Sport’s "concussion crisis" has been characterized by controversial scientific discoveries, athlete suicides, and high-profile lawsuits involving professional sports leagues, while provoking widespread media coverage, changes to game rules, and debate about the future of many popular sports. Sociocultural Examinations of Sports Concussion is the first edited collection to bring together multiple sociocultural perspectives on sports concussion that interrogate the social, economic, political, and historical forces shaping the cultural impacts of these injuries.
Each of the ten chapters moves beyond biomedical or neuroscientific paradigms to critically examine a specific intersection of sociocultural factors influencing public perceptions about concussion or athlete experiences of brain injury. These include analyses of media and advertising, medical treatment and diagnostic protocols, gender and masculinity, developments in equipment and scientific models, economics and labor politics, understandings of trauma and recovery, public health philosophies, and disciplinary differences in framing the ontologies of concussion.
Drawing from a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches, Sociocultural Examinations of Sports Concussion offers a diverse set of analyses examining brain injuries as cultural and embodied phenomena affecting more than just athletes’ brains, but also embedded within and (re)shaping meanings, identities, and social contexts. It is valuable reading for graduate students and researchers interested in the experience and treatment of sports concussion, sports sociology, and sports technology.
Part 1: Introduction
1. Forces of Impact: Critically Examining Sports’ Concussion Crises
Matt Ventresca and Mary G. McDonald
Part 2: History, Health, Ethics
2. Concussion, Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, and the Medicalization of Sport
3. "A Clear Conscience": Advertising Football Equipment and Responsibility for Injuries
4. Football Helmet Safety and the Veil of Standards
Daniel R. Morrison
5. What Does the Precautionary Principle Demand of Us? Ethics, Population Health Policy, and Sport-Related TBI
Part 3: The Politics of Trauma, Experience, and Research
6. "I Kinda’ Lost My Sense of Who I Was": Foregrounding Youths’ Experiences in Critical Conversations about Sport-Related Concussions
William Bridel, Matt Ventresca, Danika Kelly, Kevin Viliunas, and Kathryn Schneider
7. Trauma and Recovery: Boxing and Violence Against Women in a ‘Neurological Age’
Cathy van Ingen
8. The Athlete’s Body and the Social Text of Suicide
Sean Brayton and Michelle Helstein
9. Brain Politics: Gendered Difference and Traumatic Brain Injury in Sport
10. Beyond the Biopsychosocial: A Case for Critical Qualitative Concussion Research