The Ball is Round!

Our second session is on Wednesday October 20th,  at 2:15pm East Coast time. We are splitting The Ball is Round: A Global History of Soccer in two halves so in this meeting we are reading and discussing parts 1-3 (pp. 3-479).

Part one: “Ancients and Moderns: Football and the Invention of Modern Sport, from the beginning to 1914”

Part two: “The People’s Game: Football, Empire, and Industry 1870-1934”

Part three: “The Beautiful Game: Football’s Short Twentieth Century, 1934-1974”

Be sure to RSVP to participate via Skype.

I also wanted to share that I have been accepted at THATCamp in Chicago next month, a conference on the digital humanities that brings together academics, librarians, and technology specialists to work collaboratively on individual projects. The Football Scholars Forum will be the ‘paper’ I give at the conference so I look forward to sharing the results after we end the Fall season with Laurent Dubois.

David Goldblatt podcasts – London School of Economics & BBC

Check out October’s author over at the London School of Economics delivering a talk entitled: “This Sporting Planet: global sport and global capitalism”

“Globalisation has seen sport achieve a hitherto unequalled global cultural significance, but it has also left it in thrall to capitalism. Will economic forces continue to shape sport?” Listen or download here

Also check out his four part series on derbies for the BBC World Service Monday Documentary titled “The Power and the Passion”

Cape Town Stadium: Socializing Debt, Privatizing Profits

Peter Alegi has written a follow-up to his 2007 and 2008 articles on South African stadium construction over on his blog. “Since PSL matches in Cape Town rarely draw more than a few thousand spectators, and rugby already has an excellent stadium at Newlands, local taxpayers must now shoulder the World Cup debt burden long into the future.”

Full text: http://www.footballiscominghome.info/the-hosts/cape-town-stadium/

FSF September Opener with Chris Gaffney

Chris Gaffney’s TemplesTemples of the Earthbound Gods led the FSF fall lineup, introducing a geographer’s perspective to our group.

His book establishes the stadium as a unique analytical tool for understanding football, the city, and society. Temples is ambitious in its temporal and thematic scope, incorporating analysis on race, masculinity, and class in a comparative perspective.

Gaffney treated us to anecdotes from his experiences in Brazil and Argentina, including attending a particularly violent Sacachispas match in the Argentine fourth division. (See FSF Forum member David Keyes’s review of a documentary made on Sacachispas FC here) Questions touched on the structure of the book, using Chris’s stadium method elsewhere, and Argentine masculinity. Participants: David Keyes, David Roberts, Alex Galarza, Peter Alegi

The audio from the meeting is available at our recordings page.

Temples Materials

A number of links to share as we warm-up for Chris Gaffney’s Temples of the Earthbound Gods on September 22nd:

Fixtures 2010/2011

The 2010/2011 schedule for FSF has been posted on our new schedule page. The current lineup includes David Goldblatt, Laurent Dubois, and Chris Gaffney, we are very pleased to include them for the fall and spring. Over the course of the season we will be making an extra effort to keep everyone involved and contribute to the site. To do so, I would ask everyone to register, you will be sent an email to confirm and then can change your password from the default one to one of your choosing in your dashboard.

This will enable us all to contribute articles, stories, or media associated with the book or topic of the month. Additionally, we will be posting the recordings of past and future sessions in a members-only page. This is so that we can go back to reference the stimulating conversations we have and to avoid furiously scribbling notes when we would rather listen to our contributors.

We will also be asking for volunteers to write the wrap-up posts after every session from now on. This will be a simple 300 word summary of interesting topics or trends that came up in discussion for the frontpage of the website. I would also ask those of you with web expertise to make suggestions about our page, I am a rank amateur and would benefit tremendously from advice. We need your investment to grow our community and have a sustainable way of keeping this group fresh and exciting!

Congratulations to South Africa for hosting a memorable tournament, to Spain for winning it, and to Peter for providing a valuable piece of scholarship that will serve as a touchstone for years to come. Now it’s August, and as the club season begins anew we can all take our foolish hopes that this season will be different and channel them into a productive year!

2010 World Cup Daily

As Africa prepares to stage its first World Cup, Trevor Nelson travels to South Africa to explore the nation’s passionate relationship with the beautiful game and to confront his own reservations about a country with a history of apartheid.

Peter recommends: “Trevor did a fine job with this documentary piece. One of the best I’ve come across in the media frenzy surrounding the tournament.”

http://www.bbc.co.uk/podcasts/series/5lfd#playepisode6