The Olympic Legacy

The Olympic Legacy : Social Scientific Explorations

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This comprehensive collection provides an overview of social scientific perspectives on Olympic legacy, using specialist analyses and selected cases to illuminate the recurring anthropological, political, and sociological dimensions of the legacy debate. Drawing upon research conducted on the Beijing, Vancouver, Athens, London and Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games, it identifies the recurrent rhetoric that has characterised the legacy debate, alongside the harsh realities that contradict many legacies and aspirations.

Fifteen researchers from six countries contribute a range of critical analytical studies which explore macro-perspectives on the shifting political economy symbolized at Beijing or in an over-reaching Greece, the soft power benefits perceived by the Rio 2016 organizers, the anthropological study of neighbourhood spaces threatened by corporate branding, and the apparatus of surveillance surrounding an Olympic Games. The symbolic importance of the Games is also captured in studies of volunteer motivations, labour and work initiatives, and the introduction of women's boxing at London 2012. In a comprehensive overview, Alan Tomlinson illuminates the rhetoric of successive Olympic cycles and the rise to prominence of the legacy question in that debate.

This book was originally published as a special issue of Contemporary Social Science.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 154 pages
  • 171 x 248 x 15.24mm | 454g
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1138940267
  • 9781138940260

Table of contents

Foreword: Bottling the Olympic Spirit David Canter

1. Olympic legacies: recurrent rhetoric and harsh realities Alan Tomlinson

2. The Beijing Olympics: complicit consumerism and the re-invention of citizenship Steven Miles

3. The legacies of the Athens 2004 Olympic Games: a bitter-sweet burden Roy Panagiotopoulou

4. Making the Olympics work: interpreting diversity and inclusivity in employment and skills development pre-London 2012 Lynn Minnaert

5. Training of Vancouver 2010 volunteers: a legacy opportunity? Angela M. Benson, Tracey J. Dickson, F. Anne Terwiel and Deborah A. Blackman

6. Landscapes of London 2012: `adiZones' and the production of (corporate) Olympic space Francesca Weber-Newth

7. Legacies of 2012: putting women's boxing into discourse Kath Woodward

8. London's shadow legacies: security and activism at the 2012 Olympics Jules Boykoff and Pete Fussey

9. The 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games and Brazil's soft power Barbara Schausteck de Almeida, Wanderley Marchi Junior and Elizabeth Pike
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About Alan Tomlinson

Alan Tomlinson is Professor of Leisure Studies, and Head of Doctoral Training, at the College of Arts and Humanities, University of Brighton, UK. He has authored and/or edited over 35 books on sport, leisure and popular culture, and written more than 100 journal articles and book chapters.
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