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The Social Significance of Sports

  • Economics
  • Political Science


The sociology of sport has a history of academic marginalisation: for being a sociological study of an activity prioritised for its physical, rather than socio-cultural attributes; and for being a study of an area of life associated with ‘leisure’ and perceived by many to lack real social significance. In the early years, the fledgling discipline of sport studies/sport science sought legitimacy by adopting the methods and theories of the positivist and physical sciences – initially overlooking the historical, social, economic and political features of sporting cultures. It is only relatively recently that the sociology of sport slowly emerged as an area deemed worthy of serious scholarly attention.

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