Events dominate our screens, our lives, and increasingly global geopolitics. Analysis of events and their management has remained rooted in leisure and management studies - until now. This break-through book provides an introduction to event management, while also situating events in questions of power and social control.

Rojek powerfully argues that events are essential elements in corporate-state partnerships of ‘invisible government’ that have revived the romance of charity as to form illusory communities, while cloaking power imbalances and social inequalities. Events are moving politics from the old idea of ‘the personal is political’ to the new, more seductive notion that ‘representation is resistance’. Wielding rich case studies from the World Cup and the Olympics to Live Aid, Burning Man and Mardi Gras, Rojek presents a dazzlingly original account of communication power, social ordering and control. It is essential reading in media & communication studies and across the social sciences.

Why are We Drawn to Events?

Why are we drawn to events?

That there is a buzz about events and event management can scarcely be doubted. Live Aid (1985) was a global event that generated enormous media coverage and, for many people, remains revered as truly life-changing. Event management is regularly described by advocates as ‘vibrant’, ‘relevant’ and ‘essential’ to ‘contemporary life’ (Arcodia and Reid, 2004: 5; Bowdin et al., 2011). Events automatically signify vigour, excitement and revitalisation. Gallup (1988: xii), writing of the local and national impact of the Salzburg Arts Festival, documents a variety of observed and purported event-related social and psychological features:

The Festival lasts for about five weeks a year, roughly between the end of July and the end of August. The quiet ...

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