Maybe you’ve been on a remote retreat somewhere without internet access. Maybe you’ve been on a no-electronics challenge. Those are the only reasons I can imagine you not knowing that Serena Williams, 23-time Grand Slam singles tennis champion and one of the world’s great athletes of all time, has played her final tournament matches. Here she is, in action this week.
The news and social media are filled with odes to Serena– what she means to tennis, to women’s tennis, to black women in tennis, to black women athletes– everyone, it seems, has something to say about how Serena Williams has touched their lives.
That includes us at Fit is a Feminist Issue. We’ve written a lot about Serena and the countless ways she’s a role model for us. We’ve spoken out fiercely about those who have policed her body, her clothing on and off the court, and tried to deny her the right to adequate health care, and the right to protest calls made during competitions in the way that men protest. Among other things.
Here are some posts we’ve written over the years:
- Do Venus and Serena compete against the men? Yes they do!
- Repeat after me: Athleticism is beauty. Athleticism is beauty. Athleticism is beauty.
- Serena speaks up: “It’s never been easy… but I think about the next girl”
- Let women wear what they want
- Serena Williams and the multiple ways of policing black women’s bodies
- Loving Serena
While you’re here, you might also enjoy Kim’s post on Naomi Osaka, another woman of color and tennis powerhouse: Naomi Osaka vs The Patriarchy (OR: That time a talented female athlete asked reporters to shut up and it didn’t go her way. Quel Surprise.)
And for some resources on black women in sports, see Nat’s post: Black History, Black Present and Black Futures
As Serena Williams moves on to other business and family ventures, we wish her all the luck in the world. Of course she won’t need it: she’s the GOAT!
Readers, what are you memories or favorite associations with Serena Williams? If you have a story you’d like to share, we’d love to hear it.