TOWARD A THANATOLOGY OF OLYMPIC STADIUMS

TOWARD A THANATOLOGY OF OLYMPIC STADIUMS

Journal

  • Journal title: Olimpianos - Journal of Olympic Studies
  • ISSN: 2526-6314 (online)
  • Publisher: Centro de Estudos Socioculturais do Movimento Humano (CESC) Cidade Universitária
  • Country of publisher: brazil
  • Date added to EuroPub: 2019/May/30

Subject and more

  • LCC Subject Category: Social Sciences, Sports and Recreation, Humanities
  • Publisher's keywords: Stadium; Demolition; Death; Narrative; Icon
  • Language of fulltext: english, portuguese, spanish, catalan
  • Full-text formats available: PDF

AUTHORS

    Kimberly S. Schimmel, C. Lee Harrington, Ashley Beidle

EDITORIAL INFORMATION

FULL TEXT

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ABSTRACT

The sociology of sport has over a 30-year history of developing a deeper understanding of urban life by conceptualizing the ways in which sport, both as a dominant cultural form, and as the infrastructure that houses it, is connected to the construct of community and identity. Olympic stadiums, for example, are projected as symbols of global urban status, focal points for local collective identity, and as verification of urban regeneration success –that is, in a sense, as the concrete embodiment of the Olympic Dream. So, what happens when an Olympic stadium is abandoned or destroyed? What happens when an Olympic stadium dies? The purpose of this essay is to provoke thought about the role and meaning of Olympic stadium death. We draw upon media studies, gerontological, and thanatological literature to explore how former Olympic stadiums are presented in global media reports. Our discussion is prompted by our exploratory research examining local newspaper discourse surrounding the destruction of 15 major US sport stadiums since 2000. Situated in the notion that cultural objects have a biography of a life span much as individuals do, we ultimately call for a thanatology of sports stadiums.

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