The Anthropology of Sport: An Introduction

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Greenwood Publishing Group, 1995 - 306 páginas


Anyone who reads the newspaper, watches television, or listens to casual conversation on the street is aware of the ubiquitous nature of sport. It is everywhere. It flavors our national culture and permeates every corner of our daily lives. Sport in America, as in many countries, is big business, popular culture, and potent politics. It has become its own medium of communication and has important ramifications for international and multicultural relationships. There is no topic that should be of greater interest to social science in general and anthropology in particular than the study of human sport. This volume presents theory, history, practice, and institution of human sport.

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Página 31 - Civilization, taken in its wide ethnographic sense, is that complex whole which includes knowledge, belief, art, morals, law, custom, and any other capabilities and habits acquired by man as a member of society.
Página 43 - He experiences it as a unified flowing from one moment to the next, in which he is in control of his actions, and in which there is little distinction between self and environment, between stimulus and response, or between past, present, and future.
Página 122 - ... an uncompromising sense of honor and justice, intense personal loyalties — not only are not admired but are heartily deplored. The woman who cleaves to her husband through misfortune and family quarrels, the man who speaks his mind where flattery would be much more comfortable, the man, above all, who thirsts for power or knowledge, who wishes to be, as they scornfully phrase it, "a leader of his people," receives nothing but censure and will very likely be persecuted for sorcery.
Página 68 - We find magic wherever the elements of chance and accident and the emotional play between hope and fear have a wide and extensive range. We do not find magic wherever the pursuit is certain, reliable, and well under the control of rational methods and technological processes. Further, we find magic where the element of danger is conspicuous.
Página 239 - For the purpose of this study, it will provisionally be taken to mean a struggle over values and claims to scarce status, power and resources in which the aims of the opponents are to neutralize, injure or eliminate their rivals.
Página 40 - Summing up the formal characteristics of play, we might call it a free activity standing quite consciously outside 'ordinary' life as being 'not serious,' but at the same time absorbing the player intensely and utterly . It is an activity connected with no material interest, and no profit can be gained by it.
Página 76 - The culture of a people is an ensemble of texts, themselves ensembles which the anthropologist strains to read over the shoulders of those to whom they properly belong.
Página 149 - Then the native strikes with all his strength on the right cheek and in his turn inclines his head awaiting the stranger's blow. While this is going on the other men are playing at ball and singing. Thus they continue until one of the combatants is vanquished.
Página 40 - The spirit of playful competition is, as a social impulse, older than culture itself and pervades all life like a veritable ferment. Ritual grew up in sacred play; poetry was born in play and nourished on play; music and dancing were pure play.
Página 42 - I saw two young monkeys playing, ie engaged in an interactive sequence of which the unit action or signals were similar to but not the same as those of combat. It was evident, even to the human observer, that the sequence as a whole was not combat, and evident to the human observer that to the participant monkeys this was "not combat.

Acerca del autor (1995)

KENDALL BLANCHARD is Professor of Anthropology and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Lamar University. He is the author of six books, including The Mississippi Choctaws at Play: The Serious Side of Leisure (1981).

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