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Understanding American Sports - Gerald R. Gems

Understanding American Sports

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Since the nineteenth century the USA has served as an international model for business, lifestyle and sporting success. Yet whilst the language of sport seems to be universal, American sports culture remains highly distinctive. Why is this so? How should we understand American sport? What can we learn about America by analyzing its sports culture?

Understanding American Sports offers discussion and critical analysis of the everyday sporting and leisure activities of 'ordinary' Americans as well as the 'big three' (football, baseball, basketball), and elite sports heroes. Throughout the book, the development of American sport is linked to political, social, gender and economic issues, as well as the orientations and cultures of the multilayered American society with its manifold regional, ethnic, social, and gendered diversities.

Topics covered include:

  • American college sports
  • the influence of immigrant populations
  • the unique status of American football
  • the emergence of women's sport in the USA

With co-authors from either side of the Atlantic, Understanding American Sports uses both the outsider's perspective and that of the insider to explain American sports culture. With its extensive use of examples and illustrations, this is an engrossing and informative resource for all students of sports studies and American culture.

"To avoid repetition, the authors offer cross-references and provide references to other resources on some topics. Throughout, boxes give readers snippets of information about significant figures, events, and ideas along with some primary sources." -- Choice, L. A. Heaphy, Kent State University

Part 1 From the Big Game to Health Programs ' The Complexity of Contemporary American Sport CulturePart 2 From Cock Fighting to Nascar ' The Evolution of American SportKey Themes and Chapters within Parts 1 and 2:Immigration, American lifestyles and identities, frontier mentalities and sporting activitiesSport and the Higher Education InstitutionsProfessional sport and the struggle for power Health, gymnastics, physical education and the battle of the systemsReligion, "muscular Christianity" and the role of YMCASport as cradle of ethnicities ' physical cultures of immigrant populations and their impact on American sportMedia impact on shaping American sport, and American's sport consumptionConstructions and functions of sporting heroes in various groups and contextsFrom "play day" to title IX ' women, sport and the construction, management and enactment of genderThe segregation and integration of the races in sport, and meanings for blackness and whitenessSporting Spaces ' contested terrains, arenas and markets, places of remembrance

ISBN: 9780415443647
ISBN-10: 0415443644
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 456
Published: 22nd July 2009
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 24.6 x 17.4  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.93
Edition Number: 1