Samantha King, PhD

Samantha King

Professor and Director (on sabbatical until Jan. 1, 2025)

Sociocultural Studies of Sport, Health and the Body

People Directory Affiliation Category

PhD (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

MA (Queen’s University)

BSocSci (University of Birmingham)

Cross Appointments

Gender Studies, Faculty of Arts & Science

Cultural Studies


Undergraduate Courses

HLTH 334 – The Politics of Health and Illness

HLTH 434 – Social Movements in Health

Graduate Courses

KHS 869 – The Body and Social Theory

Research Summary

Trained in cultural studies and sociology, I am an interdisciplinary scholar of the body, health and sport.  I work with feminist, queer, and critical race theories to research a broad variety of topics ranging from drugs to food.  My first book, Pink Ribbons, Inc:  Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy, is the subject of an NFB documentary by the same name:

Graduate Student Opportunities

Students at all levels (MA, PhD, postdoctoral) with an interest in qualitative research on the embodied dimensions of consumer culture are encouraged to apply.  Recent graduates have conducted critical, theoretically-informed work on the following subjects:  student mental health, acne, Movember, mud running, sport for development and peace, hockey nostalgia, and Russian breast cancer culture.  Although some internal funding is available, Canadian applicants are encouraged to apply for external funding from SSHRC or CIHR.

Sample Publications

  • Ali, A. & King, S. (Accepted). “He could be dangerous”: Orientalism, the “migrant crisis”, and the ‘risky’ representation of Muslim boxers in TSN’s Radical Play. Sociology of Sport Journal.
  • King, S. & Weedon, G. (Accepted). The nature of the body in sport and physical culture: From bodies and environments to ecological embodiment. Sociology of Sport Journal.
  • King, S. (2020). Towards a multispecies sport studies. In Newman, J., Thorpe, H., & Andrews, D. L. (Eds.), Sport, Physical Culture, and the Moving Body: Materialisms, Technologies, Ecologies (pp. 193-208). Rutgers University Press.
  • King, S., Carey, R. S., MacQuarrie, I., Millious, V.N., & Power, E. M., (Eds.). (2019). Messy Eating: Conversations on Animals as Food. New York: Fordham University Press.
  • King, S., & Weedon, G. (2019). Embodiment is ecological: The metabolic lives of whey protein powder. Body & Society. 26(1):82-106.
  • King, S. & Weedon, G. (2019). Enacting bodies: The multiplicity of whey protein and the making of corporealities. In M. McDonald & J. Sterling (Eds), Sports, Society, and Technology – Bodies, Practices, and Knowledge Production (pp. 175-194). Palgrave-Macmillan.
  • King, S. (2017). Feminist cultural studies. In L. Mansfield, J. Caudwell, B. Watson & B. Wheaton (Eds.), Palgrave Handbook of Feminisms in Sport, Leisure and Physical Education. London: Palgrave.
  • Adams M.L., Davidson, J., Jamieson, K., Helstein, M., Kyoung-Yim, K., King, S., McDonald, M.G., & Rail, G. (2016). Feminist cultural studies: Uncertainties and possibilities. Sociology of Sport Journal, 33, 75-91.
  • King, S. (2014). Oxy in Ontario: The multiple materialities of prescription drugs. International Journal of Drug Policy, 25, 486-493.
  • King, S., Carey, R.S., Jinnah, N., Millington, R., Phillipson, A., Prouse, C., and Ventresca, M. (2014). When is a drug not a drug? Brett Favre, prescription painkillers, and the National Football League. Sociology of Sport Journal, 31, 249-266.
  • McDonald, M. and King, S. (2012). A different contender? Barack Obama, the 2008 presidential campaign and the racial politics of sport. Ethnic and Racial Studies, 35(6), 1023-1039.
  • King, S. (2009). Virtually normal: Mark Bingham, the war on terror, and the sexual politics of sport. Journal of Sport and Social Issues, 33, 5-24.
  • King, S. (2008). What’s queer about (queer) sport sociology now? A review essay. Sociology of Sport Journal, 25, 419-442.
  • King, S. (2008). Offensive lines: Sport-state synergy in an era of perpetual war. Cultural Studies ~ Critical Methodologies, 8, 527-539.
  • King, S. (2006). Pink Ribbons, Inc: Breast Cancer and the Politics of Philanthropy. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press

Works In Progress

  • King, S., Carey, S., MacQuarrie, I., Millious, V., & Power, E. M. (Eds.) (submitted for review). Messy Eating: On Theory, Politics, and Animals as Food.
  • King, S. & Weedon, G. Protein Ecologies: Whey, Waste, and Wasting in the Anthropocene.


King Research Group Webpage