Bringing together many of the most influential scholars in sport and media studies, this book examines the diverse ways that media influences our understanding of the world’s most important sport events, dubbed sports mega-events. It sheds new light on how these events have been changed by the media, and have, in turn, adapted to media to further their brand’s cultural influence.
Focusing on the central concept of "mediatization" – the permeation of media into all spheres of contemporary life – the book presents original case studies of major events including the Olympics, FIFA, rugby and cricket World Cups, Tour de France, Super Bowl, World Series, Monaco Grand Prix, Wimbledon, and many more. Written from a truly international perspective, this is a seminal work in sport and media studies that reveals the growing political, economic, and cultural influences of sport mega-events in contemporary society.
Sport, Media and Mega-Events is an essential text for any course on the sociology of sport, event management, sport marketing, or featuring a cultural, communication or media studies approach to sport.
Table of Contents
Part I: Framing Sport, Media and Mega-Events
1. The Curious Case of the Megasporting Event: Media, Mediatization and Seminal Sports Events
[Andrew C. Billings and Lawrence A. Wenner]
2. Sports Mega-Events: Mass Media and Symbolic Contestation
3. Media Events, Mega-Events and Social Theory: From Durkheim to Marx
[Richard Gruneau and James Compton]
Part II: MegaMediaSport Event Studies
4. 28 Olympic Summers: Historical and Methodological Reflections on Understanding the Olympic Mega-Event
5. 22 Olympic Winters: The Media and the (Non)Making of the Games
6. The FIFA World Cup: Media, Football and the Evolution of a Global Event
[Richard Haynes and Raymond Boyle]
7. The Rugby World Cup Experience: Interrogating the Oscillating Poles of Love and Hate
8. The International Cricket Council World Cup: A "Second Class" MegaMediaSport Event?
[Dominic Malcolm and Thomas Fletcher]
9. Wimbledon: A MegaMediaSport Tradition
[Eileen Kennedy, Laura Hills, and Alistair John]
10. The Masters Golf Tournament: Media Mega-Event and the Environment Meet the Augusta National Syndrome
[Brad Millington and Brian Wilson]
11. Tour de France: Mediatization of Sport and Place
12. The Monaco Grand Prix and the Indianapolis 500: Projecting European Glamour and Global Americana
13. The AFC Asian Cup: Continental Competition, Global Disposition
14. Super Bowl: Mythic Spectacle Revisited
[Michael R. Real and Lawrence A. Wenner]
15. The World Series: Baseball, American Exceptionalism and Media Ritual
[Michael L. Butterworth]
16. The NCAA Basketball Championships: March Madness Goes Global
[Bryan E. Denham]
17. The X Games: Re-imagining Youth and Sport
[Holly Thorpe and Belinda Wheaton]
Lawrence A. Wenner is Von der Ahe Professor of Communication and Ethics in the College of Communication and Fine Arts and the School of Film and Television at Loyola Marymount University, USA. His critical research on mediated sport focuses on gender, race, and commodification. He is editor of the research journal Communication and Sport, author of over 130 scholarly articles and chapters, and has published nine books, including Fallen Sports Heroes, Media and Celebrity Culture.
Andrew C. Billings is the Ronald Reagan Chair of Broadcasting and Director of the Alabama Program in Sports Communication at the University of Alabama, USA. His research frequently focuses on media renderings of sports mega-events, particularly as they relate to issues of gender, ethnicity, and nationality. He is the author and/or editor of 13 books, including Olympic Media: Inside the Biggest Show on Television and over 130 journal articles and book chapters.
"Lawrence Wenner and Andrew Billings have managed to assemble a team of first rate scholars whose expertise in the mega-events examined in the book is beyond doubt. By considering a broad range of sports, this volume illustrates the need for a comparative perspective that pays attention to the diversity of traditions, cultural contexts and politics. Moreover, the contributions make evident that the politics of meaning in the context of mega-events are in flux and that critical scholars might have to revise their theoretical frameworks. Finally, mediatization might fail and/or bring about adverse effects depending on complex interactions of social forces. Thus, any scholar interested in these issues should pay attention to the book. Last but not least, the chapters represent excellent introductions into the mega-events covered." - Henk Erik Meier, Nordic Sport Science Forum, http://idrottsforum.org