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  • The Allure of Sports in Western Culture
  • Book
  • Edited by John Zilcosky and Marlo A. Burks
  • 2019
  • Published by: University of Toronto Press
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summary

Whether it is our love of chance and vicarious thrill, our need to release anxiety and aggression, or our appreciation of the arc traced by a ball at a crucial moment – sports draw us in.

The Allure of Sports in Western Culture contributes to contemporary debates about the attraction of sports in the West by providing a historical grounding as well as theoretical perspectives and contextualization. Bringing together the work of literary theorists, historians, and athletes, the volume’s dual emphasis allows us to better understand the historical and ideological reasons for the changing nature of sports’ allure from Ancient Greece and Rome to the modern Olympics. The findings show that allure is shaped by larger forces such as poverty, wealth, and status; changing moral standards; and political and cultural indoctrination. On the other hand, personal and psychological factors play an equally important, if less tangible role: our love for scandal, the seduction of deception and violence, and the physiological intoxication of watching and participating in sports keep us hooked. At the heart of the volume lies the tension between our love of sport and our knowledge of its only barely hidden cruelty, exploitation, and manipulation.

Table of Contents

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  1. Cover
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  1. Half Title Page, Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
  2. pp. i-vi
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. vii-viii
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. ix-x
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  1. Part I: Introduction
  1. Introduction: The Allure of Sports
  2. John Zilcosky
  3. pp. 3-18
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  1. Part II: Theoretical Perspectives
  1. 1 Sports/Allure
  2. Grant Farred
  3. pp. 21-35
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  1. 2 "Allure" Constrained by "Ethics"? How Athletic Events Have Engaged Their Spectators
  2. Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht
  3. pp. 36-52
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  1. Part III: The Ancient World
  1. 3 The Fading Allure of Greek Athletics
  2. Sofie Remijsen
  3. pp. 55-78
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  1. 4 Wrestling, or the Art of Disentangling Bodies
  2. John Zilcosky
  3. pp. 79-118
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  1. 5 The Allure and Ethics of Ancient Aesthetics: Hellenism in the Modern Olympic Movement
  2. Charles Stocking
  3. pp. 119-142
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  1. Part IV: Modern Europe
  1. 6 Attractive or Repugnant? Foot Races in Eighteenth-Century Germany and Britain
  2. Rebekka Von Mallinckrodt
  3. pp. 145-167
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  1. 7 A Well-Trained Community: Gymnastics for the German Nation
  2. Wolf Kittler
  3. pp. 168-201
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  1. 8 Importing a German Kampfsport: The Reception and Practice of Japanese Martial Arts in Interwar Germany
  2. Sarah Panzer
  3. pp. 202-224
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  1. 9 The Ethics and Allure of the Foul in Football
  2. Annette Vowinckel
  3. pp. 225-242
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  1. Part V: Coda
  1. 10 Swimming
  2. Karin Helmstaedt
  3. pp. 245-254
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  1. Contributors
  2. pp. 255-256
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 257-271
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