Essays on Sport History and Sport Mythology
Sport has always been a legitimate focus for human energy, and in the last fifteen years it has emerged as a legitimate focus for scholarly energy as well. In this interdisciplinary overview of the study of sport, sociology, intellectual history, psychology, anthropology, and literature are brought to bear in seeking new understanding of the role and significance of sport in society. Some of the conclusions will be controversial or even disturbing, and the breadth of the volume clearly demonstrates that sport history is not merely a hobby.
As Jack W. Berryman notes in the introduction to the volume: “Each essay, in some distinctive manner, confronts the problem of general preconceptions and misconceptions in the study of sport history. The authors ask fundamental questions: what is sport, what is its significance over time, and how can sport be studied effectively?” Donald G. Kyle opens the questions with an examination of the myth of the decline of ancient Greek sport. Stephen Hardy proposes a new model for the interpretation of both early and modern sport. Steven A. Riess questions the historicity of the myth of social mobility through sport in America. Richard D. Mandell explains the history of theoretically profound and earnest modern criticism of sport. Allen Guttmann demythologizes the relationship between erotic impulses and sport.
This serious and timely study of sport aids in the reevaluation of many popular beliefs and traditional scholarly interpretations concerning sport in various ages and cultures. It offers much of value to all those interested in contemplating the nature and history of the phenomenon of sport.
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Adelman American Sports Aristophanes Association athleticism ball baseball players basketball became beneﬁts blue-collar boxers boxing career century Chadwick champion classical clubs coaches competition culture decline early eros erotic essay ﬁeld ﬁghters ﬁgure ﬁnd ﬁne ﬁrst ﬁve Foot Race football players Gardiner Gardiner’s Gardner GASF German Greek athletics Greek sport Guttmann Hellenic Henry Chadwick historians ideal ideology inﬂuence Jack Scott journal major league Major League Baseball modern sport moral myth National NFL players Occupational Olympia Olympic Games origins Oxford Pankration Paul Governali percent Phayllus Philostratus physical education play players active profes Professional Baseball Professional Football professional sports regimen Riess ritual rules salaries Sansone scientiﬁc Senda Berenson sexual signiﬁcant Smith College social mobility society Spalding speciﬁc spectators sport history Sportgeist sports criticism sports journalism structure Sullivan tion University Press Victorian victory Walter Camp women Wrestling Wrestling II York young youth