Taylor Vann

Document Type



Entertainment, Arts, and Sports Law | Law and Gender


In recent years, transgender and intersex athletes competing in track and field have come under intense scrutiny. The most notable of these athletes at the elite level is Caster Semenya of South Africa. Semenya has been accused of benefiting from an unfair competitive advantage due to her natural biological makeup. In response, international track and field’s governing body has promulgated multiple regulations to address athletes like Semenya. This article examines these regulations and their impact on transgender and intersex athletes at multiple levels of competition, It argues that these regulations and similar attempts under Title IX in the United States are fundamentally flawed because they attempt to create a level playing field when, in reality, success in track and field, like most other sports, is and always has been dependent on differences in natural abilities. These regulations and policies are revealed to be inadequate because they proceed based on a flawed perception of what is considered a fair competitive advantage.