Cover

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Title Page, Series Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface

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pp. ix-xiv

The representation of black athletes has its roots in how blackness itself has been constructed over time. Indeed, we can go back to the formation of our modern conceptions of race—their development through the intensification of the Atlantic slave trade—and find similar...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xv-xvi

A number of people made this book possible. First, to my wife, Sarah, who (through her hatred of Illinois winters) pushed me to finish my dissertation and find a “real” job: It’s great not to be a graduate student anymore and steadily accomplishing everything I want in life...

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Introduction: Black African Immigration to the West

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pp. 1-26

Popular sport often serves as one of the first cultural spaces in which recent immigrants can gain widespread social recognition within their host countries. As sport globalizes a rising number of athletes are migrating to fill the talent needs of various sports around the world...

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1. Race and Sport: Situating the Black African Athlete

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pp. 27-47

The representation of black athletes has its roots in how blackness itself has been constructed over time. Indeed, we can go back to the formation of our modern conceptions of race—their development through the intensification of the Atlantic slave trade—and find similar...

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2. Everyday Othering: Boundary Making and Maintenance

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pp. 48-71

Casual discourse and conversation can often tell us a great deal about the values of society and how that society views minorities and foreigners. Hence I begin here with what can be called the mundane practices of Othering in Western media. These everyday discursive...

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3. Model Minorities: Origin Stories, Hard Workers, and Humanitarians

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pp. 72-96

In the previous chapter I discussed the mundane processes of boundary making and maintenance and how they link to more explicit, often stereotypical, forms of Othering. In this chapter I will go further in examining specific discourses that elevate either the personality of the...

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4. “Bad” Blacks: Contingent Acceptance and Essentialized Blackness

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pp. 97-123

As Paul Gilroy tells us, “In this world of overdetermined racial signs, an outstandingly good but temperamental natural athlete is exactly what we would expect a savage African to become.”1 The praise and acceptance in Western society that I documented in the previous...

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5. Immigrant Reception: Nationalism, Identity, Politics, and Resistance

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pp. 124-154

In order to better understand the full complexity of the immigrant experience it becomes necessary to examine the politics and social dynamics surrounding the construction of immigrant identities. Identity construction among black immigrant populations is an attempt to...

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6. The Diasporic Athlete: Blackness and Meaning in the African Diaspora

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pp. 155-181

So far I have been primarily concerned with representations of black African migrant athletes who maintain a kind of transnational consistency between media in Western societies. I have argued that black African migrant athletes are meant, first and foremost, to mean something...

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7. The Sporting Migrant: Antiblack Racism and the Foreign Other

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pp. 182-190

Paul Gilroy has continually tried to compel us to think “beyond” race, not because we are actually “beyond race” but because our conceptions of race are hurtful to our progress as human beings on this planet. His innovative work in Against Race implores us, in the end...

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Appendix A: Methodology and Data-Gathering Procedures

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pp. 191-200

Discourse analysis is a broad methodological approach to research, employing a variety of methods or techniques to analyze discourse, whether it is in conversational, textual, or any other form. Discourse refers to “a particular way of talking about or understanding the world...

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Appendix B: Individuals in the Study

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pp. 201-210

While the athletes I focus on are well accomplished in their respective sports, I am aware that not every reader may be familiar with them. Through the course of this research I have sometimes felt that I was reliving the career of each athlete, witnessing their highs and...

Notes

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pp. 211-226

Bibliography

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pp. 227-238

Index

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pp. 239-253