The mention of sport mega-events conjures up images and memories of London 2012 or anticipation of FIFA 2014, the 2016 Rio Olympics and beyond. Indeed, the expanding annual calendar of sport mega-events, both in terms of the bidding process and the actual hosting of the event means that there is rarely time for considered reflection. This is particularly true within the context of neo-liberalism and an obsession with creating world class ‘sporting’ cities that are propelled by state-private promotional discourses that often silence oppositional voices.
This edited collection focuses on Rugby World Cup 2011 in order to examine the contested terrain of one particular sport mega-event with respect to its economic, political and cultural impact both locally and globally. As an event, the 2011 Rugby World Cup was unique in many ways but perhaps the most notable are the nation’s remote geographic location and at just over four million people – its small population. This anthology addresses how the Rugby World Cup has changed since its inception in 1987 including a major shift in the globalisation of the game, professionalization, player migration and television and sponsorship rights. The core of the anthology explores how the event impacted on various segments of New Zealand society: from the state to regions and individual citizens. Collectively the implications are relevant for all who are interested in sport mega-events whether it is from a political, economic, scholarly or policy perspective.
This book was published a sa special issue of Sport and Society.
1. Rugby World Cup 2011: sport mega-events between the global and the local 2. Definitely maybe: continuity and change in the Rugby World Cup 3. Collective identity and contested allegiance: a case of migrant professional Fijian rugby players 4. Rugby World Cup 2011: sport mega-events and the contested terrain of space, bodies and commodities 5. (Not) a stadium of four million: speaking back to dominant discourses of the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand 6. The culture of alcohol sponsorship during the 2011 Rugby World Cup: an (auto)ethnographic and (con)textual analysis 7. Playing the shell game: the Faustian bargain for Dunedin’s stadium
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.