Assessing the sociology of sport: on globalization and the diffusion of sport

2016-05-09T13:34:33Z (GMT) by Joseph Maguire
On the 50th anniversary of the ISSA and IRSS, a key foundational scholar on the increasing globalization of sport, Joseph Maguire, considers larger questions about the diffusion of sport in light of the tendencies of globalization. The essay considers the ‘current state of play’ about the ‘known dimensions’ of the globalization of sport, commenting on how British and European influences on standards and conventions gave way to North American (in particular, US) influences on increasing professional norms and the embedding of commodification. In considering challenges to the West and to Western scholars of sport and globalization, the Soviet bloc’s sustained challenges to Western dominance are noted, as are non-Western successes in select sports and recent Chinese success accelerated by the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. The essay closes by considering five priorities in future directions for research on sport and globalization, all stemming from inquiry about continuities and changes in the global sport power elite and the ways in which this is both understood and resisted.