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Globalization, Sport and

Joseph Maguire

Subject Sociology of Leisure and Tourism » Sociology of Sport

Key-Topics globalization

DOI: 10.1111/b.9781405124331.2007.x


Modern sport is bound up in a global network of interdependency chains that are marked by uneven power relations. Consider the consumption of sports events and leisure clothing. People across the globe regularly view satellite broadcasts of English Premier League and European Champions League matches. In these games the best players drawn from Europe, South America, and Africa perform. The players use equipment – boots, balls, clothing, etc. – that are designed in the West, financed by multinational corporations such as Adidas and Nike and hand-stitched, in the case of soccer balls, in Asia using, in part, child labor. This equipment is then sold, at significant profit, to a mass market in North America and Europe. Several transnational corporations are involved in the production and consumption phases of global soccer – some of whom own the media companies and have, as in the case of Sky TV, shareholdings in the soccer clubs they screen as part of what sociologists term the “global media-sport complex.” The sport/leisure-wear industry is an example of how people's consumption of cultural goods is bound up with global processes. As a fashion item, the wearing of sports footwear has become an integral feature of urban lifestyles and consumer culture. One premier brand is Nike. The purchase and display of Nike footwear by soccer players are but the final stages in a “dynamic network” ... log in or subscribe to read full text

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