Learning Culture Through Sports

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On school playgrounds and sporting fields, the words "you throw like a girl" are often used to denigrate particular players. Caricatures on Native Americans continue to fill billboards and sport stadiums, even in our nation's capital, despite the outcry of many American Indian organizations and supporters. These words, images, and the actions associated with them have meanings, and say much about the role of sport in our world and in our lives. Yet sport is rarely examined critically, despite the fact that it is an integral part of our society, and an important force in our lives. While we often complain about certain aspects of sport, rarely are solutions explored. This book provides coaches, educators, parents, and others dealing with students and athletes with an engaging and critical venue by which to examine contemporary issues and controversies surrounding sport. In this text, authors take up the challenges faced by sport in our world, especially as it relates to the lives of young people, providing multiple perspectives on the issues, problems, and possibilities of sport in contemporary American society. The authors represent a variety of positions—scholars, coaches, teachers, athletes, and community members—providing readers with different lenses through which to examine sport and its role in our society. This book helps readers to recognize that sport is not just a game, but also a serious piece of our culture that needs to be examined critically from multiple perspectives.

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Editorial Reviews

The essays are solid, and they challenge the reader to think about and reflect on social constructs and their relationships with sport and society.
Cheng Chen
Young people already know that organized sports—whether they love them or hate them—are an important part of their lives. Sports are a multi-billion dollar business that saturates the mass media; young peoples' clothes are splattered with swooshes and team logos; school activities and annual year books point to sport's centrality in the social life of schools. So it is fitting that Sandra Spickard Prettyman and Brian Lampman have assembled a collection of fascinating articles from some of the top scholars of sport. Teachers and students alike will find that this text, like no other, illuminates previously taken-for-granted, yet centrally important issues in their daily lives.
The essays are solid, and they challenge the reader to think about and reflect on social constructs and their relationships with sport and society.
Jackson Katz
A remarkably useful and versatile contribution to the field of sport sociology that has the added benefit of resonating across a range of disciplines. These essays manage to address themes with direct relevance to fields as diverse as history, education, psychology, gender studies, anthropology, and political science. And they do so without losing focus on what makes this such a necessary collection in the first place: The sheer power of sports culture to shape social constructions of gender, race, sexual orientation, and nationality. But perhaps most impressive is how the editors have managed to explore these dynamics by connecting social structures to people's everyday, lived experiences.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781578863792
  • Publisher: R&L Education
  • Publication date: 3/28/2006
  • Pages: 284
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

Sandra Spickard Prettyman is an assistant professor at the University of Akron where she teaches courses in Cultural Foundations of Education and Qualitative Research. Brian Lampman is a secondary educator at Saline Middle School (MI) where he teaches eighth grade social studies, integrating sports sociology concepts into his course. Brian also coaches the varsity boys' soccer team in Saline.

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Table of Contents

Part 1 Introduction: Why Study Sport? Part 2 Part I: Youth Participation and Sport Chapter 3 Organized Sports for Young People: A 20th Century Invention Chapter 4 An Open Letter to Communities: What Community Leaders Can Do to Improve Youth Sports Chapter 5 Time Out! For Better Sports for Kids Chapter 6 Motivation and Outcomes of Youth Participation and Sports Part 7 Part II: Gender and Sexuality in Sport Chapter 8 Title IX: Past, Present, and Future Chapter 9 Liberties and Lipstick: The Paradox of Cheerleading as Sport Chapter 10 If You Beat Him, You Own Him, He's Your Bitch: Coaches, Language, and Power Chapter 11 Pitching for Equality: Gay Athletes and Homophobia Part 12 Part III: Race and Ethnicity and Sport Chapter 13 The New Racial Stereotypes Chapter 14 Exploring Race with Secondary Students: Developing Critical Media Literacy Chapter 15 Unexpected, Undeserved, Unrewarded...and Undeniable: Sport and Transformation Chapter 16 Making Sense of the American Indian Mascot Issue Part 17 Part IV: Sport and the Media Chapter 18 Songs Sung Red, White, and Blue: Music, Sports, and the Rhetoric of Patriotism Chapter 19 Reconsidering Girl Power: Examining Media Images of Female Athletes Chapter 20 Why Be A "Jackass"?: Media Images of Young White Men In and Out of Sport in New Millenium America Chapter 21 Education, Sport, and Hip-Hop through the Mic of Stuart Scott Part 22 Part V: Sport and Violence Chapter 23 In the Name of Obedience: Overcoming the Damaging Myths about Hazing Chapter 24 Athletes, Role Models, and Criminals: What Do We Make of This Tripatite Mess? Part 25 Part VI: Sport and Schools Chapter 26 The Scholar-Baller Approach: A Cultural Map for Academic Success in America Chapter 27 Rethinking the Role of Sports in Our Schools Chapter 28 The Meaning of Success in Academics and Athletics Part 29 Conclusion: Sport, Society, and Social Justice

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