Sport has long been used as a tool for political gain and many major sporting events are now often framed as a panacea to help combat issues such as rising obesity rates, decreasing physical activity levels and wider urban decline. In reality though, fostering a temporary ‘feel-good factor’ is the most that many of these events can ever achieve even though a number are now sold on the popular rhetoric of legacy. Drawing upon a range of events and the work of international scholars from a variety of disciplinary backgrounds, this collection offers insights into the ways in which events outside of the big two are (re)positioned as part of the wider sporting landscape. The chapters originally published as a special issue in Sport in Society.
1. Introduction: the contested terrain of major sporting events
John Harris, Fiona Skillen and Matthew L. McDowell
2. Sports mega-events – three sites of contemporary political contestation
3. Rugby World Cup: new directions or more of the same?
4. Using Habermas to crack the European football championships
5. Do the scale and scope of the event matter? The Asian Games and the relations between North and South Korea
Jung Woo Lee
6. The 1986 Commonwealth Games: Scotland, South Africa, sporting boycotts, and the former British Empire
Matthew L. McDowell and Fiona Skillen
7. Sacred turf: the Wimbledon tennis championships and the changing politics of Englishness
8. The Ryder Cup, national identities and team USA
John Harris, Sangkwon Lee and Mark Lyberger
9. The history of competitive balance in Commonwealth Games Boxing
David Chaplin and Sergio Mendoza
10. Young athlete major event experiences: brand co-creators and ambassadors
The social, cultural (including media) and political study of sport is an expanding area of scholarship and related research. While this area has been well served by the Sport in the Global Society series, the surge in quality scholarship over the last few years has necessitated the creation of Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives. The series will publish the work of leading scholars in fields as diverse as sociology, cultural studies, media studies, gender studies, cultural geography and history, political science and political economy. If the social and cultural study of sport is to receive the scholarly attention and readership it warrants, a cross-disciplinary series dedicated to taking sport beyond the narrow confines of physical education and sport science academic domains is necessary. Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives will answer this need.