Power Play

Power Play: Sport, the Media and Popular Culture

Raymond Boyle
Richard Haynes
Copyright Date: 2009
Pages: 264
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.3366/j.ctt1r20kn
  • Cite this Item
  • Book Info
    Power Play
    Book Description:

    Praise for the first edition:'An excellent book that tries to come to grips with the ever-increasing role of sport in the media as a particular phenomenon of 20th-century popular culture.'European Journal of Communication (2000)'Excellent, well written and informative… of interest and use to a wider constituency.'Times Higher Education Supplement (May 2000)The fully revised and updated version of this classic text examines the link between three key obsessions of the 21st century: the media, sport and popular culture.Gathering new material from around the 2007 Rugby World Cup, the Beijing Olympics and the rise of new sports stars such as boxing's Amir Khan and cycling's Victoria Pendleton, the authors explore a wide range of sports, as well as issues including nationalism, gender, race, political economy and the changing patterns of media sport consumption.For those interested in media and sport the second edition combines new and original material with an overview of the developing field of media sport, and examines the way in which the media has increasingly come to dominate how sport is played, organized and thought about in society. It traces the historical evolution of the relationship between sport and the media and examines the complex business relationships that have grown up around television, sponsors and sport.Covers the following topics: the history of media in sport; television, sport and sponsorship; why sport matters to television; sports stars; sports journalism; fans and the audience; sport in the digital media economy.

    eISBN: 978-0-7486-3594-8
    Subjects: Performing Arts

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-ii)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. iii-iv)
  3. Preface
    (pp. v-ix)
  4. Acknowledgements
    (pp. x-x)
  5. Chapter 1 Sport, the Media and Popular Culture
    (pp. 1-18)

    Without question one of the great passions of the twentieth century has been sport. The opening decade of the twenty-first century suggests that this passion remains unabated. Sport continues to matter to thousands of players and fans across the globe, with differing sports playing a particularly important role in the cultural life of countries and people. While football is the global game, other sports such as baseball occupy a central position in American popular culture, cricket and Aussie Rules in Australian life, Gaelic games in Ireland, cricket and basketball in Caribbean culture, while rugby union is important in constructions of...

  6. Chapter 2 All Our Yesterdays: A History of Media Sport
    (pp. 19-42)

    Mediated versions of sport are one of the key areas of culture which give us a sense of a lived history. One of the particular appeals of sport, for both the media and supporters, is the extent to which the narratives or stories which surround sport act as a bridge between the present and the past. Sporting events need to have a history and a longevity to feel important. In Australia, international cricket is dominated by the Ashes series with England, a competition given extra impetus by the long rivalry between these two countries. As we argue in Chapter 4,...

  7. Chapter 3 A Sporting Triangle: Television, Sport and Sponsorship
    (pp. 43-65)

    Since 2000 the European market in sports sponsorship has risen by 40 per cent to be valued in 2008 as worth in the region of £5 billion (SportBusiness International, January 2008). This growth is all the more remarkable given that a European Union Directive in 2005 signalled an end to tobacco advertising and sponsorship of sport and, as we note below, the tobacco industry had been one of the key sectors driving sports sponsorship since the 1960s. However, the escalation in value of sports-related sponsorship is indicative of other trends that have been shaping media sport in the new century....

  8. Chapter 4 Power Game: Why Sport Matters to Television
    (pp. 66-85)

    Television to all intents and purpose controls large sections of contemporary sport. What we want to do in this chapter is examine some issues centred around the reasons why television is so interested in sport (in some sports more than others) and how this relationship alters what appears on our screens from that which we may witness in sporting stadiums. Part of this involves what Garry Whannel (1992) calls the transformation of sport by television, and we highlight some of these key practices below. However, as was evident from the previous chapter, a central element in the sport–television relationship...

  9. Chapter 5 Who Wants to be a Millionaire? Media Sport and Stardom
    (pp. 86-106)

    The pressures of success in sport are often all too apparent. At the Beijing Olympic Games in 2008 Liu Xiang, the Chinese 110 metres hurdler, defending his Olympic Gold medal from Athens 2004, limped out of the Games before the race began. A stunned stadium and tens of millions of Chinese television viewers were said to be emotionally destroyed and furious at the deception surrounding his injury – a chronic inflammation of his Achilles tendon – which had been covered up by the Chinese Olympic Team, his coach and the athlete himself. Xiang was the carrier of the nation’s Olympic...

  10. Chapter 6 The Race Game: Media Sport, Race and Ethnicity
    (pp. 107-121)

    As a central component in popular culture, sport and its mediated versions operate within a terrain heavily laden with symbolism and metaphor. As we have argued earlier in the book, the issue of representation remains central to any study of media sport. Mediated sport is saturated with ideas, values, images and discourses which at times reflect, construct, naturalize, legitimize, challenge and even reconstitute attitudes which permeate wider society. It should come as no surprise that a cultural form which has narrative and mythology at its core can also become a vehicle for what Cohen (1988) calls ‘rituals of misrecognition’. What...

  11. Chapter 7 Playing the Game: Media Sport and Gender
    (pp. 122-143)

    Sport has always been a sexual battlefield. The issue of gender and the representation of biological difference between the sexes have long been central to our perceptions of sport in society. The media representation of sport is no different and, as this chapter sets out to argue, no analysis of media sport would be complete without an understanding of how patriarchal structures are constructed through media institutions and their coverage of sport.

    Equally, no understanding of how patriarchy is reinforced in capitalist societies can ignore the importance of sport in communicating familiar stereotypes of men and women and their physical...

  12. Chapter 8 Games Across Frontiers: Mediated Sport and National Identity
    (pp. 144-163)

    With its visibility and focus on symbols, winning, competition, partisan fans – and in team games the necessity of collective struggle – few other cultural forms lend themselves as easily as sport to being used as an indicator of certain national characteristics and, by extension, of being representative of a national identity. Examples include examining how the Gaelic games of hurling or football typify Irish character (Humphries, 1996, 2007); contrasting English and Italian cultural life through an analysis of their differing footballing cultures (Vialli and Marcotti, 2007); noting the integral position of football in Scottish culture (Cosgrove, 1998; Giulianotti, 2005a)...

  13. Chapter 9 The Sports Pages: Journalism and Sport
    (pp. 164-183)

    Despite living in a highly visual media culture, the print media remain an important source of information, gossip and insight for the sports fan. Reading about sport remains a pleasure for millions of newspaper readers and during the last decade or so, as media sport has expanded, so to has the interest in sport among newspaper editors keen to find a new audience. This chapter examines how sports journalism is changing in the age of digital media. As the political, economic and cultural importance of the sports industries continues to increase it asks how has journalism reacted to this new...

  14. Chapter 10 Consuming Sport: Fans, Fandom and the Audience
    (pp. 184-203)

    Being a sports fan has become an expensive passion. Much of our attention in this book has focused on the history, political economy and textual analysis of media sport. However, central to both the media and sporting industries is, of course, the fan and/or reader/viewer, the people who consume sport, either in its relatively raw form or in its increasingly mediated form. Part of what we want to do in this chapter is to examine the consumption of mediated sport and attempt to develop an empirically grounded theory of audiences for televised sport. In the latter part of the book...

  15. Chapter 11 Conclusion: Sport in the Digital Age
    (pp. 204-222)

    Sport in the twenty-first century is never dull, it cannot afford to be. Sport is but one offering among the global mediated entertainment industries. Press, radio and television are but three possible outlets of sports information and entertainment. Websites, blogs, podcasts, video streams and various forms of mobile content summon the sports fan in an ever increasing array of services. The kind of information and news around sport is also more varied than ever before. In one particular week in September 2008 the news from English football and the extent of its coverage almost beggared belief. First there was the...

  16. Bibliography
    (pp. 223-239)
  17. Index
    (pp. 240-254)