Full Text

Sports Heroes and Celebrities

Steven Jackson


Extract

The terms hero and celebrity have increasingly become used interchangeably, but they are fundamentally different. According to Daniel Boorstin, “ The celebrity is a person who is known for his well-knownness … The hero was distinguished by his achievement; the celebrity by his image or trademark. The hero created himself; the celebrity is created by the media. The hero is a big man [ sic ]; the celebrity is a big name” (1992: 57, 61). Thus, there are some clear distinctions between the two concepts and the challenge is to ascertain how and why they have become conflated. First, we must examine the meaning, significance and types of heroes and why sport remains such an important site for their identification and development. In turn, we need to understand how changes in wider society have tended to shift attention, status, and rewards from heroes to celebrities. Heroes/heroines have existed throughout human history. From ancient Greece and Rome through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to the twenty-first century, societies and cultures have created, defined, bestowed, and otherwise recognized what is known as a hero ( Klapp 1949 ). In Browne's (1990) view, heroes highlight the potential and possibility of humans by expanding and/or conquering the physical, psychological, social, spiritual, and altruistic limits of human beings. And while there are many cultural arenas in which ... log in or subscribe to read full text

Log In

You are not currently logged-in to Blackwell Reference Online

If your institution has a subscription, you can log in here:

 

     Forgotten your password?

Find out how to subscribe.

Your library does not have access to this title. Please contact your librarian to arrange access.


[ access key 0 : accessibility information including access key list ] [ access key 1 : home page ] [ access key 2 : skip navigation ] [ access key 6 : help ] [ access key 9 : contact us ] [ access key 0 : accessibility statement ]

Blackwell Publishing Home Page

Blackwell Reference Online ® is a Blackwell Publishing Inc. registered trademark
Technology partner: Semantico Ltd.

Blackwell Publishing and its licensors hold the copyright in all material held in Blackwell Reference Online. No material may be resold or published elsewhere without Blackwell Publishing's written consent, save as authorised by a licence with Blackwell Publishing or to the extent required by the applicable law.

Back to Top