Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Arts (MA)

Degree Name

Communication Studies

Department or School/College

Communication Studies

Committee Chair

Dr. Greg Larson

Commitee Members

Dr. Joel Iverson, Dr. Sarah Halvorson


risk, identity, outdoor adventure sports, place, mountains


University of Montana

Subject Categories

Organizational Communication


This study explores the various discursive resources influencing the identities of outdoor adventure athletes, specifically in regard to risk taking behaviors. The qualitative analysis reported here relied on participants’ accounts on how they understood themselves, specifically as outdoor adventure athletes. Interviewees had the opportunity to reflect on their identities when they were asked questions about their experiences in their sports. Discourse was the means to both develop and express understanding of their identities. Results indicate that personal relationships and mountain environments were perceived to have a major influence on both identity and risk taking. These influences emerged through the processes of identity work athletes engaged in while participating in their sports. Ultimately, having an identity as an outdoor adventure athlete potentially means that outdoor adventure athletes are more likely to take risks than others.



© Copyright 2019 Mira Ione Cleveland