Sports Reflection

Sports Reflection

Sports Reflection

According to Sperber (2000), sporting events seek to celebrate the physical and body culture of participating individuals. However, they note that from the ancient civilization of the Greek and the Romans, sporting events have fallen victim to ideological and political motives. It can be noted that the cultural/religious norms or attitudes regarding sports have changed from the Victorian Age until now. Such adverse influential forces have also been observed to affect sporting activities in Modern day Europe, Westerner societies, and even the developing non-Western states(Sperber 21).When we analyze by cultural studies which consists of popular music, movies, television, pulp fiction, theme parks, etc, professional sport plays a considerable role in shaping the politics and identities comprising the cultural arena. Many countries as well as cultural studies, time and again, portray that sports is instrumental in promoting popular culture (Scambler 31). It is considered that as an instance of popular culture. Sport is said to be a central dimension of popular experience and collective memory.

In today’s modern world view of sports, advocates of global sporting spectacles justify it on the basis of it being a unifying factor that brings together common and shared global perceptions of identity, culture and political ideologies. Two of the most common global sporting spectacles historically and in modern day are the Olympic Games, and the World Cup Finals (soccer), both of which are held once in four years, and in decentralized venues all over the world. Both spectacles contribute and patently look at the political, cultural, economic, and ideological influences that frame these events (Quinn 45). Ideally, such global sporting events such as the Olympics and the World Cup are used to make available a foundation for the articulation of well-established and dominant political ideologies, encourage persisting senses of national identity and also hoisting the cultural identity.

I believe that sports operate as seismographs of social and cultural changes within social units of any size, from an individual level to a national one. Sports are also strongly linked to the prevailing lifestyles in modern societies, which are prominently shaped by identity, culture and the environment with which we interact with, and can even replace a function of religions by defining a particular set and hierarchical of values, such as peace, love and unity(Joke 43). However, sports are also seen to portray explicit political dimensions. Sperber argues that it is the culture and politics in sports that have led many nations to actively participate in global sporting events (Sperber 29). This observation is conclusive since the sporting events have been politicized and marked with political rivalry over bidding and hosting issues, such as the 2011 World Cup bids, and corruption.

Having been a spectator of various sporting events as an IU undergraduate, I can comfortable support the claims stated earlier as I have witnessed firsthand the dynamic nature of sports and how sports have various cultural and social implications in people lives. It can thus be concluded that there is a distinct association of sport with culture and how it (sport) complements culture(Scambler 31). The convergence of athletes on common ground in major sporting spectacles is facilitated in the commonality with which people all over the world identify themselves, and the similar ideologies they share regarding identity and culture(Scambler 29). The liberalization of the sporting games that I have witnessed and their universality is also an indicator that cultural differences do not limit cultural integration.

Works Cited

Joke, Ernst. Sports and Culture. Bethesda, MD: The Library, 1988.

Quinn, Kevin G. Sports and Their Fans: The History, Economics and Culture of the Relationship between Spectator and Sport. Jefferson, N.C: McFarland, 2009. Print.

Scambler, Graham. Sport and Society: History, Power and Culture. Maidenhead, England: Open University Press, 2005. Internet resource

Sperber, Murray A. Beer and Circus: How Big-Time College Sports Is Crippling Undergraduate Education. New York: H. Holt, 2000. Print.