Queen's University Sociology of Sport Conference

Just returned from the Queen's University Sociology of Sport Conference yesterday and wanted to post a few thoughts. I was there to discuss a synthesis of the recent ideas here on sportsBabel in a paper titled Questioning Sport and Deleuzian Societies of Control.

Here is a list of the other presentations:

  • Laura Misener, University of Alberta: Sporting Events and Developing Social Capital
  • Katie MacPherson, University of Windsor: Exploring the Influence of Gender and Relationship Building on Athletic Fundraising in NSOs
  • Simon Darnell, University of Toronto: Empowerment through Policy:
    An Analysis of Two International Sport Development Programs
  • Linnet Fawcett, Concordia University: Recreational Rink Culture and the Swaggering Midlife Female Trick-skater
  • Michele Donnelly, University of Maryland: Up close and Personal With a ?Wild Woman?: Interviewing Greta Gaines
  • Nicole Neverson, McMaster University: TSN, Women?s Sport, and Canadian Television
  • Ryan White, University of Maryland: Portraying America the American Way
  • Amanda Foran, Queen?s University: Sports Illustrated Pre and Post 9/11

Dr. Mary McDonald of Miami University, the president of NASSS, presented the Donald Macintosh Memorial Lecture in a paper titled The Politics of Visibility and the Queer Play of the WNBA and Late Capitalism. I am not very familiar with identity politics/cultural studies literature to begin with, yet Dr. McDonald's talk offered numerous footholds in remaining accessible to a naif such as myself.

A few of the presentations were early-stage findings, so I will focus my discussion on works that were a little more complete.

Laura's work is part of a massive project on the role of sport in civic regeneration strategies for so-called "aspirational cities," and will be very interesting when complete.

I usually get tired as soon as I hear the word "methodology" as the topic for a presentation, but Michele kept things interesting as she asked sophisticated questions at such an early stage of her career about the role of her personal politics in research.

Ryan and Amanda presented really neat work on America and Americanism in sport, tying these concepts both to the global product that is being exported and the military culture of the nation before and after September 11, 2001. Of course, with my interest in the global export of NFL football, I found these papers particularly relevant.

Finally, Linnet is just a pleasure to hear speak. This is the second time we have presented together, and both times the sheer joy of her narrative has more than compensated for my dystopic ramblings. Her style is playful without sacrificing theory or rigour, and I do hope she gets her own blog soon so that other people can share in the benefits of her writings.

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