Body Politic: The Great American Sports Machine

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Simon and Schuster, May 11, 2010 - Sports & Recreation - 208 pages
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In Body Politic, David Shields looks at contemporary America and its mythology through the lens of professional and college sports. The result is an unusually insightful and provocative book about an empire in denial. Shields relentlessly examines the way we tell our sports stories (both fictional and nonfictional), considers the kinds of athletes we choose as heroes, and delineates the lessons and values we glean from sports. He explores the intricate and telling relationships between players and coaches, black and white players, immigrant and native players, male and female players, players and broadcasters, players and fans, and players and advertisers. In the process, he shows us the stories we Americans tell ourselves about the kind of people we believe ourselves to be.
 

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Contents

The Wound and the
1
On the Need to Connect with Something
23
Fairy Tale of Reinvention and Escape
40
Words Cant Begin to Describe
55
Heaven Is a Playground
65
History of America 34
83
A Little Euro TrashTalk
116
Matsui Among the Americans
136
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About the author (2010)

David Shields is the author of seven previous books, including Black Planet: Facing Race During an NBA Season, a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award; Remote: Reflections on Life in the Shadow of Celebrity, winner of the PEN/Revson Award; and Dead Languages: A Novel, winner of the Governor's Writers Award of the State of Washington.

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