Whose game is this? An overview at the role of football in the construction of national identity

  • Ivan Đorđević The Institute of Ethnography SASA Belgrade
Keywords:
football, national identity, media discourse, Western Europe

Abstract

In this paper I will consider the ways in which national identity is constructed through football, by analyzing different case studies foremost in the countries of Western Europe which are, in public narratives, signified as “developed”. I will attempt to point out the fact that, despite the weakening of the prerogative of the nation-state, the identity which refers to such a state is still strong, and that football is one of those cultural elements though which such identification is encouraged and supported. On the other hand, through analyzing the “nation building” through football project in countries which, supposedly represent the ideal for a transitional country like Serbia, in both the economic and political sense, it is my intent to point out that the ideology of nationalism and its instrumentalization in the media, such as that given in the examples, is by no means locally specific nor connected to so-called “insufficiently modernized societies”, where this term, in itself has the ideological weight in context – that we could thus refer to certain societies as “enough” or “completely” modernized. On the contrary, these models, more or less, function the same way everywhere, only they are historically determined, and greatly dependent on momentary power relations, or that which the dominant discourse in continual hegemonic struggles defines as the desirable image of “nation”, “economy” or anything else.

Downloads

Download data is not yet available.

References

Anderson, Benedict R. O'G. 1991. Imagined communities : reflections on the origin and spread of nationalism. Rev. and extended ed. London - New York: Verso.
Auge, Marc. 1998. "’Un ethnologue au Mondial’." Le Monde diplomatique.
Barker, Chris. 2000. Cultural studies : theory and practice. London: SAGE.
Barth, Fredrik. 1969. Ethnic groups and boundaries. The social organization of culture difference. (Results of a symposium held at the University of Bergen, 23rd to 26th February 1967.), Scandinavian university books. Bergen, London: Universitetsforlaget; Allen & Unwin.
Bilig, Majkl. 2009. Banalni nacionalizam. Beograd: XX Vek.
Bishop, Hywel, and Adam Jaworski. 2003. "‘We beat ’em’: nationalism and the hegemony of homogeneity in the British press reportage of Germany versus England during Euro 2000." Discourse & Society no. 14 (3):243-271.
Brookes, Rod. 1999. "Newspapers and national identity: the BSE/CJD crisis and the British press." Media, Culture & Society no. 21:247-263.
Carrard, Philippe. 2002. "'L'Equipe de France du monde': sport and national identity." French Cultural Studies no. 13:65-82.
Castells, Manuel. 2009. The Power of Identity. Oxford: Wiley-Blackwell.
Clay Large, David. 2007. Nazi Games: The Olympics of 1936. New York: W.W. Norton.
Dauncey, Hugh, and Geoff Hare. 2000. "World Cup France '98. Metaphors, Meanings and Values." International Review for the Sociology of Sport no. 35 (3):331-347.
Đorđević, Ivan. 2009. "Umeju li antropolozi da igraju fudbal? Sport i identitet u savremenoj Srbiji." Antropologija no. 9:89-103.
Fairclough, Norman. 1995. Media Discourse. London: Edward Arnold.
Fukuyama, Francis. 1992. The end of history and the last man. New York, Toronto: Free Press ; Maxwell Macmillan Canada ; Maxwell Macmillan International.
Gordon, Robert S. C., and John London. 2006. "Italy 1934: Football and Fascism." In National identity and global sports events, edited by Alan Tomlinson and Christopher Young. Albany: State University of New York Press.
Maguire, Joseph A., and Emma Poulton. 1999. "European identity politics in Euro 96: Invented traditions and national habitus codes." International Review for the Sociology of Sport no. 34 (1):17-29.
Maguire, Joseph, Emma Poulton, and Catherine Possamai. 1999. "Weltkrieg III?: Media Coverage of England Versus Germany in Euro 96." Journal of Sport & Social Issues no. 23 (4):439-454.
Martin, Simon. 2004. Football and Fascism: The National Game under Mussolini New York: Berg.
Miller, Toby, Geoff Lawrence, Jim McKay, and David Rowe. 2001. Globalization and sport — Playing the world. London: SAGE.
Ože, Mark. 2003. Varljivi kraj stoleća. Beograd: XX Vek.
Radović, Srđan. 2013. Grad kao tekst. Beograd: XX Vek.
Rorty, Richard. 1989. Contingency, irony, and solidarity. Cambridge ; New York: Cambridge University Press.
Rowe, D., J. Mckay, and T. Miller. 2002. "Come Together: Sport, Nationalism, and the Media Image." In Mediasport, edited by L.A. Wenner and I.N.I. NetLibrary, 119-133. London: Routledge.
Silverman, Maxim. 2002. Deconstructing the Nation: Immigration, Racism and Citizenship in Modern France. London: Routledge.
Smith, D. Anthony. 2009. Nationalism, Key Concepts. Cambridge: Polity Press.
Tomlinson, Alan, and Christopher Young. 2006. "Culture, Politics, and Spectacle in the Global Sports Event — An Introduction." In National identity and global sports events, edited by Alan Tomlinson and Christopher Young. Albany: State University of New York Press.
van Dijk, T.A. 1988. News as Discourse. Hillsdale, New Jersey: Erlbaum.
Whannel, Garry. 2008. Blowing the Whistle, Revisited. New York: Routledge.
Woodward, Kathryn. 1997. "Concepts of Identity and Difference." In Identity and Difference, edited by Kathryn Woodward. London: SAGE.
Ђорђевић, Иван. 2006. "Спорт и национални идентитет. Фудбалска прича 'непостојеће нације'." Antropologija no. 1:22-34.
Прелић, Младена. 2003. "Етнички идентитет - проблеми теоријског одређења." In Традиционално и савремено у култури Срба, edited by Драгана Радојичић. Београд: Етнографски институт САНУ.
Published
2014-02-25
How to Cite
Đorđević, Ivan. 2014. “Whose Game Is This? An Overview at the Role of Football in the Construction of National Identity”. Issues in Ethnology and Anthropology 9 (1), 83-103. https://doi.org/https://doi.org/10.21301/eap.v9i1.5.