• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

This vital new handbook marks the development of sports studies as a major new discipline within the social sciences. Edited by the leading sociologist of sport, Eric Dunning, and author of the best selling textbook on sport in the USA, Jay Coakley, it both reflects and richly endorses this new found status. Key aspects of the Handbook include: an inventory of the principal achievements in the field; a guide to the chief conflicts and difficulties in the theory and research process; a rallying point for researchers who are established or new to the field, which sets the agenda for future developments; a resource book for teachers who wish to establish new curricula and develop courses and programmes in the area of sports s

Editors' Introduction
Editors' introduction

In the General Introduction, we introduced the reader to the currently divided and multiparadigmatic character of sociology in general and the sociology of sport in particular. This in many ways fruitful but not in all respects satisfactory state of affairs is illustrated in the present section by means of a series of ‘state-of-the-art’ summaries by leading scholars of:

  • what seven of these competing paradigms/perspectives entail;
  • how the different paradigms have been used sociologically to illuminate aspects of sport;
  • how their advocates view and characterize work in paradigms other than their own and which they often perceive, or at least publicly represent, as inferior rivals.

The seven paradigms, some of them overlapping to a certain degree, are: functionalism, Marxism, cultural studies, feminism, interpretive sociology, figurational ...

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