Over the past three decades there has been widespread commitment to an understanding that sport can play a key role in community development. The role of sport within communities has been promoted with a wide range of goals such as environmental considerations, encouragement of civic pride, enhancement of confidence and self-esteem and development of social cohesion as well as the fostering of a fit and healthy workforce.
To address these issues, a number of programmes have been funded and supported to develop the role of sport in communities worldwide and to increase participation and access to sport and physical activities in rural areas. In addition we are witnessing the development of new sports communities through social media such as Facebook and My Space.
The concern is that we need to revisit the concept of ‘community and sport’ and to investigate the current understanding of these terms in view of the evolving role of sport in a range of national settings. This book will present the platform upon which this process can be undertaken and offers a fundamental re-evaluation of the relationship that currently exists between sport and communities throughout selected parts of the world.
This book was previously published as a special issue of Sport in Society.
1. Sport and communities: an introduction 2. Sport, community involvement and social support 3. How do youth sports facilitate the creation of parental social ties? 4. Working together through sport? Local authority provision for ethnic minorities in the UK 5. What does commitment mean to volunteers in youth sport organizations? 6. The mobilizing effects and health benefits of proximity sport facilities: urban andvenvironmental analysis of the Bleu, Blanc, Bouge project and Montreal North’s outdoor rink 7. Sport and community integration in Northern Ireland 8. Women’s toplessness on the Red Mile, Calgary, May – June 2004 9. Volunteer roles, involvement and commitment in voluntary sport organizations: evidence of core and peripheral volunteers 10. Epilogue: the not-so-hidden complexity of the sport-community connection
The social, cultural (including media) and political study of sport is an expanding area of scholarship and related research. While this area has been well served by the Sport in the Global Society series, the surge in quality scholarship over the last few years has necessitated the creation of Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives. The series will publish the work of leading scholars in fields as diverse as sociology, cultural studies, media studies, gender studies, cultural geography and history, political science and political economy. If the social and cultural study of sport is to receive the scholarly attention and readership it warrants, a cross-disciplinary series dedicated to taking sport beyond the narrow confines of physical education and sport science academic domains is necessary. Sport in the Global Society: Contemporary Perspectives will answer this need.