DepositRhizomatic Forces in Sports

In 2016, Colin Kaepernick started kneeling for the national anthem before playing in NFL games. Football fans across the country repeated that this was not the correct time or place for his actions. What they failed to realize, however, was that sports are not just about the game. Many people watch sports to escape from the chaos of the modern world. However, as long as sports have been played, the societal issues aren’t hidden by sports, but instead sports magnify the problems that players and viewers are going through. From coming out as LGBT to betting scandals to protesting on the field, these rhizomatic influences practically fill the stadium and directly influence the game. All aspects of society; whether they be political, social or economic, impact all aspects of life regardless of how polarizing or politically uninclined they may seem. Sports is not an excuse to be superficial or blissfully ignorant to how these things impact society and vise-versa.

DepositSport Participation of LGBT and Their Allies in Nagoya: Frequency, gender division, and an alternative arena

This paper attempts to address the problems and possibilities in the current situation of LGBT people’s sport participation in Japan, with a special focus on transgender athletes. By analysing qualitative data collected at a LGBT pride parade, we aim to investigate the frequency of sport participation by transgender athletes as well as their preferred and obligatory gender on participating in competitive sport events. Also, the recognition rate of Gay Games was measured in search of an alternative sporting arena for Japanese LGBT people. Results show that gender preference and experience of competitive sports differ among transgender people; however, some do seem to feel anxious or hesitant when participating. The community seems to expect respect and recognition towards gender/sexual diversity and personal preferences as well as inherent physical differences from sport events, but the ideal method to achieve this in terms of competitive sport does not appear to be unified. The majority of the respondents, especially those who participate in competitive sports and are interested in the Olympics, seemed attracted by the quality of the Gay Games despite its low recognition rate, which may signify a possible alternative temporary solution for the current sporting environment.

DepositThinking in Stats: A Study of Sports Writing

In the world of writing, many aspects of it are studied through different lenses. These lenses create various aspects for the readers to understand and think further about the topic of writing. However, the one that is hardly looked at is the realm of sports journalism. Sports journalists, writers, correspondents all play a role in writing the Friday night football game using their own techniques to record the stats (pen and pencil primarily), sending out updates via social media (Twitter), and implementing those statistics into the story printed in the morning paper or sent out to the companies’ various social media accounts. Technology has certainly played a role in expanding the mediums that a sports story can be accessed aside from the print edition of the newspaper. These avenues are great for reaching a more diverse age group than those who read the morning newspaper, but these avenues come at the expense of the shrinking attention spans and public commentary. Yet with technology rapidly changing and adapting to meet the current trends, so too does the writing. This change should open up the possibility on writing studies to meet this transference from pen and paper to a key board and blank word document. The culmination of all of these factors leads to the point that sports writing and other genres of writing should have its own curriculum among the likes of Biology, Business, or Nursing. This study opens the audience to the prospect that there is more to writing of any kind than what people think.

DepositThe Triangle of Empire: Sport, Religion, and Imperialism in Puerto Rico’s YMCA, 1898–1926

This article studies the intersection of sport, religion, and imperialism through the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA) as an extension of United States expansion into Puerto Rico after the Spanish American War of 1898. The YMCA’s emphasis on “muscular Christianity” and sports made it attractive to some locals who welcomed this feature of U.S. Americanization. This article seeks to challenge notions of imperialism and Americanization (through sport and religion) as a process not clearly defined by the dyad oppressor and victim. To the contrary, the story of the YMCA in Puerto Rico shows the ways in which YMCA leaders sought to bring progress to an “oppressed” people, while many locals welcomed a progressive institution of modern sports. My argument blurs the line between resistance and acculturation and instead proposes to see the YMCA and the early development of sport in Puerto Rico as a process of negotiations over power, identity, and culture.

DepositUn parque para cada pueblo: Julio Enrique Monagas and the Politics of Sport and Recreation in Puerto Rico during the 1940s.

During the 1940s, Puerto Rico enjoyed the benefits of a U.S. sponsored economic boom as a result of the Second World War. Taking advantage of this influx of capital, the Puerto Rican government’s sport and recreation commission, led by Julio Enrique Monagas, sought out an island-wide plan to build sport and recreational facilities under a social justice ideology. The mass produced athletic parks were built in both the major urban cities as well as in the rural towns, a process later dubbed a “sport revolution.” The government, through its sports commission, claimed that the mass athletic construction project was to uplift society, as well as a long awaited push for athletic modernization. However, more than top-down government policies, the politics of sport and recreation entailed popular demands for even more and better parks and programming. Thus, at stake with the plan, also known as “Un parque para cada pueblo,” was the negotiation over the terms of a hegemonic relation between the emerging Partido Popular Democrático, the citizenry, and in turn U.S. colonialism.