1st Edition

Sport, Forced Migration and the 'Refugee Crisis'

By Enrico Michelini Copyright 2023
    142 Pages 10 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    Drawing on original research, this book looks at what sport can tell us about the social processes, patterns and outcomes of forced migration and the 'refugee crisis'.

    Adopting a systems theory framework and examining different sport disciplines, performance levels and settings, it represents a significant contribution to our understanding of one of the most urgent social issues facing the modern world. The book explores four key aspects of sport’s intersection with forced migration. Firstly, it looks at how the media covers sport in relation to the 'refugee crisis', specifically coverage of refugee elite athletes. Secondly, it examines the adaptation of sport organisations to the 'refugee crisis', including the culture, programmes and structures that promote or obstruct sport for refugees. Thirdly, the book looks at sport in refugee sites, and how sport can be used as therapy, an escape or empowerment for refugees but also how it can reinforce the divisions between staff and the refugees themselves. Finally, the book looks at how forced migration influences and is influenced by participation in elite sport, by examining the biographies of elite migrant athletes.

    A richly descriptive, critical and illuminating piece of work, this book is fascinating reading for anybody with an interest in sport, migration, sociology or the relationship between sport and wider society.

    The Open Access version of this book, available at www. taylorfrancis.com, has been made available under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license.

    1. Introduction

    2. State of the Art Research on Forced Migration and Sport

    3. Definitions of Key Terms in Forced Migration and Sport

    4. The ‘Refugee Crisis’

    5. Systems Theoretical Framework

    6. Methodical Approaches of the Projects

    7. Results of the Projects

    8. Overarching Discussion of the Results

    9. Conclusion


    Enrico Michelini is Professor of sociology and economy of sport at the University of Saarland, Germany. His research focusses on sport in the contexts of health promotion, human migration and social conflicts. In his projects, he has worked with different qualitative methods and particularly with document analysis, ethnography and interviews. His current research focus concerns the role of sport in the context of the so called 'refugee crisis'.