Visions of a Better World: Football in the Cameroonian Social Imagination
Examining the social and political significance of football in Cameroon, author Bea Vidacs's anthropological study goes beyond sports. Encompassing the period between 1994 and 2006, the work throws light upon changes in Cameroonians' political attitudes and interpretations of politics and of football as the revolutionary fervor of the early 1990s waned over time and increasingly turned into political disillusionment. Taking the ethos of sport as an ethnographic starting point she addresses such issues as politics, power, powerlessness, identity construction on a local, national and international scale, as well as the meaning of the postcolonial experience both on an individual and national level. Rich in ethnographic detail and command of relevant literature, the study demonstrates how, and with what consequences, Cameroonian football impinges upon and is influenced by local, national and global socio-cultural, economic and political realities.
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1994 World Cup 2006 World Cup African countries African teams Ahidjo Ahmadou Ahidjo Anglophone argues ball Bamileke Bayart beneﬁt Beti Bonjour l’Amérique Brazil broadcast Cameroonian football Canal+ championship Chapter Claude LeRoy Coach Nguidjol colonial commentary competition Côte d’Ivoire deﬁne despite difﬁcult discourse discussed Douala earlier ethnic groups ethos European example Eyoh fact Fécafoot Federation ﬁeld ﬁeldwork FIFA ﬁgures ﬁnal ﬁnd ﬁrst football in Cameroon France France’s Francophone French team goal goalkeeper going government’s head coach Henri Michel identiﬁed identity Indomitable Lions inﬂuence irony Joseph-Antoine Bell match Mbembe and Roitman national team nationalist Ntonfo Nyamnjoh ofﬁce ofﬁcial Omnisports opposition participation Paul Biya people’s play political population postcolonial president provinces qualiﬁed question reality reference reﬂected relationship result seen sense sentiments signiﬁcance social sport stadium Takougang and Krieger team’s Third Division Third World tion Togo victory village watching whites Yaoundé