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By Cornel Sandvoss

Specialist soccer is among the preferred tv 'genres' around the world, attracting the help of hundreds of thousands of lovers, and the sponsorship of strong businesses. In A video game of 2 Halves, Sandvoss considers football's courting with tv, its hyperlinks with transnational capitalism, and the significance of soccer fandom in forming social and cultural identities all over the world. He offers the phenomenon of soccer as a mirrored image postmodern tradition and globalization.Through a sequence of case experiences, established in ethnographic viewers learn, Sandvoss explores the motivations and pleasures of soccer fanatics, the serious bond shaped among supporters and their golf equipment, the consequences of soccer intake on political discourse and citizenship, soccer as an element of cultural globalisation, and the pivotal position of soccer and tv in a postmodern cultural order.

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Extra info for A Game of Two Halves: Football Fandom, Television and Globalisation

Sample text

Football audiences read and appropriate hybrid semiotic structures composed of players and managers, tradition and history, board members and fans, stadia and landscapes and their diverse representation in different media. Different components of this plurality matter for different fans. The themes of failure and underachievement, for instance, are recurring motives in the description of clubs, especially among males in their 30s and 40s: Well, . . there is a lot of flair, but it hasn’t always been like that.

At first sight it may seem difficult to see how Bourdieu’s rigid model can serve to explain a practice as socially and culturally universal and diverse as football fandom. 4. 4. Similarly, in my own research I encountered participants from all social and educational classes,7 confirming two central objections of Bourdieu’s critics: Bourdieu’s misunderstanding of the nature of (a) class (Gans 1966; Fan practices and consumption 21 DiMaggio 1979; Honneth 1986; Lewis 1987) and (b) commodities (Grossberg 1985; Frow 1987; Fenster 1991).

Chris, Bayer Leverkusen fan) It [supporting Bayer] is part of my leisure time. I play chess, I worked for the local energy services and I founded a sports club there. We have played football there for years. I played tennis, passionately. They also have a very good basketball team [Bayer]. My wife and I have season tickets there . . Apart from that, there are other leisure activities, sometimes we go to the theatre . . I would say, football is only one component of all this. (Mr Perschul, Bayer Leverkusen fan) The consumption practices expressing the fandom of these two interviewees differ as much as the content of their fandom.

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