1st Edition

Football Fans, Activism and Social Change

By Dino Numerato Copyright 2018
    178 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    178 Pages 1 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The study of football fandom is a fast-growing area of research in the sociology of sport. The first work of its kind, this book explores football fan activism and its impact on contemporary football culture in England, Italy and the Czech Republic.

    Presenting a comparative study of fan activism in national and transnational contexts, it explores the characteristics of each country’s football fan culture as well as the varying and at times volatile dynamics between fans, authorities and the mass media. Its chapters address key themes and issues including: fans’ reactions to policing and security measures in football stadiums; the socio-cultural significance of symbols and rituals for fans at football games; and fans’ critical engagement with football club ownership and management. Offering original insights into the power of fan activism to influence social change, this book has wider implications for understanding social movements in other cultural and political spheres beyond Europe.

    Football Fans, Activism and Social Change is fascinating reading for all students, scholars and football fans with an interest in sport studies, fan culture, politics and society.

    1. Wind of Change: An Introduction

    2. The Football Fan Activism Complex

    3.Fan Activism in National and Transnational Contexts

    4. Reflexivity and Social Change

    5. Fans’ Struggle Over Policing, Security Measures and Criminalization

    6. Fans’ Struggle Over Socio-Cultural Aspects: Identities, Symbols and Rituals

    7. Fans’ Struggle Over Governance: Mismanagement, Involvement and Ownership

    8. Discussion and Conclusions


    Dino Numerato is Assistant Professor and Head of the Department of Sociology at Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic. He obtained his PhD from Masaryk University (Brno, Czech Republic) and was a Research Fellow at Loughborough University (Loughborough, UK), Bocconi University (Milan, Italy) and Sapienza University (Rome, Italy). His principal research interests include football fandom, social theory, sport governance, sport policy, mass media and sport, corruption in sport and match-fixing, and the sociology of health-care professionals. His work has also been published in Sociology, Current Sociology, Qualitative Research, Journal of Consumer Culture, Sociology of Health and Illness, Journal of Sport and Social Issues and International Review for the Sociology of Sport.

    "This book provides a detailed view of fan-based activism and of fans’ response to globalisation and commodification processes that have affected football over the past decades. By analysing fans’ activities, it can be said that some aspects of their struggles can be applied to an analysis of the wider social context. This book, with its extraordinary contribution to this field of social sciences, is an excellent roadmap for further research into the phenomena of fan activism and processes of change in modern sports, especially football." - Dino Vukušić, Institute of Social Sciences ‘Ivo Pilar’

    "This book offers a crisp, lucid and measured account of European football fans’ engagements and involvement in seeking to change football culture and society more widely. To achieve this, Numerato introduces several new and helpful concepts, including the ‘football fan activism complex’ and, expanding on his earlier work, ‘reflexivity’ as a defining feature of late modernity visible in fan activism." - Andrew Hodges, Sport in Society