The Global Playing Field: A Perspective on Sports and Transnational History

Saturday, January 5, 2019: 1:30 PM
Stevens C-5 (Hilton Chicago)
Timothy Dean Draper, Waubonsee Community College
The juncture of sports history and transnational historiography offers an intriguing view of the discipline and its often contradictory perspectives. Traditionally, a marginalized subfield, contemporary sports and athletic history has emerged in recent year to offer key insights into among other issues national identities, sex and gender construction, economic development, political legitimacy, and childhood and adolescence. While such studies are represented among local and national histories, they along with other areas of research are quite applicable to transnational analysis. Global events such as the Summer and Winter Olympics and the World Cup have historically brought global attention to not only the competitive but also socio-cultural realities of sports and athletics. However, such issues as international relations, immigration, corporate capital, gender equity, and socioeconomic accessibility relate to the rise of sports as both a consumer-driven enterprise and health and wellness area of the human condition. This presentation explores ways in which the history of sports, especially those developed organizationally on the regional and national level, have increasingly become a point of analytical focus for historians interested in viewing the past in transnational terms and how to bring such a perspective into the undergraduate classroom.
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