An Ethnography of Football and Masculinities in Jamaica : Letting the Football Talk book cover
1st Edition

An Ethnography of Football and Masculinities in Jamaica
Letting the Football Talk

ISBN 9781350056541
Published August 7, 2019 by Routledge
192 Pages

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Book Description

What can football among young men in Jamaica tell us about class, wealth, age, and concepts of masculinity? William Tantam presents an ethnographic study of the impact of football on men's lives in contemporary Jamaica. He illuminates how the football field relates to social and economic inequalities, and whether playing football in a mixed group has the effect of levelling the playing field between the more and less economically wealthy.Tantam presents insights into the life histories and football biographies of individuals, the relationship between wealth, education, and class, and explores how socioeconomic inequalities are embodied and enacted. With rich ethnographic detail, he analyses how the experience of watching international football matches and the English Premier League locates groups of spectators in relation to wider movements of capital. The book features case studies of individuals who play football in Jamaica, and penetrates an under-examined area in academic discussion of sport and masculinity. This will be a valuable addition to students of anthropology, sociology, football studies, cultural studies and gender studies.

Table of Contents

Introduction Player Profile: Cavin 1. The Jamaican Football Context: From the Plantation to Schoolboy Football Player Profile: Freddy 2. Shifting Boundaries: The Rules of the FieldPlayer Profile: Mr Bennett 3. The Pass: Older Players and Embodying Middle Class Etiquette Player Profile: Peter 4. The Salad: Younger Players and the Trick as a Tactic of ResistancePlayer Profile: Doc 5. Watching Football: Locating Jamaica within the World of Football Player Profile: Terry Conclusion Bibliography Notes Index

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William Tantam is Postdoctoral Fellow in Caribbean Studies at the Institute of Latin American Studies at the University of London, UK.


"This is an original, smart and rich ethnographic text that fills a gap in the anthropological literature around football and masculinities in the Caribbean, and refreshes many intellectual debates around men and masculinities in the 21st century. Using the example of ‘Black River’, this ethnography powerfully illustrates how the football space in the Caribbean is a major socio-cultural location of male socialisation, and looks at the myriad and complex ways in which such a process unfolds. - Dylan Kerrigan, The University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago Inspired by Bourdieu and Wacquant's embodied reflexive sociology, and presented in the tradition of C. L. R. James's intimate portraits of sport, race and coloniality, William Tantam deftly weaves together the lives of his interlocutors–and fellow football players–with themes of age, status, class, resistance and globalisation. He makes a fine contribution to the literatures on gender, sport and the Caribbean. - Jon P. Mitchell, University of Sussex, UK"