Nature sports such as skiing, climbing, and surfing have had a significant influence on Western popular culture since the mid-twentieth century and participation in such sports continues to grow. Written in a clear and accessible style, this important book provides a comprehensive philosophical analysis of nature sports.
Philosophy and Nature Sports offers an engaging inquiry into how nature sports differ from mainstream sports, how these differences are related to their value as human activities, and the role of the environments in which such sports take place. Addressing the claim that the most distinctive feature of nature sports is the relationship between participants and the natural world, the book also examines a wide range of topics, such as ethics, risk, gender construction, the social role of nature sport subcultures and the aesthetic experiences of nature sports athletes. Tying these together is the question of what it is that attracts us to nature sports and why they hold meaning for us.
This is a valuable resource for students and academics in fields such as alternative sports, alternative sport subcultures, sport philosophy, sport and social issues, ethics, and phenomenology. It is also a fascinating read for outdoor educators and practitioners.
Table of Contents
1. What are Nature Sports?
2. The Nature of Nature Sports
3. Categorizing Nature Sports
4. Nature Sports, Intensity, and the Sublime
5. Ski Bums, Surf Bums, Climbing Bums: Philosophical Issues in the Sport Bum Lifestyle
6. Constructing Gender in Nature Sports
7. Reflections on Risk
8. Aesthetic Experience in Nature Sports
Kevin Krein is Professor of Philosophy and Academic Director of Outdoor Studies at the University of Alaska Southeast, USA. He is a co-owner and guide at Alaska Powder Descents ski guiding service and the author of numerous articles on diverse issues in nature sports philosophy.