the number of new s t i c k s the team owned, what would be served at the tournament banquet or whether we should xerox schedules. 75 Rapport The o f f i c i a l term for a good rela t i o n s h i p with an informant i s rapport. Agar (1980) states possible reasons why, past the i n i t i a l stage, an informant might t a l k to you: "One i s that you are a person who i s genuinely interested i n and respectful of anothers' point of view. There usually aren't many people around l i k e that. Second, most people enjoy t e l l i n g t h e i r story to an interested l i s t e n e r (as quoted from an athlete: "I need to t a l k to someone anyway"). Third, you are interested i n adapting to group l i f e - sharing t h e i r l i v i n g conditions, t h e i r food and so on. And fourth, you are perfectly w i l l i n g , probably i n s i s t e n t l y so, to reciprocate i n reasonable ways with the people you work with" <p. 88). I occasionally provided rides home and bought coffee for athletes when we went out after a practise or game. Agar suggests that "you are a potential f r i e n d of sort. But you need to select informants who can inform." Agar (1980) also points out i n t e r e s t i n g l y that "...most of them, I think, had c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s that would have attracted me to someone in ordinary l i f e - though there's always that boundary problem" (p. 88). My main informant was someone to whom I would have been attracted i n ordinary l i f e for many reasons. I r e a l l y l i k e d him, found him approachable, honest, open, a r t i c u l a t e , wholesome, an a l t r u i s t i c person - f r i e n d to a l l on the team. He had been involved in many aspects of the system i . e . l o c a l association, B.C. Special Olympics, Oakridge, work stations and had attended Berwick at one point. He was available to go for coffee anytime. 7 6 gave me hia home phone number, introduced me to hia parents ( i t was Cams' mother who had c a l l e d a f t e r the l e t t e r of i n i t i a l contact had gone out asking "how many people were going to be t r a i p s i n g through") and knew almost a l l the athletes in many more contexts than just hockey. Cam did not have any behaviour aberrations that could make communication d i f f i c u l t . He was two months older than me so we had commonality of age. I did not enjoy such good rapport with a l l informants. I was caught in a few s i t u a t i o n s where "...each potential source of discomfort for him when we are with him can become something we sense he i s aware of, aware that we are aware of, and even aware of our state of awareness about his awareness" (Goffman, 1963, p. 18). A common reply to a question was "why do you want to know?" An example of t h i s i s when I was consulting athletes about school programs, ignorant of the connection to stigma because I did not have personal background information on the athletes. "Ed, where did you go to school?" "In New Westminster" (something pricked in my consciousness as Woodlands i s i n New Westminster and I had known that Ed's family l i v e d i n Burnaby). I asked i f he remembered the name of the school. He said "I could t e l l you but i t wouldn't be necessary." I said "Okay, I was interested i n what kind of physical a c t i v i t y you had when you were young, for example, did you have P.E. and i f you did, what did you do in your c l a s s ? " He said "Well, okay i t was Woodlands. We had compulsory recreation, gymnasium, baseball." This r e f l e c t s the p a t e r n a l i s t i c theme of i n s t i t u t i o n a l l i f e in contrast to the choices Ed i s now able to determine for himself. I asked another man what I asked Ed and he said "I went to private school." I 7 7 asked a l l of -the athletes the same question but one of the female athletes in the same age bracket t o l d me she had gone to "Our Lady of Sorrows i n grades 1,2,3 and then to private school." This experience s h i f t e d me close to the phenomena of going "native" which i s defined by Becker (1971) in Reinhartz (1979) as: ...becoming i d e n t i f i e d with the ideology of the dominant fac t i o n in the organisation or community and framing the questions to which his response provides answers so that no one w i l l be hurt...He unwittingly chooses problems that are not l i k e l y to cause trouble or inconvenience to those he found to be such pleasant associates (p. 168). Although, I do not think t h i s had been a problem at a l l up to t h i s point, i t began to be as I learned more and more about the d i f f i c u l t l i v e s some of the athletes led. My s e n s i t i v i t i e s were alerted by the responses to my questions on schooling. I had evoked memories from the shameful past - i t was obvious that nobody wanted to be linked with that i n s t i t u t i o n . It became apparent that t h i s information, according to Goffman (1963), i s kept hidden for the purpose of maintaining an id e n t i t y or d i s i d e n t i f y i n g with the stigma that the symbol of an i n s t i t u t i o n c a r r i e s with i t . 78 Front and Back Stage The f a l s e fronts or backstage-frontatage impressions had to be broken through as "one reaches threshold aft e r threshold of c l a r i t y and understanding only to s l i d e gradually into more murkiness, having recognised how very much more one must know to answer the newer, more precise questions" ( E s t r o f f , 1981, x v i ) . U n t i l I began to spend time with athletes outside of the gymnasium, at McDonalds, d r i v i n g home or t a l k i n g on the phone, I thought they were very passive. My impressions changed immediately and d i f f e r e n t information was revealed to me at McDonalds versus at the gymnasium or i n the lobby. That information and the way in which i t was conveyed changed according to who was with me. A grouping of four men vs. a boy and g i r l f r i e n d couple vs. three men and one woman vs. myself and one other athlete. Thus I came to know that language use " . . . i s a behavioural phenomenon that i s e s p e c i a l l y s e n s i t i v e to the settings i n which i t occurs" (Sabsay and Kernan, 1981, p. 283). Evans (1983) elaborates by suggesting that conversational repertoires of the mentally retarded are limited not by the handicap but by the l i m i t of experiences. As rapport developed and as I began to vary the settings in which I interacted with the athletes, I became aware of what Goffman c a l l s "performances". My f i r s t month of involvement with the team had resulted i n f i e l d notes that commented on what "did not happen" more than on what "did occur". My February 22 fi e l d n o t e s record my impressions "They don't pair o f f and have conversations. They don't ask questions i . e . challenge or say 7 9 'Do we go here?' 'Is t h i s what you want?' They don't check out anything. The guys don't tr e a t the g i r l members d i f f e r e n t l y . " I believe t h i s was culture-bound. I could see what, according to my background experiences, was not there because I was expecting "certain things" such as "complaining about lack of f l o o r time." As Schutz (1970) said " I t s u f f i c e s , therefore, that I can reduce the others' act to i t s ' t y p i c a l motive including t h e i r reference to t y p i c a l s i t u a t i o n s , t y p i c a l ends, t y p i c a l means etc" (p.180). But when the front stage performances and back stage performances were revealed I seemed to break through my own culture-bound perceptions. Front region (or stage) r e f e r s to the place where the performance i s given. The performance of an ind i v i d u a l in a front region may be as an e f f o r t to give the appearance that h i s a c t i v i t y i n the regions maintains and embodies certain standards. The way in which the performer t r e a t s the audience while engaged i n ta l k with them as matters of politeness and the way i n which the performer comports himself within v i s u a l or aural range of the audience but not necessarily engaged i n talk with them. A back region (stage) may be defined as a place r e l a t i v e to a given performance where the impression fostered by the performer i s knowingly contradicted as a matter of course. The back region i s the place where no member of the audience w i l l intrude. Since the v i t a l secrets 80 of the show are v i s i b l e backstage and since performers behave out of character while there, i t i s natural to expect that the passage from the front region to the back region w i l l be kept closed to members of the audience iGoidtman, 1963, p. 112). There were differment types of performance. One as a "team" performance and one as an i n d i v i d u a l "player". The second week of practise, I was standing by the entrance to the gymnasium and overheard th i n Cathy and Al t a l k i n g . Al was very animated - I had not seen him l i k e t h i s before and he was talking quickly "Judy i s dear f r i e n d of mine. Works at Fraser workshop". Cathy said "I know her from Heroes. I l o s t my temper. Judy got f i r e d cause she wouldn't work at the Red Cross." I walked up to them ant i c i p a t i n g joining into the conversation. "Hi, A l . " Al immediately p h y s i c a l l y "contracted" with his head down, maintaining a posture of absolute s t i l l n e s s while f u r t i v e l y glancing at me sideways. He refused to respond and I f e l t stupid, l i k e I had done something wrong that I could not correct. The "retarded" posture was more or less the way he behaved at practises but I had caught him offguard. I was s t i l l an outsider to him and I was not supposed to know that he could converse in t h i s manner - as though I might have higher expectations of him i f I did. Later in the season, I observed a difference between practises and games where the only members present were team members from Special Olympics and games with nonretarded players. a i During practises (and t h i s took a while to r e a l i s e ) athletes did not correct each other, although Sam would f l i p his hands, s p i t or repeat phrases over and over. It was as though, we as coaches, were privy to t h i s private culture, as i t were. But during games (with outsiders or when outsiders were present) behaviour that was largely ignored or taken for granted became unacceptable and the athletes distanced themselves from i t . For example, Sam was t o l d during games with nonretarded people to "put a l i d on i t . Sam, put a l i d on the Camay b i t . Sam, shut up." I also observed that the normal spectators pretended nothing was happening, which s i g n i f i e d to me, t h e i r acknowledgement of his deviance and t h e i r lowered s o c i e t a l expectations. The rules were d i f f e r e n t in many respects. F i r s t , the athletes acknowledged the inappropriate behaviour and d i s i d e n t i f l e d with i t and secondly, the normal spectators did not acknowledge the inappropriate behaviour as they might have i f Sam had been a regular, rowdy teenager. Coffee times at McDonalds presented another opportunity to observe front and backstage behaviour. Talk was incessant when we l e f t the gymnasium. The content was gossipy, opinionated, co l o u r f u l and detailed and i t became apparent that they a l l knew each other quite well. But t h i s was i n no way obvious at the gymnasium other than boy/girl f l i r t a t i o n s . Relationship t a l k was apparently acceptable material in the sport context whereas sport ta l k i . e . c r i t i c i s m of each other or t a l k about the coaches was safer done out of the gymnasium i n the restaurant. "Chris (the coach) chewed him (Kevin) out l a s t week for not showing up". 8£ "Remember in soccer, Brian would stand around and we'd do a l l the work." It seemed the reverse to what I had been s o c i a l i s e d to do. Nobody challenged the coaches at practises, but nobody was c r i t i c a l of th e i r team coaches i n the backstage region after practises e i t h e r . The coaches were the "bosses", "teachers", " f r i e n d s . " Nicknames Biklen and Moseley (1988) wrote a paper t i t l e d "Are you Retarded?" "NoA Î m C a t h o l i c " ! Qualitative Methods i n the Study of People with Severe Handicaps which described the experience of communicating with mentally retarded informants. One t h i r d of the Vancouver Floor Hockey team had d i f f i c u l t y i n communicating verba l l y . The range in l i n g u i s t i c a b i l i t y was vast and i t was tempting to devote most of my time to those who were easy to understand verbally. But there was more involved than just language expressed. What was the s i g n i f i c a n c e of the words spoken or the actions displayed? The richness of expression was enormous: nicknames; l y i n g ; s t a t i s t i c a l r e c i t a t i o n ; silence by choice; compulsive t a l k i n g ; sports t a l k ; imitation laden with themes from contemporary society such as normalisation; behaviour management; gender s o c i a l i s a t i o n ; workshop and group home experiences etc. Stack (1975) describes the usage of nicknames in her study on strategies for su r v i v a l i n a black community as a bonding source. "Gordie Howe and Wayne Gretzky b©l§ DQt" Although these athletes were playing f l o o r hockey, transference was made to Ice Hockey. A l l t h e i r sports heroes were Ice Hockey players and references were made constantly to Ice Hockey games, scores and trades. Like Ice Hockey players, these Special Olympic players had nicknames that, in some cases, were borrowed from the ice hockey players but i n other cases, were r e f l e c t i v e of the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of the p a r t i c u l a r player. The nicknames were given to a variety of outstanding characters, not just a p a r t i c u l a r group of friends or the best playex*s. Grandpa Walker As Jess said "Grandpa Walker i s Steves' nickname". Steve i s a huge man with beard and glasses. He drives his own truck which he bought himself and t h i s i s rare, nobody else on the team has a driving l i c e n s e . He i s goalie for the D r i l l e r s . Steve i s very gentle but speaks with d i f f i c u l t y and smiles a l l the time. He i s also known as one of the two 'GAS CHAMBERS'. When I asked Jess why Steve was c a l l e d the Gas Chamber, he made a motion l i k e he was s l i t t i n g his throat so t h i s along with Steves' p r o f i c i e n t goaltending might mean that he i s a dangerous player. Steves' Group Home s t a f f came and played a game along with the Mount Pleasant Community Centre Staff against the team. The Gas Chamber Jess i s the second gas chamber, he usually plays centre and i s an excellent player. He i s very serious about the game. After Jess had a close c a l l on scoring during one game, he held up two 84 fingers to show just, how close i t had been. He came back to the bench and said " I t was close. I ' l l do i t by any means. By any means." I asked him what he meant and he said "Anyway I can." He uses c o l o u r f u l language " I ' l l haunt the other team and make mincemeat out of them", once when the ri n g went clear across the gymnasium, he commented s a r c a s t i c a l l y "What went past me? A UFO?" During one p a r t i c u l a r l y e x c i t i n g game he sat on the bench sweating, waiting to play and was the only team member that I ever heard allude to not being played enough "I'm already r u s t i n g " . He also was the only player I ever heard challenge the coaches. When Pat once asked him to go defense and he responded "Me? Why defense?" He worked to outdo his personal best "I'm going to score s i x goals. I ' l l beat my old record", "I'm going to get a hat t r i c k " . Jess paid close attention to t e c h n i c a l i t i e s and analyzed plays "Why did they f l i p i t up?" "Two minutes for high s t i c k i n g " He complimented and acknowledged other players "Great Goal Tending, Terry", "she just s t i f f e d i t r i g h t i n " , "you don't get many penalties. Neither do I" and "you can s t a r t c a l l i n g Dan, Greg Adams" (after a p a r t i c u l a r l y good game that Dan had played) but also c r i t i q u e d them "that was so funny" (after Richmond acored on t h e i r own net) or alluding to Sam "Hey Cam, you know why that guy was h i t t i n g himself?" Jess provided information on other teams. After Jordan ( a mentally retarded referee and former manager of the Burnaby team) asked Pat how to c a l l aggressive playing, Jess said " L i s a , Terry and I are enemies to Burnaby. We used to play with Burnaby. I used to be Captain. Jordan was coach. He's the one who cut us" I asked him why he did that. He said "Beats me". Jess always wears a poker a s expression regardless of what, he i s saying. The rumour was that he was engaged but he never mentioned a g i r l f r i e n d and never talked about the topic of dating or women. Pokie A l i a s the E l e c t r i c Chair A l i a s the Terminator Cam plays defense with his g i r l f r i e n d on the D r i l l e r s team. He i s a very good player and very popular with the team. The nickname Pokie alludes to "Pokie" Reddick who plays for the Winnipeg Jets. But the other names contradict his nature which i s very gentle, nonaggressive and kind. However, i t i s possible that the names imply some l e v e l of irony or respect by team mates and that, even though he does not have a k i l l e r nature, he i s one of the guys or one of the leaders. He l i v e s at home i n h i s own apartment and i s concerned about the welfare of his family and fr i e n d s . He t o l d me repeatedly that his mother was sick and that his parents were concerned about him "I t e l l my father and mother I'm doing okay. They ask me. They have confidence i n me. They're building up my confidence." He i s very a l t r u i s t i c . When I asked what he expected of himself, he said "to be good at the sport I'm in and to help other people. Once I did a volunteer 30b - I was a courier for wheelchair sports." He said "I l i k e to be friends with everyone...Pat says take Richmond player o f f to the side and show them how i t s done. Dan and I and some of the other guys have been through what they're going through. We know what they're doing wrong. We can show them the r i g h t way." He 8 6 t o l d me that he "met Murray downtown l a s t Tuesday. I took him to a show. I was r e a l l y surprised. His aunt gave me money to take him. She's b l i n d . Apparently, he doesn't have any fr i e n d s . She t o l d me that. He l i v e s in Burnaby." Cam shows a l o t of consideration for others "I've got to work 11:00 - 1:30 a.m. There's rodents at Super Valu. I can't say rat s cause i t might scare L i s a . " When Jess complained that he had to play defense. Cam immediately offered to play with him, " I ' l l help you Jess" Cam did not seem to lack confidence in playing the game but he often checked out his impressions "Hey Jo-Ann, i s n ' t Grant o f f s i d e ? " and he was aware that he lacked s o c i a l confidence. He often asked the female coaches how to handle his r e l a t i o n s h i p problems. When he asked Pam i f she could give him Lisa's phone number, Pam said "Ask her yourself, Cam, she's r i g h t there." He also asked me to check out a note he had written to her to aee i f i t was okay. The romance began at the s t a r t of the season and he informed me a l l the way along how i t was going "I f i n a l l y had my date with L i s a , Jo-Ann. We went to her house and had tea with her mom, and brother and her dog. She's going to come over to my house t h i s weekend and play tennis and meet my mom and dad. She's getting a racquet Saturday. Lisa's my g i r l f r i e n d . She's also my defense partner." Cam and Lisa talked about sports when they were alone together "I can beat you at bowling so watch i t " Cam r e p l i e d to Lisa "I was going to go nanananana l i k e the Canucks" "Hey there's a swim meet A p r i l 23 87 and a dance in Coquitlam." "Super Valu beat us f i r s t . That was actually a fun game. The Jewish Community centre beat by one. We beat Burnaby by two, i t was 4-6. We beat Super Valu second. That i s the f i r s t time I saw a penalty shot on Walker." In sp i t e of his apparent and admitted lack of confidence, he also had a side of his personality that was quite proud and of high esteem. I was very fond of Cam and he was popular with his workmates at Super Valu and organized them to come and play the team, and also arranged to have the baker make a cake for Barbs' birthday, "Everyone at Super Valu l i k e d the l e t t e r Pam wrote, the part about me scoring the goal. Pam was making i t a high for me. So they were proud of me, yeah." Like Jess, Cam was observant and a n a l y t i c a l . "They're just standing around. Sam's just standing there. I can't believe i t . If Li s a and me were defense we wouldn't just stand there", "I play defense right? Sam should have checked that guy. Come on Linda" "Defense should be helping." "Uh oh, the referee i s t e l l i n g Joe Smith o f f . See that? It (tension) builds up - but i t does i n any player." He loved to talk about his t r a v e l s , awards and Special Olympic experiences "Steve and I were in Calgary Olympics - t h i r d place. Jess and Lisa went to Toronto. Right Jess?" He also talked about memories related to his team mates "Right, Terry - we rated fourth in Soccer tournament. We came f i r s t place in Chilliwack." "I was his back catcher in Richmond tournament. Keep him of f base. He struck out once. We got him on our team. We gave him Joe for Jack." Cam dropped names "Hey Jo-Ann, I ' l l 63 bring a picture of me and Douglaa M i l l e r . He's the CKVU weatherman." "Jim Robinson was there. He was doing a play by play for us and afte r awards he announced us one by one" "Some of us were on Wide World of Sports" "I was on the radio." It i s not surprising that Cam has had such media exposure, he seems l i k e such a good representative for Special Olympics. Cam spoke of his awards "For the draw I did i t for the Progress club. I t ' s sort of l i k e promoting Special Olympics. People come up and say "Cam you did good" "In f a c t I s t i l l have my medallions. Bowling I came in t h i r d place. Last time when i t was held at UBC I won a gold." He also bragged about getting away with an i n f r a c t i o n . "In that game l a s t monday there were no penalties for the other guy. He was t e l l i n g the referee o f f . Against Super Valu - they didn't catch me with my s t i c k up against my boss. I did i t on purpose. He was going to c a l l a penalty against a l l except me. I knew he didn't see me." Cam i s observant and r e f l e c t i v e . "We should ask Chris tomorrow to use video tape." I said "wouldn't you be nervous?" He r e p l i e d "you could learn by mistakes." Cam watches his team mates and comments on the i r behaviour "Apparently, Carol h i t s Dan when she gets mad. She even h i t s me. The D r i l l e r s have got three g i r l s . " or "That's when Tom was with us. He's rough. He'd get i n trouble. He takes f o o l i s h penalties. Complains to the referee a l l the time." "Sam was mostly standing around. Jason too. I don't know why he doesn't do much. He makes funny sounds (Sam) and talks to himself. Maybe he's got a problem he's trying to work out. He says Sam be quiet to himself." Later, I asked 8 9 George why he thought Sam behaved l i k e that and he aaid "Apparently he'a on medication." During the season. Cam experienced many changes: his mother's i l l n e s s , h is family moving from a l i f e t i m e s residence to another municipality, losing his job (Super Valu closing down) and s t a r t i n g another one at McDonalds and gaining a new g i r l f r i e n d . Chatterbox Grant i s an athlete i n his f o r t i e s . He i s amiable, always smiling but talks v i r t u a l l y nonstop. He i s a persistent and hard working player for the Blasters. His main concern i s with d e t a i l s . He acts l i k e a general manager and can give an account on p r a c t i c a l l y any technical aspect in the operation of the team "These are good s t i c k s . We bought them l a s t year." He i s often given jobs to do by the coach such as d i s t r i b u t i n g forms regarding games or events. He enjoys following laborious procedures and can generally be found in close proximity to the coaches, not the athletes because the athletes are just not interested i n t h i s type of t r i v i a . "A l o t of people l i k e Grant i n t e r f e r e s when people are t a l k i n g . I have problems when Grant ta l k s - can't hear the coaches." When i t was decided that the team would be s p l i t and the Blasters would practise at Simon Fraser School, Grant repeatedly gave me intensive instructions on how to get to the school, even though i t was r i g h t next door to the community centre. The f i r s t few weeks, Grant approached me repeatedly to explain ru l e s "two whistles mean the period i s over". Four times he explained i t to me. Linda knew Grant and mentioned that "Grant got himself into things. I've known him 30 way past f i v e years. Grant l i k e t h i s program and I think I l i k e i t . " Cam also mentioned Grant in a s o c i a l context " L i s a , Grant or Dan would c a l l me to see how my work i s . I c a l l to ask how there work i s . We s o c i a l i s e on the phone" But Grant had l i t t l e tolerance for Sam during a game when the team members were spectators "Put a l i d on i t , Sam" "Sam stop i t " i t ' s "unacceptable". It was c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of Grant to worry, for example: "We should get back up goal tenders for sportsfest." His memory for facta and figures was very good "We've got 24 new s t i c k s f or the game f o r both teams. Barb's ordering 12 new s t i c k s f or the game. So we'll have 24 new s t i c k s " "Chris i s gonna photocopy schedules for the players. A l l the players should have one too so they know when to play. You have to work tonight, L i s a . In A p r i l , Cam has no days o f f " "I can get P h i l a f t e r them i f they get me in the pool with my clothes on." Grant was l i k e an a r c h i v i s t , recording and r e c a l l i n g d e t a i l s from past events "Oh, what a great meal they catered to us at the bowling banquet. Roast beef, mashed potatoes. They are going to have the suspenders after the banquet and they are going to have 134 athletes for the banquet. The seating capacity i s for 200." Grant worried about his friends as well. He said to Linda when she t o l d him she had had twenty d o l l a r s stolen "When you get home, Linda, you should put i t in your wallet." Although Grant 9 1 was a master of d e t a i l , conscious of every move of the team, he was run over three times in front of his apartment. So the nickname Chatterbox was appropriate and s e l f explanatory. "Grant was crying l a s t night when the practise was cancelled." Lazybones Sam i s a u t i s t i c . He i s very good looking, extremely t a l l and big boned and wears cutoffs at practise. It i s not his looks that are disconcerting but h i s behaviour ( s p i t t i n g , repeating nonsense phrases such as "snow, nuisance, bobby bubbles", shaking his hands in front of himself spasmodically, to l i s t some of the behaviour) which appears to be a mystery to other players who comment on i t "Maybe he's got a problem he i s tr y i n g to work out. He says - Sam, be quiet - to himself." "Apparently he's on medication." "Remember when Pat had to t e l l Sam to play up front?" "Hey, Sam, you know why the guy was h i t t i n g himself?" Although the other athletes do not comment to Sam on his language or behaviour during practises, i t bothers them when outside teams come for games and they t e l l him to stop "Sam, put a l i d on i t . " More often, though, they look to the coaches to control him "Pam, Sam's playing Woody Woodpecker i n the washroom. Sam's acting up", "Pam, Sam's making noises." To which Sam blows his l i p s and says "Thats s i l l y , i s n ' t i t ? And i t s ' s bad for your l i p s . And the doctor says so." He blows his l i p s again and says "That ones too much. Put a l i d on the Camay b i t . Bobby bubbles, bobby bubbles. Camay, Camay, Camay, Camay. No more camays, that's s i l l y . " L i s a says "just ignore him." Grant says "put a l i d on i t " and Sam r e p l i e s "Put a l i d on i t and don't take i t 9 £ o f f . Sam, put a l i d on i t and don't move i t , r i g h t ? " "You're driv i n g me up the c e i l i n g with that a i l l y game" "Bobby bubbles. Enough i s enough. Sam that's too much. Can i t . Enough i s enough. 1970. Oh. Oh. Oh. What's your name? Oh. Oh." You want me to stop r a t t l i n g ? That i s inappropriate behaviour. That i s unacceptable behaviour" "Pig, pig, don't be a p i g . " Lisa says " A l l should be about the same l e v e l , not Jason and Sam on team." His language consists of nonsensical phrases such as "nuisance. Snow. workshop." "So that's Super Valu? They're here? So you can't see i t . " Sam stands out on the gymnasium and rarely connects with the team members or the play. But he never missed a practise or game and was always on time. I t r i e d to connect with him and f e l t f r ustrated because verbally or v i s u a l l y , I could not reach him. But t h i s may have been the source of f r u s t r a t i o n for his team mates who couldn't understand him eit h e r . In a way, Sam was stigmatized amongst the "stigmatized". He was an outsider within t h i s group. The Playmaker "What do you c a l l her? Honey?" "The Playmaker." <They a l l laughed uproariously) Linda f i r s t appeared on the f l o o r hockey scene on January 26. I noticed her s i t t i n g on the bench engrossed in a notebook that she held on her lap. She was small, young looking and sweet, wore glasses and had a very lovely smile. I sat down beside her and noticed that the notebook was f i l l e d with math ca l c u l a t i o n s . I asked her what she was doing and she said she had a math t e s t to study f o r . She t o l d me "I work at Heroes. Oh 33 yeah, I know everybody. We're a l l good f r i e n d s . " I asked why she did not play and she said "I can't. My knees have been operated on." I said "So you come out to support them" She said "Yes, yes, I sure do support them" and laughed. The following week Linda showed up with forms to re g i s t e r for the team. Later, when I interviewed Linda I was surprised when she t o l d me "I came out to watch. Then I got into i t . You talked me into i t . You asked me i f I was going to s t a r t and I wanted to learn how to play." She seemed to know exactly what to do and played very well . The next week, she snuggled up to Len, a mentally retarded athlete from a d i f f e r e n t team. The week after that Linda was behaving the same way with Jack, who supposedly was engaged to Cathy who never showed up again after the i n i t i a l p r a c t i s e . Linda became quickly p r o f i c i e n t at the game and scored a goal during the Richmond game. In the f i r s t week of March, the team had organized a birthday party for Barb and, although Bob came with a g i r l c a l l e d Shelley, he ended up s i t t i n g against the wall with his arm around Linda. When I interviewed Linda, she t o l d me she was born in 1969, but I knew her age was 43. "I'm not shy" was an understatement. Linda had a l o t of i n i t i a t i v e , was very verbal and physically expressive. She referred to the coaches as "the bosses" who "teach". They "teach us what to do on the f l o o r and l i s t e n i n g to them" and "they are the ones teaching us to be nice. To teach us to learn more" but she also talked about the "bosses r i g h t s " as "the bosses have a r i g h t to teach us. If we play d i r t y they have 3 4 r i g h t s to t e l l us not to play the next game." She said that ahe wanted her team mates to treat her " r e a l l y nice. Not to be screamed at. To have respect for us." and the coaches to treat her "same thing. But they are the ones teaching us to be nice. To teach us to learn more." She t o l d me that Pat was a good coach "the way he t a l k s to us - very nice. Tries to t e l l me what I'm supposed to do on the f l o o r . Barb too. I have been places where people are not too good. At work. Screaming and y e l l i n g . I didn't l i k e the way the other coach pushed me l a s t night. I thought he was going to hurt me. And I was hurt inside myself. If he just said excuse me, but I didn't l i k e that pushing me. I l i k e people when they hug me. I'm used to that." On the l a s t day of practise, Linda appeared completely unstrung. She c r i e d and t o l d me that the r e a l reason Scott was going to quit the team was because of the pressure Tom was putting on him to give him money. She said tonight Tom was bothering her for money. I asked her i f she wanted to go to the washroom. She came with me and t o l d me that a g i r l on the other team was threatening her with a knife. She said that Hugh s t i l l c a l l s her afte r having put hia hands down her pants. She was upset about Tom bothering her about money and Joe had raped her f r i e n d . She seemed to f e e l better after she had t o l d me a l l t h i s and we went back to the game. But Murray approached her and did what he had seen a l l the other male athletes do - he put his arm around her and she encouraged i t . She said that what the players should do i s "when they are ta l k i n g to us you should stand there and l i s t e n to them and not walk away" and later she again 95 referred to " l i s t e n i n g to the coaches more." She said that she " l i s t e n ( s ) when people t e l l me. That's how I've always learned." She said that "we learn at the house not to s i t at home w a t c h t e l e v i s i o n . Get into a club and do things." and that "I come up face to face s o c i a l i s i n g with other people. To get out i n the world to know what's going on. Like s o c i a l i s i n g with you. I know you very well." She t o l d me that Carrie and Lisa "we go out together. L i s a and me work together. Like s o c i a l i s i n g on a team. We own the house." On March 8, Linda t o l d me she had gotten married before Christmas. This was following the interview i n which she t o l d me she l i v e d i n a group home. George, the volunteer coach had heard and he intercepted Bob who was cuddling Linda "You better watch out, she's a married lady." Linda blushed. Later, we discovered that "being married" was Linda's fantasy. The referees' game, in which the Vancouver team were spectators, offered a view of Linda's relationships with her team mates. Cam had t o l d the Burnaby Lisa "See my g i r l f r i e n d , Lisa?" to which she had responded "you going out with him?" and Linda interjected "I got these two together." Then I heard Linda say to someone "You're gonna get i t tomorrow at work" and Burnaby Lisa again said "You guys work together?" incredulously. Linda said to Grant "Be there. I always talked to the s t a f f about i t " "I have to take my orange p i l l tonight before bed. I got to take one tomorrow morning and one at 1:30." Linda said to the two Lisas "I had to t e l l the s t a f f . The s t a f f had a meeting.." 9 6 Later she said "Someone stole my twenty d o l l a r s . I have that many twenty d o l l a r s . " She held up her fingers to indicate how much i t was. She said "You twit. I'm scratchy cause I have a l l e r g i e s . " On March 21, Cam, Steve, Linda, Terry and I went to McDonalds for coffee after the game for the referees. Linda talked about Bob putting h i s hand down her pants i n the change area i n the gymnasium at Mount Pleasant community centre. She t o l d Cam "I've got to t a l k to you p r i v a t e l y . I t ' s person." She whispered to him and he re p l i e d "you should have screamed." Terry said "I'm the captain. You should have t o l d me. I wouldn't l e t any of that garbage happen. I don't l e t that happen on my team." But Linda behaved in an extremely provocative and f l i r t a t i o u s way towards the athletes. "Up your nose with a rubber hose. Oh that's d i r t y sex t a l k . " Steve was extremely uncomfortable. Cam s p i l l e d his drink and l e f t to get something to clean i t up. Linda said when he l e f t "Camie i s nervous. He's worried about something. I don't know what's bothering him." The conversation turned to sports and la t e r Linda interjected "I think Steve l i k e s that big f a t one. The pregnant one. Oh Sharon i s going to have a baby on Saturday." Terry asked "Twins?" Linda said "No. Lisa's l y i n g . I t ' s a big baby." I asked who Sharon was and Linda said "She's my boss." Linda t o l d me that she was going to "Violence school" to learn how to deal with i t . She t o l d me she had her tubes t i e d l a s t year. And she t o l d me about her marriage, even bringing wedding pictures of herself and " B i l l " . 9 7 When I had coffee with four of the male athletes on the team, one of them, Terry, mentioned that he had one g i r l on his team "Oh well, I don't mind. She's good. Linda." Steve responded "What do you c a l l her? Honey?" Terry quickly retorted "The Playmaker" They a l l laughed uproariously. O r i g i n a l l y , I interpreted t h i s comment as an a l l u s i o n to her f l i r t a t i o u s reputation. Later, I came upon an a r t i c l e i n the Sports section of the Vancouver Sun covering "Rocket Richard" which contained the quote "He wasn't the greatest skater or the best playmaker but inside the blue l i n e he was a fury that goaltenders never forgot". Lindas' nickname suddenly had a double meaning. She was considered a good player by the guys and 'Playmaker' was a nickname that Terry had coined, Terry being the sports jargon buff. I had not heard the term before but having t h i s new information and considering the above f a c t s shed new l i g h t on the meaning of the nickname. Of course, the other f a c t was that the guys had laughed "uproariously" and i n such a way that implied a connection to her f l i r t a t i o u s behaviour. It was witty! The Coaches Dudley This was the name that Carrie had given the new volunteer male coach, George. The g i r l s on the team were infatuated with him. Carol was nonverbal the enti r e season and George had been disconcerted because he caught her b i t i n g herself and banging her head against the wall and had sought help from the head coaches as i n what to do about i t . Later, when Carol began to talk, she 98 brought. George a pair of alippera that ahe had knit for him. She giggled and offered to make me a pair when I admired her work. She said "Sure. That w i l l be ten d o l l a r s . " Carrie wanted me to take a picture of her and George. The male athletes flocked around George as though he were an i d o l . Bed That was my nickname. I was teased constantly because of my purplish ( a r t i f i c i a l ) hair colour. L i s a said " I f God gave you that colour (my natural colour i s brown) then you should leave i t . Why do you colour your hair?" On the other hand, Carrie was fascinated and asked me i f I had dyed i t even more purple and wanted to know exactly how I had done i t . She wanted to know what colour i t used to be. I f e l t l i k e a freak! For the re s t of the season I was referred to as "Hey, Red!" 99 Sport Culture "How about games?" "Not only the game but the practise teaches them exactly how to win. Passing, shooting, one on one, two on two, shooting and passing. Workouts and exercise. But the main thing i s the reds play the yellow. Two points - a win i s two points" "Do you know what the p r i o r i t i e s are?" "Everybody should have p r i o r i t i e s . We are a part of the community and we'll always be a part of the community. We are people trying to accomplish what we want, what we believe i n . Important thing i s to recognise we are here as equal in d i v i d u a l s and therefore we should be treated as i n d i v i d u a l s . Our needs should be attended to because that's what our p r i o r i t i e s are" "You sound experienced." "Eighteen years plus seven years i n a league. Eight years in B.C.S.O." Ed (Special Olympic Athlete) This section presents the perspective that sport and mental retardation are s o c i a l constructs r e f l e c t i n g s o c i e t a l conditions. In a h i s t o r i c a l sense, games and play have given way to sport. Sport and i t s meaning has changed i n accordance with p o l i t i c s and technology. S i m i l a r l y , the meaning of mental retardation has been transformed through economics and p o l i t i c s . Measurement i s s i g n i f i c a n t i n modern sport i n order to o b j e c t i f y success and productivity. The mentally retarded are keenly aware of s o c i a l measurement and now, due to the integration movement, must f i n d ways to "measure up". Sports enhances status and provides one way to achieve t h i s by means of secondary s o c i a l i s a t i o n into the dominant culture. 108 Measurement of Mental retardation i s ...based on observable behaviours over which a person who i s perceived to be incompetent i s assumed to have no control because of i n t e l l e c t u a l impairments. This absence of control, coupled with i n t e l l e c t u a l d e f i c i t s , leads to the devalued status of 'mentally retarded'" (Manion & Bersani, 1987, p.236). Observation and measurement of behaviours and determination of "normalcy" may be approached from the biopsychological or socio-anthropological perspectives. The f i r s t perspective derives i t s ' measures of mental retardation on the use of two models: the pathological and s t a t i s t i c a l . The pathological baaing normalcy on the absence or presence of symptoms and the s t a t i s t i c a l on the measurable t r a i t s which are i n t e l l i g e n c e and adaptive behaviour in the case of mental retardation. However, the socio-anthropological perspective recognises mental retardation as an "...acquired s o c i a l status, defined and perceived according to the type of performance expected of persons holding that status" according to Wolfensberger, (1975) in (Manion & Bersani, 1987, p. 237). This perspective emphasizes the interaction between an individual and his environment and society. 101 ... mental retardation then i s a s o c i a l r o l e or a s o c i a l construct determined and defined by the c o l l e c t i v e l y prescribed behaviours and r o l e expectations of a given s o c i a l network... behaviour becomes contextual and r e f l e c t s tenets of the culture in which i t occurs. Therefore i t can be concluded that mental retardation i s a s o c i a l construct, subject to s o c i a l manipulation increasing or decreasing i t s prevalency simply by redefining the concept of 'normalcy'(Manion & Bersani, 1987, p.238). Sport, l i k e mental retardation, i s a s o c i a l construct. Its r e a l nature and meaning i s t r a n s i t o r y and uncertain. This was exemplified by George Herbert Mead who discussed the relationships between games and play and the s o c i a l s e l f through the symbolic i n t e r a c t i o n i s t t r a d i t i o n . It i s through t h i s t r a d i t i o n that one i s able to view sport as a r e f l e c t i o n of s o c i e t a l systems and a l l that e n t a i l s : values, b e l i e f s , attitudes etc. Jean-Marie Brohm <1978) reaffirms that sport r e f l e c t s or mirrors the s o c i a l conditions that encompass i t . P o s i t i v i s t science has penetrated sport and physical education i n the l a s t 15 years and i s "...able to give an orderly, uncomplicated view of the world of sport and l e i s u r e " (Sparks, 1985, p.2>. H i s t o r i c a l l y , the seeds of positivism in sport and l e i s u r e were planted and grew in the Industrial Revolution and " i t a conquests i n the f i e l d of technology where work and production became the ideal and then the i d o l of the age" (Huizinga, 1955). 102 Brohm (1978) r e i t e r a t e s the notion that modern aports haa been shaped by c a p i t a l i s t i n d u s t r i a l i s a t i o n . From t h i s age, dominance of "experimental and a n a l y t i c a l science, philosophy and reformism. Church and State, economics ... pursued i n dead earnest" over "everything imaginative, f a n c i f u l and f a n t a s t i c " (Huizinga, 1955, p. 192) changed the nature of play forms. Record keeping became s t a t i s t i c s . Rules have become increasingly s t r i c t and detailed. Key words are technology, sytematisation, and accuracy and e f f i c i e n c y and value i s measured. Manion and Bersani (1987) elaborate on the influence of the Industrial Revolution and i t s ' emphasis on urbanisation and i n d u s t r i a l i s a t i o n where "...production as a measure of value in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries" had placed the mentally retarded in the position of being "considered not capable of becoming productive members of society" (p.234). It i s clear that c a p i t a l i s t i n d u s t r i a l i s a t i o n influenced culture i n recent history by the embodiment of measurement in current c u l t u r a l values. Performance, production, time, i n t e l l i g e n c e , can a l l be measured. The introduction of the i n t e l l i g e n c e t e s t by Binet and Simon helped maintain a negative attitude toward mental retardation based on the fear of genetic o r i g i n s and h e r i t a b i l i t y f a c t o r s . It was meant to be a diagnostic 103 tool for special education but became a r i g i d , quantitative device measuring i n t e l l i g e n c e as a fixed and s e l e c t i v e quantity (Manion & Bersani, 1987, p. 235). The socio-anthropological perspective sees mental retardation as a s o c i a l status to which a person i s assigned: ... due to behavioural patterns manifested by the individual and the evaluation of that behaviour by the culture. An achieved status i s acquired through virtue of an i n d i v i d u a l s ' perceived competence or incompetence as i t i s evaluated by others i n the s o c i a l system. This s o c i a l status i s not s t r u c t u r a l l y s p e c i f i e d in the organisation of a system but rather e x i s t s as a s o c i a l category that can be activated or developed as the need arises (Manion and Bersani, 1987, p.237). Blumer (1969), Edgerton (1967) and Bogdan and Taylor (1975) support the socio-anthropological d e f i n i t i o n of mental retardation as an abstract notion which i s dependent upon s o c i e t a l values, b e l i e f s and processes. It would follow that i f sport and mental retardation are s o c i a l constructs, then any s h i f t in s o c i e t a l values would a l t e r the d e f i n i t i o n , d i r e c t i o n , and r o l e of each. The Normalisation p r i n c i p l e , d e i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s a t i o n and mainstreaming movements represent such a s h i f t . In t h i s study, the athletes displayed a keen awareness of stigma and an even keener drive to "act 104 appropriately". There was always an interplay between "appropriate behaviour" and winning or scoring. The gymnasium seemed to provide a forum for increased status a t h l e t i c a l l y and s o c i a l l y . Moving from stigmatic i d e n t i t y towards raised s o c i a l status i s viable f o r the mentally retarded through the medium of sport. Physically disabled Rick Hansen and Terry Fox are examples. Increased v i s i b i l i t y of physically and mentally disabled indiv i d u a l s on t e l e v i s i o n and other media (such as Chris Burke, actor who has downs syndrome) combined with high p r o f i l e agencies l i k e Special Olympics and i t s ' associations with the media and sports p e r s o n a l i t i e s , medals and competitions, t r a v e l and tournaments mirror current s o c i e t a l values and are status enhancing. This viewpoint represents the c o l l e c t i v e perspective of Special Olympic athletes which was e l i c i t e d through ethnographic techniques. The view that segregated sport i s status enhancing has detractors: those who advocate integration and oppose segregated events for i t s ' attention on stigmatic group i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of deviance. However, t h i s i s misleading. One cannot put an actor onstage without knowing the name of the play or having s c r i p t in hand. There must be an introduction. Himmelfarb & Evans (1974) describe a theme of l i b e r a t i o n whereby the i n d i v i d u a l i s free to embrace the deviance rather than disown i t . Within a group of ones "own" there i s freedom to retreat 'backstage' i f the performance i s less than adequate. But i t i s a stage, and within 105 t h i s segregated group i s the opportunity to 'rehearse'. The network of friends within the subculture i s important as a support and the coaches are the prompters offstage, f i l l i n g the r o l e of supportive ' s c r i p t i nterpreters'. To have to compete before learning the s k i l l s or possessing the tools i s a setup for f a i l u r e . The Special Olympic team provides the setting for acquiring the semantic knowledge necessary. I argue that only an ' e t i c ' or outside view could dogmatically pressure for absolute integration. The r e s u l t could be intense culture shock and an even greater need to implement coping strategies to disavow the perceived differences in i n t e l l e c t . But t h i s viewpoint i s an outsider perspective and not the concern of t h i s study. C o l l e c t i v i t y has strength as i t was discovered that athletes seem to f i n d an opportunity to "measure up" within the sport domain. The greater d i f f i c u l t y l i e s in "measuring up" in a s o c i a l context. Appropriate behaviour i s a goal that a l l work towards. The measure of "appropriateness" i s an elusive and d i f f i c u l t attainment and leaves the athlete vulnerable to stigmatic experiences for which coping strategies are employed while success and achievement in a t h l e t i c s i s more r e a d i l y measured and rewarded in predictable and concrete ways in the form of trophies, medals, and team membership. Stigmatic symbols over time are replaced by status symbols - " l a s t night I won, I just started but I won." According to Huizinga (1955) "Winning means showing oneself superior in the outcome of a game. Nevertheless, the evidence of t h i s s u p e r i o r i t y tends to confer upon the winner a semblance of superiority in general. In t h i s respect, he wins something more than the game as such. He has won s e l f esteem, 1 0 6 obtained honour and t h i a honour and esteem at once accrued to the benefit of the group to which the v i c t o r belongs"<p.50). Membership in the culture of mental retardation i s assured but "a chance to get into the game" (Special Olympic slogan) and obtain membership in the dominant culture can be achieved and sport i s one of the mediums. Team membership in Special Olympics seems to provide a stable, predictable, yet challenging environment for the athletes. It was important that they remain with the same sport club in t h e i r neighbourhood to be with t h e i r f r i e n d s . Special Olympic pins, trophies, jackets, badges etc. were status symbols and worn proudly. Travel and contact with media and sports p e r s o n a l i t i e s as well as c e l e b r i t i e s also provided status and was a source of bragging. An understanding of sport terminology ranged broadly as evidenced by the responses to the informal interviews in the Appendix D. Knowledge of national and international teams including sport s t a t i s t i c s was extensive in the case of some avid f l o o r hockey athletes. Competition was important but i t was also important to be a good sport (see Appendix D - p. 170). Athletes attended hockey for numerous reasons ranging from "staying o f f the s t r e e t " , which was generally an encouragement that originated from group home s t a f f "not to s i t at home", to "competition" or for "fun" (see Appendix D - p. 173). 1 0 7 There was a good understanding of penalties, strategy, competition, s o c i a l i s a t i o n , sportsmanship and d r i l l s . But there was confusion as to d e f i n i t i o n s of cool down and warmup (see Appendix D - p. 175). In some cases, the informal interviews did not produce c l a r i t y as to whether or not the athletes understood a sport term but conversation indicated that the term was understood. An example occured at the tournament banquet where a good grasp of "team" was displayed. Dan said there had been good coaching: "the team played as a team not as ind i v i d u a l s , t o t a l team s p i r i t and e f f o r t , excellent goal tending". J e f f attributed t h e i r gold medal wins to "good team s p i r i t , everybody did t h e i r jobs, everybody was cooperative, good coaching strategy. Other team played d i r t y . They were taking the body and high s t i c k i n g a l o t too. Using the s t i c k in the back - cross checking. Referee wasn't c a l l i n g penalties." Dan added "practises paid o f f , p o s i t i o n a l play how to run get your wind a l l paid o f f . " There were many p a r a l l e l s between young hockey players attitudes depicted in the ethnographic study The E?lQ^®s§i9D§ii§etion of Young Hockey Players (Vaz, 1982) and the Special Olympic athletes. One example was deliberate t r i p p i n g in a game "they didn't catch me with my s t i c k up against my boss. I did i t on purpose" a Special Olympic athlete was overheard to say. Likewise, a young hockey player in the Vaz study was questioned "Do you think i t s ok to break the rules to win the game?" "Oh, yeah" he responded (Vaz, 1982, p. 80). 1 0 8 Another p a r a l l e l related to sportsmanship. An ice hockey player was asked "Do you think hockey teaches you sportsmanship?" and he r e p l i e d "yes". We shake hands at the end of the game and say "good game" and we're just - I can't explain i t , but i t teaches me more sportsmanship" (Vaz, 1982, p.55). S i m i l a r l y , a Special Olympic athlete defined i t as "we shook t h e i r hands. We play our best." and "they don't shake hands afte r the game. I think that's a bad atti t u d e " (see Appendix D - p. 170). A study that focused on nonretarded and retarded basketball players. Context^ A b i l i t y and Performance: Comparison of Competitive A t h l e t i c s Among Mildly Retarded and Nonretarded AduAJ=§ concluded that retarded adults "...were confronted with s i m p l i f i e d r u l e s , emotional (rather than primarily strategic) coaching, lax o f f i c i a t i n g , and an altered s o c i a l context within which competition occurred" (Levine & Langness, 1983, p.537). I observed that, i n i t i a l l y , nonretarded teams were lax i n applying themselves to the game. However, once the f i r s t period was over, generally, they played seriously, because the D r i l l e r s were very good players. Scores were close. Assumptions were shattered. Another p a r a l l e l between t h i s thesis and the above mentioned study r e l a t e s to coaches. Coaches for the retarded players encouraged them to "have fun" and " i t ' s just a game" but the athletes were very serious about winning. To them, i t was not "just a game". 1 0 9 Predigt-abil i t y The structure of Special Olympics provided the athletes with p r e d i c t a b i l i t y which supported the s o c i a l network and maintenance of friendships "Hey, there's a swim meet A p r i l 23 and a dance in Coquitlam", "That's the day track s t a r t s (Grants' birthday), the 7th of A p r i l " and "On the 29th of t h i s month we get our uniforms." It i s also a stable environment for learning and p r a c t i s i n g s k i l l s . Glamour Conversations at McDonalds, on drives home, at the banquet and tournament and at the Pizza Hut or in the lobby of the community centres were f i l l e d with mention of c e l e b r i t i e s and events: "Some of us were on wide world of sports", "I've been on VU13 after I've been to Indiana", "John McKeachie came over to shake our hands." Special Olympics offered opportunities that would never otherwise be possible. These experiences were status enhancing to the athletes. Travel Many of the casual conversations revolved around the excitement of t r a v e l experiences as members of Special Olympics: "Steve and I went to Calgary", "we both played in Campbell River", "You know that number 1 guy, he went to Indiana with me." Travel broadens knowledge of the world. At one time the mentally retarded persons' view of the world was much narrower. It i s a normalising experience because t r a v e l to sport events i s similar to what professional athletes do. l i e Famous Athletes The names of famous athletes are dropped i n conversation "We beat the s t u f f i n g out of the Lions (B.C.) - Al Wilson." Mixing with sports c e l e b r i t i e s enhances status through association. Sport Terminology Sport culture i s absorbed through t e l e v i s i o n sportscasts for a l o t of athletes. One night I c a l l e d an athlete at home and I could barely hear what he was saying for the sportscast on the t e l e v i s i o n . Terry t o l d me that "Canucks made a deal with Philadelphia today. Canucks signed one team Canada player - signed Berry. He might play tonight. I hear Berrys good. Pat Quinn good. Every night a f t e r the game he s i t s down and thinks...He t a l k s to Brian." I asked who Brian was. "Assistant manager. I think Pat Quinn talked to him about the Berry guy. If he say l e t ' s sign Berry so Pat Quinn c a l l s him up and says sign that paper. Now nobody can take him. He's the property of the Vancouver Canucks." It was interesting to me how eager the athletes were to be interviewed and I wondered i f they f e l t , more or le s s , l i k e hockey s t a r s . Terry referred to himself as a "free agent". Sports S t a t i s t i c s In the lobby before a game between the Burnaby team and the Vancouver team I overheard and recorded bantering between athletes from the two teams that r e f l e c t e d knowledge of detailed f a c t s . "I'm the oldest player. I'm a veteran." (Ed) Lance responded "I've played t h i r t y years." Ed scoffed "Thirty years 111 ago was 1958. They didn't, have i t . I think Gordie Howe has the record for power play goals. Wayne Gretzky scored 92 goals in one season." Lance said "#66 i s Jo-Anns favourite player. Richard Vemieux i s #66. Richmond got eliminated from the playoffs l a s t night by Vernon. Kamloopa i s going to eliminate the New West Bruins." 112 CHAPTER IV Stigma Stigma r e f e r s to an a t t r i b u t e or at t r i b u t e s which are deeply d i s c r e d i t i n g . The mentally handicapped represent a subculture which deals with stigma d a i l y . Challenging the label 'mentally retarded' becomes complex because t h i s subculture's b e l i e f system i s grounded i n intersubjective r e a l i t y . Negative difference combined with a voice that i s discredited by the dominant culture makes meaningful communication elusive. Normalization p r i n c i p l e s create interface between mainstream culture and the mentally retarded and the r e s u l t i s that dealing with stigma becomes consuming as they struggle to appear normal. Managing the ensuing tension necessitates the development of coping strategies composed of various passing and covering techniques. Success in these e f f o r t s i s described as Phantom Normalcy, constantly subjected to r i s k of exposure. lDt®£§y^J.®£ti!£® Rea 1 i t y "Our interpretations of others interpretations of us not only can confirm but can a l t e r who we think we are, who others think us to be, and who they think they are" <Estroff, 1981, p.220). E s t r o f f describes the process of " . . . i d e n t i f i c a t i o n , i nterpretation, experiencing, knowing and changing of s e l f through interactions with others" (Estroff,1981, p.220). He discusses the s o c i a l construction of negative difference and that those whose formerly incongruent actions, meanings, experiences and c o n f l i c t s when placed i n contact with each other provides a basis f o r producing and maintaining an intersubjective r e a l i t y . Cam portrays t h i s in his statement "Dan and I and some of the other guys have been through what they're going through. We know what they're doing wrong. We can show them the r i g h t way" or Eds' assertion that "we are part of the community. We are people tryi n g to accomplish what we want, what we believe i n . Important thing i s to recognise we are here as individuals and therefore we should be treated as i n d i v i d u a l s " . Ed expresses a sense of empowerment and c o l l e c t i v i t y and Carrie adds to t h i s recognition in saying that "volunteers get to f e e l more comfortable around handicapped people. Communication l i k e that. Communication l i k e t h i s and that. Vice versa." The s i g n i f i c a n c e concerning t h i s study of athlete/coach i n t e r a c t i o n , in my mind, was clashing of c u l t u r a l expectations. If I, as a coach, react to behaviour that appears strange, immoral, unusual, than a search for the athletes' meaning concerning the behaviour i s necessary before judging or rescuing i s i n order. Although I believe i t never i s . The s i g n i f i c a n c e r e l a t e s to the coaches' r o l e . A l l behaviour makes sense. E s t r o f f <1981) discusses the intersubjective nature of r e a l i t y as r e f e r r i n g to "common sense knowledge and r e a l i t y of one person by others"<p. 128). Another domain in which there was d i s p a r i t y in assumptions was dating and marriage. An athlete t o l d a new, volunteer coach and I that she "got married before Christmas" (Linda). I congratulated her and she showed me her ring and said she wanted 114 to bring wedding pictures the following week (this she did, though neither she nor the "groom" were in wedding apparel). Later in the evening, one of the male athletes was cuddling up to her and the new, volunteer coach said "you better watch out, she's a married lady." The athlete (Bob) looked annoyed and said "I know." At the time t h i s acknowledgement served to affirm Linda's claim, i n my mind. However, further into the season, Linda's compulsive f l i r t a t i o n with the male team members continued. In conversation, I mentioned to the team manager that Linda had claimed to be married but that she l i v e d i n a group home and I hadn't r e a l i s e d that married couples l i v e d in group homes. The manager retorted "Oh, she's not married, they l i v e in separate group homes - i t ' s a fantasy of hers." I f e l t embarrassed for Linda, at having exposed the tru t h . And i t also created some measure of insecurity i n my work. Of note are the viewpoints of several ethnographers concerning t h i s phenomena. Whittaker and Olesen (1968) say that "...whether the students were presenting " r e a l i t y " f or us, whether respondents were t e l l i n g the truth - caused us l i t t l e or no anxiety. With our notions of i n t e r s u b j e c t i v i t y in f i e l d research, we conceived of the outlook of each in d i v i d u a l as characterized by "multiple r e a l i t i e s " ...the actors controlled our images of them by editing information about themselves, giving us only part of the d e t a i l s , or only part of the s i t u a t i o n as i t had occurred" (p. 41). 115 Another aspect of t h i s was the trap that Linda had unwittingly placed herself i n . As E s t r o f f (1981) describes "the product acts back on the producer" <p.219) meaning that ...persons produce meanings, r e a l i t i e s and significances that they experience as other than t h e i r own product; the product gains an existence independent of the producers' v o l i t i o n . At some point i n the conscious firming and sharing of the constructed r e a l i t y , i t becomes r e a l i n an even more massive way and i t can no longer be changed r e a d i l y " (p. 219). As time went on, Linda's compulsive f l i r t a t i o n forced her to abandon her "married lady" facade for when George (the volunteer coach) said "you better watch out, she's a married lady", i t indicated that the coaches were taking her seriously. She dropped the facade when she became aware that we were aware that i t was a facade. She completely stopped mentioning her "marriage" and became known as the "playmaker" by male members of the team. Her i d e n t i t y changed as members f r e e l y related to her in ways they did not with other female members of the team. Of course, the team managers comment to me, which Linda had overheard, blew Lindas' cover and may also have influenced her conversion. This i s what Goffman r e f e r s to as passing which w i l l be discussed i n more d e t a i l l a t e r . l i f e D e a l i n g w i t h Stigma The Interactioniat paradigm suggests that "meaning i s derived from and produced through interpersonal communication and exchange" Blumer, (1969) i n Es t r o f f (1981, p.216). According to Berger and Luckman (1967) ...objects and experiences possess few absolute, inherent q u a l i t i e s , but are endowed with q u a l i t i e s and signi f i c a n c e through persons encounters with them. These encounters are interpreted and understood by persons on the basis of t h e i r commonsense knowledge, which has been established, confirmed and altered through t h e i r interaction with other persons who have had si m i l a r encounters and made similar interpretations. Meanings and sig n i f i c a n c e are decided upon and learned by negotiating with others. A minimum of common knowledge and shared meanings i s ess e n t i a l to communicate (Es t r o f f , 1981, p.217). Est r o f f (1981) elaborates: "...shared knowledge and meaning at a t a c i t everyday, commonsense l e v e l i s not only the foundation for i n t e r a c t i o n , but i t i s also generated, maintained and altered by i n t e r a c t i o n " (p.217). When I began my fieldwork with the f l o o r hockey team, the most notable experience was in not knowing how to communicate with the team members: i n not knowing how to behave or interpret 117 t h e i r behaviour. It was l i k e tuning a t e l e v i s i o n , watching the l i n e s r o l l i n g rapidly down the screen and gradually slowing u n t i l the picture i s cl e a r , but I never did get the picture completely free of the r o l l i n g l i n e s : they only slowed enough to allow me glimpses of the performance. The very awareness of my discomfort with communication suggested an awareness of 'difference'. Goffman (1963) c l a r i f i e s t h i s experience: When normals and stigmatized do i n fact enter one another's immediate presence, e s p e c i a l l y when they there attempt to sustain a j o i n t conversational encounter, there occurs one of the primal scenes of sociology; f o r , in many cases, these moments w i l l be the ones when the causes and e f f e c t s of stigma must be d i r e c t l y confronted by both sides. The stigmatized in d i v i d u a l may f i n d that he f e e l s unsure of how we normals w i l l i d e n t i f y him and receive him (p. 13). My f i r s t encounters consisted of a few athletes encroaching intensely on my personal boundaries - some touching me, f l i r t i n g , staring f o r uncomfortable lengths of time or leaning up against my body. Others were suspicious and kept distance between us, backing away i f I made an approach at conversation, averting t h e i r eyes i f I caught them watching me. I made many mistakes and was shocked at how transparent my stereotyped perceptions were and how quickly I made assumptions. Some of the athletes were normal looking and I discovered that I made u n r e a l i s t i c demands on them (see Appendix A, Sam p. 154). Others "looked" more n a handicapped and I underestimated t h e i r a b i l i t i e s ( see Appendix A, Ed p. 156). I was judging mental a b i l i t y on physical appearance and when I r e a l i s e d t h i s , I began to wonder how many times t h i s happened to the athletes and what t h i s was l i k e for them. I f e l t f l u s t e r e d and unsure of myself and of course lacked awareness that these relationships would change over time as we grew to "know" each other. My impression was " t h i s i s the way i t i s " without notions of staging performances or stigma management techniques. Gradually, I became aware of some of my assumptions, possibly stemming from the dominant culture. Some examples following w i l l i l l u s t r a t e t h i s with respect to dating and employment. The subculture of mental retardation appeared to work under a d i f f e r e n t set of assumptions largely rooted in tension management strategies. The athletes did not seem to f e e l comfortable i n making mistakes, learning through " t r i a l and err o r " as i t were. Di r e c t l y checking out perceptions would require a measure of s e l f esteem and r i s k of r i d i c u l e or i n v a l i d a t i o n . Rather, the strategies employed were designed to avoid t h i s . When someone said "Cathy got f i r e d from working at the Red Cross", I imposed my interpretations regarding "being f i r e d " and thought about wrongdoings that might be connected with dismissal. The athletes, too, understood the term in t h i s way as i s i l l u s t r a t e d i n the quote "I had to f i r e three guys t h i s week because they were drinking and sloughing o f f behind my back" (Tom). I came to learn that "being f i r e d " i s an experience shared by many athletes and t h e i r friends because there were no 119 other explanations available, apparently, to account for the loss of a job, such as being l a i d o f f . But i t s ' meaning was apparently related to vocational trends and was explained by the team manager, an athletes' mother, as such: "places l i k e McDonalds only hire athletes for a short period of time, although there i s big PR around i t . The kids think they are f i r e d . The kids come to me and t e l l me that they don't know what they did." The difference between my experience of being l e t go on the job and the athletes might be i n challenging or questioning the reasons for being l e t go. Instead, the athletes l e f t the job assuming they were f i r e d , and to be f i r e d meant some wrongdoing had been committed as L i s a indicated "Judy got f i r e d cause she wouldn't work at the Red Cross" which they f e l t unable or were unwilling to check out. It also says something about the dominant cultures lack of taking the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y to c l e a r l y communicate what was going on which may, as i l l u s t r a t e d by my misperceptions, be a r e s u l t of f a u l t y assumptions. Coping Strategies How does a retarded person respond to that "torn up" feeling? What kind of defense mechanisms do retarded people develop? Most retarded people must rel y on very simple psychological t a c t i c s or, as S t e r n l i c h t suggests i n Evans (1983, p.125) the more primitive defense mechanisms such as repression, regression, f i x a t i o n , denial, undoing and i s o l a t i o n . i £ 0 Excerpt from Fieldnotes February 22, 1988: Carrie asked me to help her get her earrings o f f . Her ears were bleeding. She said she was depressed and asked me to come into the equipment room. She was mostly incoherent but agitated, "learning to deal with i t in a proper way" (her anger). "If I get down I f e e l sick - f e e l my forehead. I get down r i g h t here (she pressed her abdomen) I'm churned up inside." She mentioned a worker in the group home. "When she's okay, she's okay but watch out when she's not." Carrie did not play at a l l tonight which was completely unusual. Passing and Covering According to Goffman (1963) i n Dudley (1983), passing i s the a b i l i t y to sometimes "...pass as someone with a less stigmatic i d e n t i t y or as a normal person" (p.73), while "...covering could be viewed as a special form of passing in si t u a t i o n s where the person's id e n t i t y i s not known, as willingness to admit to the possession of a stigmatic a t t r i b u t e does not necessarily mean openly volunteering t h i s information" (p.SO). One of the most common ways of denying mental handicap i s to try to "pass" as normal. There are many ways of passing, some of the most common methods are: concealing associations, mastering f a c t s , asking questions, u n r e a l i s t i c domestic and occupational aspirations, and excessive reserve. l£i Concealing Associations Goffman (1963) describes a person who wished to conceal his d i s a b i l i t y as one who w i l l notice d i s a b i l i t y revealing mannerism in another person. "Moreover, he i s l i k e l y to resent those mannerisms that advertise the fac t of d i s a b i l i t y , f or in wishing to conceal his d i s a b i l i t y he wishes others to conceal t h e i r s " (P.86). Kevin c r i t i c i z e d others on a regular basis " p u l l up your pants" "don't eat in here. you're not supposed to eat in here." During games with normal players or spectators, a group of players drew attention to Sams behaviour which they never did during practises "Sam, put a l i d on i t . " Mastering Facts Evans <1983> says "...that some try to master f a c t s to make themselves sound precocious such as memorization of sports s t a t i s t i c s or the dates of h i s t o r i c a l or personal events" (p.125). Ed, during warmup, commented to no one i n pa r t i c u l a r "Buddy Holly crash. They found a l l his s t u f f - watch with i n i t i a l s on i t i n t a c t " I asked him how he knew and he said "I heard i t eight years ago" and during a conversation with members of the Burnaby team in the lobby of the Recreation centre "Wayne Gretzky scored 92 goals in one season." Grant was often r e c i t i n g numbers and d e t a i l s completely out of context "Oh, what a great meal they catered to us at the bowling banquet. Roast beef, mashed potatoes. They are going to have the suspenders after the banquet and they are going to have 134 athletes for the banquet. The seating capacity i s for 200" (March 21). 122 Asking Questions Another method was to ask questions compulsively to draw attention away from t h e i r handicap. "In being on the asking rather than answering end of an i n t e r a c t i o n , they did not have to display what they knew or did not know" (Evans, 1983, p. 126). Grant was notorious for asking questions such as "Do we have enough xerox copies?", "Have you got the schedule for the tournament?" But when I t r i e d to interview him, he was very uncomfortable and just looked at me i n s i l e n c e . It was possible that the coaches inadvertedly c u l t i v a t e d t h i s quality by giving him jobs to do such as d i s t r i b u t i n g forms to the athletes. U n r e a l i s t i c Domestic and Occupational Aspirations Another predominant passing mode was apparent in u n r e a l i s t i c domestic and occupational aspirations. Tom t o l d me that he was the boss at Lumberland and had to " f i r e three guys." Jordan aspired to an executive position with Special Olympics. Excessive Reserve Excessive reserve provides a defense that many u t i l i z e : They avoid a l l behaviour that might upset others or cause them to laugh. Some become very s k i t t i s h , going to great, sometimes absurd lengths to avoid contact with normal people.... Some retarded people play possum, or something else. Retarded persons may adopt the passive s t y l e for a number of reasons. For some, i t i s a mask that covers aggression. For others i t i s a 123 reaction to f e e l i n g s that i t i s f u t i l e for them to try to control t h e i r environments (Evans, 1983, p. 128). Jess, Jack, A l , Carol and to an extent many others i n varying degrees exhibited t h i s tendency. It was apparent that t h i s was a coping strategy because they became more open and relaxed as the season progressed, and they were animated in other settings. Others, l i k e Carrie, Carol, Grant manifested the confrontation with tasks that they were i l l equipped i n t e l l e c t u a l l y to handle by becoming anxious and f e a r f u l . Carrie expressed anxiety as above; Linda said "I thought he was going to hurt me. And I was hurt inside myself." Carol said " f e e l my stomach", I did, and I could f e e l her heart racing. There were three athletes who were non verbal for physiological reasons. As i t turned out, and t h i s could only have been discovered over an extended period of time, a fourth person whom I had c l a s s i f i e d as nonverbal because I had never seen her speak to anyone, approached me at the end of the season with a question "how do you explain what a seizure i s ? " It turned out that she was very a r t i c u l a t e but "Often they create d i f f i c u l t i e s for him (outsider) as "defenses", to keep him at a distance or at least to s t a l l him off while he i s considered and examined more c l o s e l y " (Wagner, 1981, p. 5). 124 Furthermore, Biklen and Moaeleya' a r t i c l e <1988> described how: . . . i n s t i t u t i o n a l s t a f f assert(ed) that (a) man had no language, although his friends i n the group home in s i s t e d and the researcher observed that he spoke and communicated just f i n e . The informant did not experience the setting of the tes t as comfortable enough to r i s k t a l k i n g , so he never did (p. 160). A s i m i l a r experience occurred when I was presenting a coaching c l i n i c i n Port Alberni years ago at the inception of Special Olympics i n B.C. The athletes were dead s i l e n t in the gymnasium as they t r i e d out the game of f l o o r hockey. This contrasted with what i s t y p i c a l l y a rowdy, noisy sport. The former coach of the Port Alberni team had since moved to Vancouver and i s a regional coordinator, often a s s i s t i n g with the Vancouver team. I mentioned my impressions to her i n that the athletes seemed so competent and she noted "they're r e a l l y getting the concept of the game." One way to make sense of t h i s behaviour was to at t r i b u t e the silence to lack of experience. This brought to mind Evans <1983> quote "conversational repertoires of the mentally retarded are limited not by the handicap but by the l i m i t of experiences"(p. 122). Adding to t h i s i s a comment by one of the parents of the nonverbal athletes when I commented on how much he had improved over the season "well, they said he would never be able to take the bus alone but he does that now, no problem." Gender Awareness o£ gender ro l e s and attitudes were displayed by the athletes where in order to pass as normal female athletes talked openly about the topic but male athletes did not. Cathy t o l d me that Jack was her fiance and Gary her ex-fiance "but he used to beat me up. He asked me to marry him July 2." The male athletes rarely mentioned marriage or dating with the exception of Keith who confided that his g i r l friend's name was Carrie and he had met her at church; he tended to be quite f l i r t a t i o u s and macho. When he f i r s t spied a new female volunteer he squealed "woo woo"! Some male members displayed interest in the opposite sex nonverbally by putting t h e i r arms around women or standing too close. Later, in the season, I heard that Jess was engaged although he never mentioned a g i r l f r i e n d or appeared interested in women in the same way that Terry never talked about dating yet showed up with a g i r l f r i e n d at the tournament banquet. When I pointed out to him that "I never knew you had a g i r l f r i e n d " , he re p l i e d "You got to concentrate on the game." Bob brought his g i r l f r i e n d Shelley along to a practise and wanted to know i f she could j o i n . But he proceeded to spend the evening with his arm around Linda. Both Henshel <1972) and Edgerton <19S7) suggested that t h e i r subjects would marry anyone as did Heshusius (1981) for "Just to have one <a g i r l f r i e n d or boyfriend) was of great importance"(p.97) in order to gain membership into the dominant culture. 1 c.'S Seizures Athletes look to coaches as 'normalcy' guides into the dominant culture for coping strategies in r e l a t i o n to t h e i r stigma. One of the a f f l i c t i o n s commonly experienced i s seizure. One athlete suffered seizures during the f i n a l tournament and another athlete sought out advice on how to manage information concerning her seizures. This topic i s common and acceptable within the environment of Special Olympics as: Goffman (1963) describes back places where: ... persons of the i n d i v i d u a l ' s kind stand exposed and f i n d they need not try to conceal t h e i r stigma, nor be overly concerned with cooperatively t r y i n g to disattend i t . Here the individual w i l l be able to be at ease among his fellows (p. 81). Carol approached me with the question " i f I asked you a question would you t e l l me? How do I t e l l people what a seizure is? I mean I had a seizure yesterday. How do you t e l l people what i t is? I t ' s hard to explain." I suggested we ask Barb <the manager) as I did not know what to t e l l Carol. Barb t o l d her " T e l l them i t ' s l i k e you're daydreaming." She talked about her son Greg's massive seizures and Ed, who was seated beside us, rocking back and f o r t h on the bench, retorted "I don't know why, he never does anything" which puzzled me but may not to someone versed i n the causes of seizures. Carol said "Well, when I have a seizure, I don't know what I'm saying and I say weird things." Carol f e l t comfortable t a l k i n g to us about her problem although 1£7 i t was apparent that ahe did not f e e l the aame way about other outsiders. The gymnasium was a safe place to report her anxiety and embarrassment about having public seizures. S i m i l a r l y , Bob had two seizures during the tournament and was thus banned from playing any further for his own safety. He admitted that he had forgotten to take his p i l l s and was distraught and behaved v i o l e n t l y when t o l d that he couldn't continue to play. The team members s i l e n t l y watched him seizure twice and his angry reaction at having been benched. The rule concerning seizures was s p e c i f i c to play in Special Olympics and something that was understood and e a s i l y related to within team members and coaches. Phantom Normalcy According to Goffman (1963), Phantom Normalcy i s achieved when a retarded person successfully passes as normal. "There are degrees of phantom normalcy, and each has i t s r i s k s . The moderately successful passer fo o l s some of the people some of the time or i s led to believe he does" (p. 126-127). Linda exemplified t h i s i n her " r o l e " as a married woman (see p. 94). She succeeded for a long period of time because she employed a l l the c u l t u r a l symbols such as a r i n g , wedding photo and dates as proof of her marital status. She was consistent in her verbalization of her marital status but not her behaviour as regarding dominant c u l t u r a l rules such as f i d e l i t y and commitment. It was t h i s that gave her away. Another similar example i s noted. One of the f i r s t nights of the season, I noticed a g i r l s i t t i n g on a bench with a notebook. She said her name was Linda and she was doing her math homework. Later, I discovered that Linda was i n her f o r t i e s and did not go to school. One athlete did not scheme to pass as normal but responded spontaneously to a challenge of his sport c u l t u r a l knowledge. Brian i s a Special Olympic athlete from another team who was v i s i t i n g the Vancouver team one practise. I overheard an exchange between himself and a member of the Super Valu team during a break at the game. The Super Valu member asked Brian "Do you play basketball?" Brian said "yes." The Super Valu player asked "what position?" Brian said "Second p o s i t i o n . " The Super Valu player said "pardon?" Brian looked uncomfortable and repeated "second p o s i t i o n . " The Super Valu player said "pardon?" Brian looked even more uncomfortable and repeated "second p o s i t i o n " blushing. The degree of d i s t r e s s was apparent in his face. Both Linda and Brian were exposed in t h e i r passing attempts. Language There were phenomena associated with language in the occurrence of speech errors connected to stigma and coping strategies which on a larger scope grew out of s o c i a l i s a t i o n within the broader society (primary s o c i a l i s a t i o n ) . Besides speech errors which often led to confusion "I went to violence school", I was i n i t i a t e d into the mechanism of what Goffman (1963) r e f e r s to as "phantom normalcy" which taught me to reduce 129 l i t e r a l interpretations of what was said (time took care of t h i s problem). Sometimes i t was obvious "I had to f i r e a couple of guys" (the chances of t h i s athlete being a supervisor are small) and other times i t was not "I got married before Christmas" ( i t was plausible that any of the athletes could have been married). And, of course, I s t i l l had trouble comprehending the speech of nine of the athletes that came consistently to pra c t i s e . There were athletes who talked but made no sense to me, either because they had a condition such as autism i n which they withdrew p e r i o d i c a l l y and ca r r i e d on monologues that were disconnected "nuisance, snow, workshop." or did not connect to my l i n e of questioning "What do you think about your team?" " I t ' s good" "why?" "I l i k e Burnaby best" and I asked "What position do you play?" "I l i k e Burnaby." After t h i s exchange, I asked Barb, the equipment manager, why Al focused on Burnaby and she provided me insight into the context of his answers "Because his friends were ta l k i n g about the game against Burnaby l a s t night. They were talk i n g about Burnaby and that Jordan was there. He wasn't at the game l a s t night and he has never been to Burnaby." Another example of speech that appeared out of context, i n i t i a l l y , was during a warm up when we were doing side stretches. It was s i l e n t in the gymnasium and Ed blurted out "Buddy Holly crash. They found a l l his s t u f f - watch with i n i t i a l s on i t i n t a c t . " I was standing next to him and asked how he knew t h i s and he r e p l i e d "I heard i t eight years ago." Later, I remembered that at the beginning of the practise, Chris, the coach, had asked everyone to make sure they took o f f t h e i r 138 watches and jewelry. I did not know how to make sense of t h i s , I wondered i f Ed's comment regarding Buddy Holly's watch was related to Chris's advice. Evans (1983) suggests that, as a defense mechanism, some "...devoted themselves to mastery of s t a t i s t i c s or f a c t s that would make them sound precocious i . e . the memorization of sports s t a t i s t i c s or the dates of h i s t o r i c a l or personal events" (p. 126). In the lobby, one night, I was s i t t i n g on a bench l i s t e n i n g to a verbal exchange between members of the Burnaby team and the Vancouver team, Ed said "I'm the oldest player. I'm a veteran." Lance (Burnaby player) countered with "I've played t h i r t y years." Ed retorted i n s t a n t l y "Thirty years ago was 1958. They didn't have i t . I think Gordie Howe has the record for power play goals. Wayne Gretzky scored 92 goals in one season." Ten members of the team were d i f f i c u l t to comprehend because of i n a r t i c u l a t i o n or incomprehension and t h i s represented more than a t h i r d of the team. Exacerbating the problem was that I focused deliberately on speech rather than nonverbal behaviour, i n i t i a l l y , because of the model I was operating under and secondly, because i t was impossible to check out or make sense out of observations with someone who I had to ask to repeat themselves over and over. Occasionally I had help from other athletes i n interpreting nonverbal behaviour but i t was a problem within t h i s study. One athlete approached me imitating a rabbit with hia hands on his head, hopping and laughing. He always did i t , and only to me, and I never knew what i t meant. Jason, the youngest on the team, was almost nonverbal and behaved in a very 131 coy and cute way. He would a i d l e up to me aay " h e l l o " , knock on my head and giggle. He often hugged the coaches and they allowed him to do t h i s which I thought was inappropriate. During games, he would play but would slowly back o f f the f l o o r towards the wall, only to be gently pushed back on. By the end of the season, he was staying on the f l o o r and making attempts to h i t the r i n g . Simon, was also nonverbal and his behaviour was extremely e r r a t i c . He, occasionally had to be taken o f f the f l o o r for h i t t i n g other players. At the same time, he would be smiling and laughing. Goffman describes the "in-group deviant" wearing a happy and acquiescent mask to cover a chronic sense of i n f e r i o r i t y . There were at least four people who behaved in t h i s manner although they would never acknowledge f e e l i n g s of i n f e r i o r i t y and I do not know how one would e l i c i t information that would confirm that notion. CHAPTER V Conclusions Athlete/Coach Interactions - "My^hs"understandings In the early days of science, i t was believed that the truth lay a l l around us...was there for the taking...waiting, l i k e a crop of corn, only to be harvested and gathered i n . The truth would make i t s e l f known to us i f only we would observe nature with that wide-eyed and innocent perceptivenesa that mankind i s thought to have possessed in those Arcadian days before the F a l l . . . before our senses became dulled by prejudice and s i n . Thus the truth i s there for the taking only i f we can part the v e i l of prejudice and preconception and observe things as they r e a l l y are...(Medawar, 1979) in (Hammersley & Atkinson, 1983, p.12). "Myths" understandings emerged gradually. But f i r s t had to come an awareness that myths existed. The l i t e r a l interpretation of what lay before the researcher preceded t h i s . Viewing mental retardation as a s o c i a l construct shatters one myth, namely that i t i s a b i o l o g i c a l property bestowed upon a person at b i r t h . If mental retardation i s perceived i n a c u l t u r a l sense, where culture, by d e f i n i t i o n , i s "...the body of learned b e l i e f s , t r a d i t i o n s , and guides for behavior that are shared among members of any human society," where "...behavior 133 that the members have acquired by observation, by imitation, or by i n s t r u c t i o n at the hands of other members of that group" (Barrett, 1984, p.54) then the l i m i t a t i o n s imposed on those labe l l e d mentally retarded do not ar i s e from retardation, rather from the dominant cultures perception i t s e l f . Another myth predominating i s that the mentally retarded cannot represent themselves. The purpose of the study was to e l i c i t the athletes viewpoint, because r a r e l y was t h i s undertaken. Rather, the voice of the parent or o f f i c i a l was heard. However, i n spite of t h i s intention, I made assumptions regarding who could a r t i c u l a t e t h e i r viewpoints which were largely based on appearance and behaviour and resulted in inadequate representation of the team. Myths have been generated by recreation professionals who fear misapplication of the normalization p r i n c i p l e . Reverse integration and segregated sport i s seen to be damaging i n that a (50/50 r a t i o i s unlike the r a t i o in society and i s therefore u n r e a l i s t i c f or both disabled and nondisabled i n d i v i d u a l s ) . The athletes themselves looked to the coaches as secondary s o c i a l i s a t i o n agents who helped them "how do I explain a seizure?" interpret and model the dominant culture values and behaviour in a neutral environment. 134 Mentally retarded people do not learn. This myth was disproved many times in the study. Improvements i n performance, questions regarding s o c i a l customs of dating and work, aspirations towards work and competitive goals a l l indicated a b i l i t y to learn. "I just started but already I won" a r t i c u l a t e s the awareness and stimulation of improvement and success. The myth that mentally retarded people are not aware of the stigma attached to being mentally retarded i s disproved by the elaborate coping strategies employed to a l l a y the pain r e s u l t i n g from being treated as i n f e r i o r . The myth that athletes are not c r i t i c a l or a n a l y t i c a l about t h e i r experiences or the people surrounding them was contradicted by the exposure to front and back stage performances. What appeared to be true in one setting was f a l s e in a d i f f e r e n t s e t t i n g , for example, the athletes did not c r i t i c i z e or challenge coaches or gossip i n the gymnasium. But i n McDonalds, rapid f i r e analysis of plays, strategies and team mates was observed. I chose the topic , athlete/coach i n t e r a c t i o n : the athletes perspective because I suspected that the coaches would make assumptions, based on th e i r own sport s o c i a l i s a t i o n , as to what the athletes comprehended. This proved to be true; there were disjunctures. I did not expect to catch myself in t h i s net, although, l o g i c a l l y , as a member of the dominant culture I, too, would make sim i l a r assumptions. Ethnocentricity: "the tendency to evaluate other c u l t u r a l practises from the vantage point of one's own culture" (Barrett, 1984, p.8) defines t h i s experience thereby illuminating the o r i g i n of c u l t u r a l myths. 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Z e t l i n , A. G., & Murtaugh, M. (1988). Friendship Patterns of Mildly Learning Handicapped and Nonhandicapped High School Students. American Journal on Mental Retardation, 92 (5), 447-454. APPENDIX A The Actors B.C. Special Olympic athletes have varying backgrounds. Some have been i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s e d at one point in t h e i r l i v e s and others have never been. Some have been integrated into normal schools while others have never been to school. Some l i v e at home with t h e i r parents, others in group homes, s t i l l others alone or with f r i e n d s . They are young, old; male, female; employed and unemployed; married and unmarried. But they a l l have two elements in common. One i s t h e i r mental handicap and and another i s t h e i r membership in B.C.S.O. (a non p r o f i t organisation providing sport for the mentally handicapped) It i s these commonalities that bind them together as a subculture. The D r i l l e r s <B Team) DAN Is the team captain. He was born in 1959 and went to school at Oakridge. He looks perfectly normal and has a high l e v e l of s k i l l i n hockey. He has, since l a s t season, become responsible fo r leading his team in warmups which he designs: has the team form a c i r c l e around him and does: shoulder r o l l s , side bends, stretching ham st r i n g s , situps, pushups, up and down on toes stretching c a l f muscles, leg stretches to the side, running from side to side, jogging around the gymn and d r i l l s which he also develops, for example, two sides are formed and Dan stands in front moving his arms forward, sideways etc. requiring the person on each side to move in the d i r e c t i o n he indicates as quickly as 143 possible. Dan's father was a former soccer star in England. He s t i l l l i v e s with his parents and works in a greenhouse. He i s capable of i n i t i a t i n g and leading his team mates, of tal k i n g to them diplomatically regarding t h e i r behaviour or misbehaviour; of maintaining consistent stable behaviour. Dan plays center. JACK Was born i n 1961 and went to school at Oakridge. He l i v e s with his parents and works at Fraser Workshop. He i s very d i f f i c u l t to understand when he speaks. He looks unresponsive and maintains a bored or detached look, although one time he surprised me when I put my hand on hia shoulder and patted i t and said "good going. Jack" and he impulsively hugged me. He occasionally loses h i s temper. He has apparently been engaged and f l i r t s with Linda. Jack i s thin and very quick on the f l o o r , very motivated to score when he plays, however, often he just s i t s on the s i d e l i n e s . His parents came to the sportsfest along with his brother, s i s t e r i n law and t h e i r children. Jack plays wing. He c a l l s me "my coach" which makes me f e e l good. GARY Was born i n 1962 and went to Kits High. He l i v e s with his parents and works at Fraser Workshop. He i s a t t r a c t i v e and very expressive emotionally. He has a t e r r i b l e temper and according to a female spectator known as Cathy (who says they were engaged,) he beat her up causing her to break o f f the engagement. He i s also known to do the notorious Tiger Dance but I can't describe i t because the head coach, Chris, wouldn't l e t him 144 demonstrate i t saying "no, i t ' s gross, I don't l i k e i t . He goes loony." He i s a good player usually playing wing. His father often comes out to watch. JESS Was born i n 1964 and went to Oakridge. He l i v e s in his own apartment and i s going to school to learn e l e c t r o n i c s . He looks normal but, l i k e Jack, wears a detached suspicious look - poker face. He i s known for his nickname obsession i . e . he c a l l s various team mates the terminator, the gas chamber, Mi3s Piggy and uses c l i c h e s i . e . "what was that going past me - a UFO?" (ref e r r i n g to a hockey r i n g ) . He has a dry sense of humour and t h i s was apparent when he sat a long time on the bench and said "I'm already r u s t i n g . " This was the only reference of any athlete nearing a complaint to lack of f l o o r time. He i s very determined and usually f i x e s on getting a "hat t r i c k " or beating "my previous record." He i s very supportive of his fellow players and wears a hockey sweat s h i r t to practise. He kept his distance from me for a long time, eventually relaxing and chatting. He usually plays centre. STEVE Was born i n 1953 and went to West Point Grey sp e c i a l c l a s s . He l i v e s at home and works in regular industry. His mother recently died. He i s a huge red headed bearded fellow who wears thick glasses and has a d i f f i c u l t time expressing himself verbally. When he does, he sometimes s t u t t e r s . He drives his own truck, which he bought with his own money, and he i s very 145 wary of people bumming rides from him. He w i l l not go a yard out of his way to drive someone. He was very f r i e n d l y to me r i g h t from the s t a r t and would usually approach me by saying "Hi" and standing r i g h t up to me, chest to chest, in an unbearably uncomfortable proximity < with Steve, t h i s was just genuine f r i e n d l i n e s s ) . He i s very popular and i s an excellent goal tender. Although I f e l t he could be quite coy and mentioned dancing "three f a s t ones and one slow one" with a g i r l at the Port Alberni tournament, he showed extreme annoyance and discomfort around Linda's f l i r t i n g . CARRIE Was born i n 1967 and went to Oakridge. She i s in the semi- independent l i v i n g program, i n an apartment of her own with a house manager to provide support, but was previously in a group home and didn't seem happy "when she's okay, she's okay (worker in home) but watch out when she's not.." She i s a t t r a c t i v e , a t h l e t i c a l l y g i f t e d and quick and she expresses her emotions often and i n a dramatic way. But she has problems with her temper and she i s constantly checking out as to whether or not her behaviour i s appropriate. " I f you see me fr u s t r a t e d , say 'don't be f r u s t r a t e d ' " or "Am I handling myself better even though I'm pissed o f f ? " Carrie i s highly competitive and becomes very tense during games. She loves to win but talk s at length about good sportsmanship. She sought out my advice on a number of issues from colouring her hair to camera care and asked me to take o f f and hold her pierced earrings, take pictures of her "make sure you get a picture of me r e a l l y moving" and l i s t e n to 146 her when she was upset "I'm churned up inside". She was interested romantically in George, the volunteer coach from UBC. She was not interested i n any of the mentally handicapped guys. She appeared to be very high strung. She was chosen to compete i n the B.C. games and was very excited about that. She plays wing . LISA Was born i n 1965 and went to Oakridge. She l i v e s at home. She i s thinking about moving to a group home "I might move to a group home but I don't want to be too far away from my parents. My mom says whenever I'm ready. I could go to a grouphome in Burnaby but that's too fa r from my fr i e n d s . I got to get a job before I move to a group home." Later in the year she got a job at Heroes. Lisa looks handicapped, speaks in a very slow drawl, her posture i s hunched and she looks sideways, not d i r e c t l y at the person she i s speaking to (she also wears glasses). Cam i s her boyfriend but she wants to be able to play the f i e l d "we get to dance with whoever we want." She has interesting things to say about herself "Let me win and a l l that...I always say that before I play" and has a wide variety of in t e r e s t s , tennis, swimming. She indicates that she might have a r e l i g i o u s background " i f God had wanted you to have red hair he'd have given you red hai r " (to me) and uses the phone to stay in touch with friends. Her position i s Cams defense partner. 147 CAM Was born in 1954 and went, to Vancouver Tech. He l i v e s in a private apartment in his parents home and worked at Super Valu but aft e r the l o c a l store closed, he got a job at McDonalds which he l i k e s as much as the one at Super Valu. Cam i s known as Pokey after Eldon (Pokey) Reddick of the Winnipeg Jets and he i s very f r i e n d l y and sweet. He i s t a l l and overweight and wears glasses. He gives the appearance of being shy and often asks for help in doing the r i g h t thing such as asking me to check over a note to Lisa or asking Pam to give him Lisas phone number. But he appears to have insight into what his problem i s "they're building up my confidence" he said about his parents. He has a l o t of empathy for fellow players "we were helping the weaker group...Dan and I and some of the other guys have been through what they're going through. We know what they're doing wrong. We can show them the r i g h t way." Cam i s very proud of the association he has had with famous people through Special Olympics and t a l k s about t h i s a l o t "Next monday, I ' l l bring my medallion and picture of me and Doug M i l l e r . He's the CKVU weatherman" and "I was on the radio" and "Some of us were on wide world of sports." Cam never displays anything but gentlemanly behaviour and has great respect from his team mates. He i s always happy to go f o r coffee and i s my main informant, has most peoples phone numbers and has been around a long time. He plays defense and has scored two goals t h i s season. 148 SCOTT Was born i n 1961 and went, to Oakridge. He l i v e s at home and has a job. Scott i s over six feet t a l l but the most gentle person on the team. He i s regularly provoked by Simon and refuses to f i g h t "I don't want to f i g h t . What should I do?" i s the request he made to Chris and Barb. He, i t was la t e r discovered, was being pressured by Tom to give him money and the account i s , that he stayed away from hockey because he was a f r a i d of Tom. Scott i s a slow player mostly due to his bulk but i s a good defenseman and seems to follow the game well. We never r e a l l y interacted. JEFF Was born in 1953 and went to Oakridge. He l i v e s at home and works for a company. J e f f i s a good looking man and i s very good natured and gentle. He i s one of the gang consisting of Terry, Jess, Gary, Dan and Jack. He i s a good player and usually positions as wing. He i s a r t i c u l a t e but rarely spoke. He talked more at the banquet during the tournament about his opinion regarding the success of the team. He seemed to enjoy and want to analyse the performance of the team at the tournament. His parents came to watch him play at the tournament. The Blasters iC Team). TERRY Was born in 1963 and went to Lord Byng. He l i v e s at home and works at Eraser Workshop and also does j a n i t o r i a l duties at UBC. Terry i s goal tender for the C team and i s a very hard i 4 9 working player. He i s devoted to aporta and when I aaked him i f why he never talked about hia g i r l f r i e n d , he said "got to concentrate on the game." Terry loves to use sport jargon. He ta l k s about himself as having been "a free agent" and about the "Canucks (having) made a deal with Philadelphia today...I think Pat Quinn talked to him about the Berry guy. If he say l e t s sign Berry so Pat Quinn c a l l s him up and says sign that paper. Now nobody can take him. He's the property of the Vancouver Canucks." Terry i s popular with everyone and i s very shrewd at manipulating rides -- Steve stays a mile away from him but I found myself somehow driving "j u s t a l i t t l e way" a l l the way down East Hastings. He also managed to sneak his g i r l f r i e n d into the tournament banquet, he i s a r e a l wheeler and dealer. Terry i s good at psyching up the team. KEVIN Was born in 1954 and l i v e s i n Arlington group home. He works at Pandora/Varco. Kevin has Downs Syndrome, i s small and wears thick glasses. He i s very serious and concerned about following rules as he admonished Carol a few times "You are not supposed to eat in the gymn." He has a l o t of opinions and considers Pat the boss. He i s a good player but i s d i f f i c u l t to understand. His good f r i e n d i s Al with whom he l i v e s and works. During the tournament Kevin t o l d me he would bring pictures of his family. He spoke much more to me in t h i s s e t t i n g than the practises and games. 158 AL Was born in 1955 and l i v e a in the Arlington group home. He works at Pandora/Varco. A l , appearance wise, i s one of the most disabled of the group. He wears thick glasses, limps heavily and, l i k e Cathy, looks sideways at the person he i s speaking to ( i f the person i s not f a m i l i a r to him). He also i s very d i f f i c u l t to understand and tends to repeat what he has immediately experienced. For example, when I was interviewing him, he responded to a l l my questions with some reference to Burnaby. I asked Barb why that would be so and she said "Because his friends were tal k i n g about the game against Burnaby l a s t night. They were tal k i n g about Burnaby and that Jordan was there. He wasn't at the game l a s t night and he has never been to Burnaby." A l , of a l l the athletes seems the most anxious to be associated with anyone of higher functioning. He often says "Jordan, he's my f r i e n d " or "Len, he's my f r i e n d . " He i s very chatty with the mentally handicapped and loves Chris, the head coach, but i s very r e t i c e n t with unfamiliar normal people. LEE Was born i n 1962 and went to Oakridge. He works at Pandora/Varco and l i v e s at Arlington Group home. Lee has Downs Syndrome and i s very t h i n . He i s nonverbal. Lee always wears a worn out bowling badge on his T s h i r t and uses hand signals at times. He i s an excellent player. Although a l l seemed to l i k e him, he did not mix much. He understood the d r i l l s and followed them well and was a g i l e and f l e x i b l e . 151 JASON Was born in 1970 and i a a student at John Oliver high school. He has l i v e d with his foster parents since he was two. He i s in a Trainable c l a s s but takes P.E. from a regular physical education teacher and plays with "the guys" in soccer. He i s c l a s s i f i e d as moderately handicapped according to his mother but he appears very low functioning. He giggles a l o t and generally stands on the f l o o r watching and giggling at the play. He i s very f r i e n d l y and often approached me "how are you" He hugs the coaches and seems very happy. Jasons mother says he never stops ta l k i n g at home but he never interacted verbally with me other than his behaving i n a teasing manner. Hia mother says he has a great sense of humour but doesn't think he i s handicapped or at least does not show i t i f he does. She says, he does forget and understands people but has a hard time meeting people. His teacher says that he r e a l l y picks up in P.E. then regresses and that she thinks i t could be due to the s k i l l s not happening on a regular basis or not t r a n s f e r r i n g from hockey to school and vice versa or that i t i s emotional. LARRY Waa born in 1965 and went to Oakridge school. he l i v e s with his foster mother and works at Pandora/Varco. Larry has downs syndrome and i s very overweight. He i s a b i t d i f f i c u l t to understand but talks a l l the time about his g i r l friends and church and when he spoke, he stood in very close proximity - too close for comfort. He often behaved defi a n t l y and stubbornly in practises, laying down on the ground when he didn't want to do 1 5 £ something, or crying "I don't want to be on t h i s team, uh, uh. I don't want to." Larry did not seem interested in the game at a l l and spent most of his time t r y i n g to get attention from the coaches. He could be a moat courtly and charming i n d i v i d u a l . SAM Was born in 1961. He i s looking for a 30b through Jobs West and i s also looking for a residence. Presently he i s l i v i n g with his father, one of the athletes t o l d me his mother died a short time ago. He i s a u t i s t i c , very t a l l , large and good looking. Sam never misses a practise, always comes in cutoff jeans and holds the hockey s t i c k d i r e c t l y in front of him l i k e a cane. He does not interact with other players but often makes rep e t i t i o u s noises "bobby bubbles, bobby bubbles", "Camay, Camay" and sometimes he s p i t s or blows his l i p s and corrects himself "That's s i l l y , i s n ' t i t ? And i t s bad for your l i p s . And the doctor said so. Is that appropriate behaviour or inappropriate behaviour?" During practises, nobody corrects Sam but during games when normal players are present, they correct him and act as though they are embarrassed. Sam does not seem connected to the game any more than he i s to the players. He has been going to school to get t r a i n i n g for a job but has yet to succeed i n finding a job. MURRAY Was born in 1962 and went to Burnaby South High School. He l i v e s with his b l i n d aunt in an apartment and works at Atlas on Powell "a regular company." Murray i s d i f f i c u l t to understand 153 but i s very mild mannered. He doesn't interact much with anybody and according to Cam "Apparently he doesn't have any fr i e n d s . His aunt paid me to take him to a show. I was surprised." Although after watching Linda f l i r t with many of the males on the team, he made an attempt to imitate t h i s at the end of the season but looked as though he f e l t extremely s e l f concious. Murray plays hard but i s not too concerned with the r e s u l t s of the games. LINDA Was born in 1944 and says she went to Our Lady of Sorrows in grades 1, 2, and 3 and then went to Oakridge. She was l i v i n g in a group home but i s now in a semi-independent apartment s i t u a t i o n and i s not employed. At the beginning of the season, Linda came as a spectator and was s i t t i n g on the s i d e l i n e s "doing math homework" - she said she had a test to study f o r . I had asked her why she didn't play and she said "I can't. My knees have been operated on" (later she t o l d me she just had a tubal l i g a t i o n ) but she joined the next week and turned out to be a very competent player as Terry said "she's good". When I asked her what her reasons for playing were she said "You talked me into i t . You asked me i f I was going to s t a r t and I did. I wanted to learn how to play." Linda has a problem around men and has had involved f l i r t a t i o n s with at least f i v e team members although she purports to be married. She has an extensive fantasy world. At the end of the season she became distraught saying that a team member had put his hands down her pants, another g i r l on the other team was threatening her with a knife, Tom was bothering 154 her about, money and Don (member of another team) had raped her f r i e n d . She also was going to have serious surgery and when I l a s t talked to her was going to "Violence school." But Linda i s very a r t i c u l a t e and well groomed and has a pleasant manner, however she does take centre stage. ED Was born in the early 1940s ( he says he i s 46) and was reluctant to say where he went to school. "In New Westminster. I could t e l l you but i t wouldn't be necessary...oh well. Woodlands." His mother recently died and Ed l i v e s on his own in an apartment although he i s close to his family who took him "to Hawaii six times and Mexico." He formerly played with the Vancouver Richmond Association team i n 1972 and went to Special Olympics in Winnipeg in 1974. He says that f l o o r hockey was i n f e r i o r because there was no competition. He i s a philosopher and has wry wit and yet i s capable of taking off his pants in th gymn to change into his sweats. He i s t a l l , slender, though he i s concerned with his weight - "they're (other team mates) not concerned with taking o f f the weight but as you get older i t ' s important" and he has thick glasses and often has trouble with his sight when he i s playing. Ed i s voracious i n his pursuit of a goal. Nothing stands in his way i n his determination to win. He t a l k s constantly about hockey scores, d e t a i l s about teams and he i s c r i t i c a l of referees and his team mates performance, sometimes displaying disgust at t h e i r incompetence "some players weren't up to doing anything" or "I don't know why, he never doe anything." Ed i s a r t i c u l a t e and an avid Canuck fan and i s f u l l 155 of comments and information about the hockey world. He i s one of the most opinionated people on the team. I had c a l l e d him one night at his home and the T.V. was blaring so loudly I could hardly hear him. Ed also never looks a person in the eye. CAROL Was born i n 1967 and f i r s t went to school at the Childrens' Foundation (because of severe emotional problems), then went to Oakridge and then regular high school. She l i v e d at home (after the hockey season). Her brother always brought her to practises. Carol i s a t t r a c t i v e and an excellent player and scores often. When she misses a shot, she sometimes bangs her head against the wall or bites herself, a behaviour that very much alarmed a volunteer coach. She takes her purse wherever she goes and usually has food tucked inside and a cup of coffee with her as well. Although she knows she i s not to do t h i s , nothing stops her from t r y i n g . Carol said almost nothing for the f i r s t two months, and I was shocked when she approached me and said " I f I asked you question would you t e l l me? How do I t e l l people what a seizure i s ? " I had never interviewed her because I assumed she was nonverbal. She i s a u t i s t i c . She was very fond of one of the volunteer coaches and made him a pair of s l i p p e r s . When she asked me i f I would l i k e her to make me a pair, I said sure and she r e p l i e d " T h a t ' l l be ten d o l l a r s . " She talked about her medication and seizures and physical discomfort and l i k e Carrie suffers pain in her abdomen (stress?) 156 GRANT Was born in 1946 and went to "private school." He l i v e s in an apartment on his own and makes money by looking after the cleaning of the building. He i s small and balding and t a l k s nonstop. His nickname by the team members i s "chatterbox"..."he t a l k s too much." Grant i s concerned with d e t a i l "we've got 24 new s t i c k s f o r the game for both teams. Barbs ordering 12 new s t i c k s for the game...Oh what a great meal they catered to us at the bowling banquet.. roast beef, mashed potatoes. They are going to have the suspenders aft e r the banquet and they're going to have 134 athletes." He i s sometimes given the task of handing out forms with athletes names on them. His speech i s slow and he always has a smile on his face. He r e a l l y appears to enjoy himself during the games. At the tournament, his parents came to watch and his brother was a score keeper. He seems confident. Grant c a l l s Pam, the coordinator at home to check out d e t a i l s and make sure nobody has forgotten anything. He would make a good team manager. However, he i s apparently absent minded when i t comes to himself: he forgot his shoes and Pam had to run to his house to get them before a game and he has been run over three times in the same spot by a car. BOB Was born i n 1963 and l i v e s i n the Arlington group home. He works at a lumber yard. Bob i n i t i a l l y was scary to be around. He said nothing but leered and stood extremely and uncomfortably close to my body and for the f i r s t few practises asked for a ride home and did not e a s i l y take no for an answer. By the end of the 157 season, he was normal in his interaction with me. He regularly bears cuts and bruises "I had a seizure at work and h i t the concrete. I was l i f t i n g heavy boxes." He i s t a l l and looks normal but moves and reacts slowly. His speech i s slow and laboured, sometimes i t appears as though he i s on drugs of some sor t . He had a problem with Linda i n being accused of taking advantage of her and he brought a handicapped g i r l to practise to get her "on the team" but he i s a good and determined player. He had to be ph y s i c a l l y restrained from playing at the tournament af t e r having been d i s q u a l i f i e d following two seizures on the gymn f l o o r . JAKE Was born in 1967 and l i v e s with foster parents. He i s native Indian and was very f r i e n d l y and chatty at the s t a r t of the season. He t o l d me about "Pow wow" that he attends with his s o c i a l worker and described the things he had learned at Riley Park Community centre. We played basketball and he showed me the shots he had learned at the centre and t o l d me he weight l i f t e d there as well. In mid February, there was an incident in which Greg alleged Jake strangled him in the washroom and Jake did not return to hockey after t h i s . My assumption was that the reason was connected to t h i s incident, but I found out l a t e r that that was not the case at a l l . 158 SIMON Was born in 1953 and went to Oakridge. He l i v e s in the Arlington group home. Simon i s nonverbal and hyperactive. He looks quite handicapped and has trouble i n c o n t r o l l i n g h is emotions in the gymn although he always has a smile on his face. His body i s r i g i d and i t i s d i f f i c u l t to know what he understands but every practise he brings a helmet to a coach for assistance in putting the strap on. He i s fussy about the f i t and sometimes t r i e s on a l o t of helmets before he i s happy. When he got a new pair of sweat pants, he pointed t h i s out to us proudly. Simon had trouble in warmup and needed assistance i n positioning his body. During games, he could get upset e a s i l y and was guided o f f the f l o o r to cool down. GREG Was born i n 1961 and went to Oakridge. He i s an only c h i l d and l i v e s at home with his parents. Greg works at Panndora/Varco. His mother Barb i s the equipment manager for the team. Greg i s mentally handicapped, hemiplegic and has a shunt in his neck. He i s more of a loner in that he does not interact with other players - does not converse. But he ta l k s a l o t and i s always cheerful. He t o l d me "I'm always on c a l l . The guy I replace gets drunk on alcohol and I have to go i n . " He t o l d me I should not work s h i f t s " I t ' s hard on you" as apparently his father worked s h i f t s before he r e t i r e d . Gregs' attention span i s short and i t was d i f f i c u l t to get an interview with him although he always was asking i f I would interview him. 159 TOM l a a former Vancouver player. I f i r s t , met him when I was working with the Burnaby Soccer team and he was a spectator at a Burnaby Sports Club game against the Burnaby Blue Hawks. He was so proud of his coach P h i l Leblond. Tom came to the practises t h i s past season infrequently but was feared. He reeked of alcohol on occasion and bragged of having to f i r e someone. He extorts money according to players and the equipment manager who t o l d me that Special Olympics could do nothing as long as he didn't i n t e r f e r e i n the gymn. He would apparently approach athletes outside the centre. Tom assumed that because he was a good player he could not show up to practises but be allowed to compete in Sportsfest and was very upset when Chris said he could not. JORDAN Is a mentally handicapped Burnaby coach/manager/player. He i s married to P a t t i , l i v e s in a house, drives a car, works at Vancouver General Hospital and seems to be everywhere at once. He fantasizes about being a director/leader/man of importance. Jordan i s manipulative and devious according to athletes. Jess said " L i s a , Terry and I are enemies to Burnaby. We used to play with Burnaby. I used to be captain. Jordan was coach. He's the one who cut us." I asked why he cut them and he r e p l i e d "Beats me" They don't t r u s t him and c a l l him "Jordanie" except Al who says he i s his f r i e n d . Jordan presents another face to normal 1 6 0 coaches and outsiders - eager to please, humble such as in posing a question to the coach Pat "How do you c a l l aggressive playing?" and Pat responded with "I don't know. You're the Ref". 161 D A T E JANUARY 5 JANUARY 12 JANUARY 1 9 EVENT ORIENTATION PRACTISE GAME-JEWISH COM. CNTR. VS. VAN. TEAM APPENDIX B Practice and Game Schedule LOCATION MT. PLEASANT MT. PLEASANT MT. PLEASANT COFFEE JANUARY 2 6 GAME-Super Valu VAN. TEAM MT. PLEASANT FEB GAME-Super Valu VAN. TEAM MT. PLEASANT FEB 8 PRACTISE FEB 1 5 PRACTISE FEB 1 6 GAME-BURNABY TEAM VS. VAN. TEAM S.F. SCHOOL S.F. SCHOOL MT. PLEASANT FEB 2 2 PRACTISE FEB 2 3 GAME-Super Valu VAN. TEAM S.F. SCHOOL MT. PLEASANT FEB 2 9 GAME-RICHMOND TEAM S.F. SCHOOL VS. VAN. TEAM MARCH 1 PRACTISE MARCH 7 PRACTISE CANCELLED MARCH 8 GAME-MT. PLEASANT COMMUNITY STAFF VS. VAN. TEAM MT. PLEASANT MT. PLEASANT MCDONALDS 4 A T H L E T E S MARCH 14 MARCH 1 5 MARCH 2 1 GAME-BURNABY TEAM VS. VAN. DRILLERS PRACTISE GAME-SURREY TEAM VS. BURNABY TEAM S.F. SCHOOL MT. PLEASANT S.F. SCHOOL (REFEREES PRACTISE) MCDONALDS 2 ATHLETES MCDONALDS 4 ATHLETES MARCH 2 2 GAME-COQUITLAM TEAM VS. VAN. MT. PLEASANT MARCH 2 9 GAME-BURNABY VS.VAN MT. PLEASANT 16cl APPENDIX C Question Framework The purpose of the study was to discover the athletes' understanding of: 1. the coaches' goals, p r i o r i t i e s and expectations; 2. teams' goals, p r i o r i t i e s and strategies; 3. players' goals, p r i o r i t i e s and expectations. I began interviewing athletes informally on March 1, 1988, and continued throughout t h i s month. On the f i r s t day of practise, as I spoke to each athlete i n d i v i d u a l l y , I t o l d them that I was interested in t h e i r opinions about how the team worked, how they f e l t about the sport etc. and that I would be asking them l a t e r i n the season to speak to me. They seemed interested and some alluded to other interviews they had participated in "special Olympics c a l l e d me to t h e i r o f f i c e . They did a l i t t l e interview and did a story." Later on in the season, I recognised that many of the athletes watched a great deal of sport on T.V. and I wondered i f the enthusiastic cooperation i n being interviewed reminded them of sports p e r s o n a l i t i e s being interviewed "after the game." I centered my questions around the following framework but often I was short c i r c u i t e d by a limited verbal a b i l i t y or understanding of what I was getting at. I generally followed where the athletes led me. 1. What does the athlete understand of the coaches' goals? What i s his/her d e f i n i t i o n of a goal? Does he/she have s p e c i f i c or broad goals? Does he/she have weekly goals or seasonal or both? Are his/her goals individual oriented or team oriented? 163 Are his/her goals competitive natured; towards behaviour modification; team sportsmanship; personal development; f i t n e s s ; s o c i a l i z a t i o n ; integration? Are his/her goals consistent? Does he/she adjust his/her goals often, occasionally, or at a l l ? Does he/she think they are r e a l i s t i c and attainable? 2. What does the athlete understand about the coaches' expectations? What i s his/her d e f i n i t i o n of expectation? How does he/she define mental handicap? How does he/she perceive a b i l i t y of the individual? Of the team? What are his/her expectations of comprehension of s k i l l s , d r i l l s , strategy? Does he/she expect the athlete to have personal goals? Does he/she expect to involve the athlete in decision making or goal setting? Does he/she expect good attendance and proper behaviour, or what are his/her expectations regarding attendance, behaviour, dress? What type of re l a t i o n s h i p does he/she expect to have with athletes? 3. What i s the athletes' understanding of the coaches' p r i o r i t i e s ? Is i t competition; recreation; s o c i a l i s a t i o n ; sportsmanship? Is i t a p r i o r i t y that he/she "know" each athlete? What are his/her p r i o r i t i e s i n practise session? In seasonal planning? Do they d i f f e r ? What i s his/her philosophy? Is an athletes' personal development of special interest? 164 4. What are the athletes' goals? Why does he/she p a r t i c i p a t e i n f l o o r hockey? What does he/she expect to achieve in a practise session? In the season? Does he have long range goals i . e . longer than the season? What does he perceive team goals too be? Are his goals status oriented (passing and covering), m a t e r i a l i s t i c (trophies, medals) or a l t r u i s t i c (getting friends to p a r t i c i p a t e , helping team mates)? Are they consistent from week to week? Are his goals c o l l e c t i v e (team) or individual? Does he want to model the coach or any other team member? 5. What are the athletes' p r i o r i t i e s ? Are his/her p r i o r i t i e s competitive; r e c r e a t i o n a l ; or related to s o c i a l i s a t i o n ? Are his/her p r i o r i t i e s personal or oriented towards the team ( i . e . i f winning i s a p r i o r i t y , then i s i t winning as a team or achieving his/her personal best)? Is his/her r e l a t i o n s h i p with the coach a p r i o r i t y over and above his/her r e l a t i o n s h i p with his/her peers? Is the sport a p r i o r i t y in his/her l i f e ? 6. What are athletes' expectations? What does the athlete expect of the coach? i . e . f r i e n d , teacher, father f i g u r e , a u t h o r i t a r i a n / d i s c i p l i n a r i a n , counsellor, r o l e model. What does the athlete expect of himself/herself? i . e . high l e v e l of s k i l l , popularity, punctual attendance? What does the athlete expect of his/her team mates? i . e . l o y a l t y , companionship, support? How does he/she expect to be treated by 165 his/her coach and peers? What does he/she expect of practise sessions? Of the season? Of competitions? Is there a difference among these? 7. What are the d e f i n i t i o n s that the athlete applies to the following terms team competition practise coach recreation game goal strategy athlete expectation d r i l l p r i o r i t y s k i l l What does the athlete see as "role of coach", "role of athlete", " r o l e of team". What are the c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of a good coach? A good athlete? 1 6 6 APPENDIX D Taxonomy COMPETITION Winning feels good. Depends on It's important that you ho* your attitude is when you can show them what you're Min. Whether you feel good made of. about yourself. Feel good about winning. Don't make your opponent feel bad. Don't go "oh I won and you didn't", that'5 like bragging. dinning isn't everything as long as you have fun and enjoy the competition. If you losing, you gotta be willing to lose. If you're winning you gotta be willing to win. 167 STRATEGY I didn't have to go to drama because I case here. Defense forward. Playing defense. Defense should be helping. Attack defense. Keep in your end. Position one plays forward. Haunt the other teas. CHECKING KOM to check Drills One on One Two on Two Passing Shooting. Strive to be the best. Keep going all the way. Play hard. Stay on the puck. 168 It's good for everyone to know how he's doing. I felt good, I noved up and scored. When we did that - everyone was quiet and then after the goal they cheered and said nice going. A good team is in Richmond tournament. Good team we shook their hands. We play our best, j There is good sportsmanship. On some of the teams there isn't. I don't want to mention all of them, but Burnaby is tough. They don't shake hands after the game. I think that's a bad attitude. Always should be good sportsmanship, excitement, enjoyment. Good sportsmanship is "a person shouldn't get mad. A person shouldn't go off to one player. Everybody tries to do what they can do. Everybody should realize there's always a next time. Now Jake, he hasn't come bask. Some people that are so anxious to win they'd want to do anything, it irritates them. They don't accept defeat. They're here to win but for fun too. Maybe he thought he did something wrong to Greg (Jake). I thought it was wrong what he did to Greg, totally wrong. There are lots of good sports on our team. But the worst behaviour I seen is too much yelling on bench. Can't hear what the coach is saying. Can't hear the referee or the line change. 169 PHYSICAL FITNESS Don't cose to hockey for that (fitness). I'D Al years old and I need to bum off as EMch as I can. That's the reason I think there should be too much activity. I do it every Wednesday two exercise classes. One by where I work, I like fitness very ouch. I lost quite a few pounds here, about ten pounds. 178 WHAT is « mm To learn to play In Richnond To raise tnortey. Everybody together, hockey, learning Tournament - good team It's every individual more. we shake their hands not just me. we play our best. 171 REASONS FOR COKING OUT Competition To practise I case out to watch, then I got into it. You talked we into it. You asked roe if I was going to start and I did, I wanted to learn to play. For fun. It's an activity for besides work. To stay off the street. I like the sport. I love the game. I like it, I don't like Richmond. Too much cliqueness. Here it's much nicer. I love floor hockey. I come here for recreation, socialisation and leisure. Socialize. I got to keep fit. They're not concerned about taking off the weight but as you get older it 's important. Basic reasons - for fitness, I like to keep active. Exercise. For the exercise. Fitness. 178 COOL DOWN We have to do Taking a shower, it everyday. 173 with a drill . 123 . 123. Not really sure. exercise. I'm in aerobics, tennis, swim team. You exercise. 174 PENALTIES If you get a penalty its' two ainutes. Hooking, smashing, high sticking tripping. j For high sticking. No fighting. I No high sticking. No fighting. No arguing. No pushing. No slashing. No tripping either. High sticking, slashing any kiraj of thing. High sticking, slashing, body checking, Smashing with stick, shouting, pushing, flgressive playing, talking back to coaches, violence. 175 SOCIALISING Socialising is really good. You have to be really grown up to be around people. You got to act appropriately or people won't want to be with you I cone here for recreation, socialisation and leisure. I think it's important. Lisa, Grant or Dan would call me to see how my work is. I call to ask how their work is. . We socialise on the phone. Talk to friends. Introduce ourselves, shake hands and say my name is so and so. Every monday and tuesday its' a thing for me to get away from home. We learn at the house not to sit and watch T.V. Set into a club and do things. It's a place to come and learn and meet other people and that's socialisation 176 DRILL When people...when people. No high sticking. Three on two; we and john would play defense and pass it ; two on one; Maria up the goal tender; passing drill ; Mork with someone else and pass. 1 I'm not sure what a drill is. Three on two; two on one; defermsive drill - having two defense men oij three forwards. Back and forth. Back and forth. In and out pylons. Basketball. Flip pass, fool pass, checking, one on one, three on three, front and centre. They need it. It gets a team in shape but it gets a person in shape. I do like movement. The drills are good for younger. I don't like to shoot the puck all the time. I'm getting older. I like to run, shoot, pass. diii Our group ia a drill - they try to condition you. Stretching, running around the gym. 177 BAD COACH I didn't like the way the other coach pushed Be like that last night, I dthought he was going to hurt EB. 178 GOOD COftCH They just the teas After play hockey take a break, finish, coffee time. Real nice to us. Makes sure we« get rides and everything. Tells us how to' get the bus. Able to be at' tournaments. Pat, the way he talks to us, very nice. Tries to tell me what I'm supposed to do on the floor They show everyone different positions to play on our team. Telling us hoow to move up more, blocking other people. Move up •ore so we get a goal. ows us how it's done. Go to the coach, talk to him if we have a problem. Hard worker. Phil wasen't a lousy one. ey're teaching us. Good kowledge to teach. Helps you. 179 COACHES ROLE As a player and a friend or whatever, when we are not playing. V^*" Bosses have a right to teach us. \ \ b teach us how to play \ in sports. Teach forward, jogging, touching the wall, cose back. It*5 a job. They're working for special Olympics. It's the players who decide if a coach loses his job. Coaching is a stressful1 job. Coaches have a tough responsibility trying to motivate and keep a team up. For coaching. To make them understand the game a lot better. Hake sure we're on different lines. For helping on differnt lines <the players). Some coaches get picky, you don't have to be told one hundred times. 180 COACHES EXPECTATIONS Expect good sprtraanship. 1 and good behaviour and To stay out of trouble and tell conduct at all times. if going anywhere. 181 A P P E N D I X E E T H N O S C I E N C E MODEL JANUARY PHASE i FEBRUARY 2 PHASE 3 orientation rapport Appendix C observation conversation Appendix B focused observation informal interview ELICITATIQN TECHNIQUES QUESTION FRAMEWORK participant observation approach interview with a topic infernal interview data categorized domain taxonomy ^attr^butes ̂ Appendix A,F T H f« R Y CODING DEFINING v . / CONSTANT COMPARATIVE METHOD OF ANALYSIS 182

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