This book explores the expansion of rugby from its imperial and amateur upper-class white male core into other contexts throughout the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The development of rugby in the racially divided communities of the setter empire and how this was viewed are explored initially. Then the editors turn to four case studies of rugby's expansion beyond the bounds of the British Empire (France, Italy, Japan and the USA). The role of women in rugby is examined and the subsequent development of women's rugby as one of the fastest growing sports for women in Europe, North America and Australasia in the 1980s and 1990s. The final section analyses the impact of commercialisation, professionalisation and media on rugby and the impact on the historic rugby culture linked to an ethos of amateurism.
The Independent- "The issues explored - homophobia, nationalism, globalisation, gender, commercialisation - are hardly everyday talking points in the average clubhouse bar… But there are some green shoots of inspiration amongst the heavily politicised verbiage."
The Sports Historian, Vol 19, No 2, Nov 99
"A stimulating and innovative compilation."
Choice- " By examining the sport within ten settings defined by different racial, national, gender, and marketing perspectives, this book goes beyond the editor"s earlier work, Making Men: Rugby and Masculine Identity which looked at the games within Britain and its "Empire"