Sociology of American football Essay
Sociology of American football
Today a lot of people are watching this sport called football. A sport lasting a total of twenty-six weeks that are so intense you almost never want it to end! American football derived from the game of rugby whose rules were instituted by a Yale University player and coach; Walter Camp. One of Camp’s influences came from rugby player William Ebb Ellis in 1823; who was the first to pick up the ball and run with it. Walter Camp continued to edit the rulebook of football up until his death in 1925.
Today Walter Camp’s legacy lives on with an outstanding league known as the NFL or National Football League; which started in 1920. When we look at the socio demographic description of players within this sport it can change depending on the circumstance. American football can be amateur and a professional sport, depending on the league; I choose to focus more on the NFL during this paper. The socio demographic description of players within the professional NFL would be physically fit males between the ages of 20 and 48. George Blanda was the oldest to retire from the NFL after playing 26 seasons.
Fans of this particular sport fit a general description of males between the ages of 18-64; there is what we call bandwagon fans and true fans. Although plenty of females enjoy the sport as well, the above stated is only a general socio demographic description. A violent, rigidly hierarchical, and highly gendered sport—the sporting equivalent of the military—football is often seen by its supporters and detractors alike as the embodiment of everything that is right (or wrong) about American culture and society (homepage. smc. edu).
This sport is used to celebrate several identities, as well as used as a stage within the American business world to help in promotion of products and their self. The impact professional sports have on America is nonetheless a great impact; whether positive or negative. American football probably is the one sport of greatest impact to our American society today. The NFL is covered by the media and for this reason the sport of football is a multi-billion dollar industry. Athletes now are looked at as highly skilled, highly aid commodities rather than heroic.
Young men are watching football and seeing the toughness, fighting, elbowing and big muscles and strength of it all have become quite appealing to them, leading football players to be their biggest role models. The fame the media has gained these athletes have led a lot of young people to want this same fame rather than sit around in front of video games all day and do nothing with their lives. We do see a lot of negative from the media however. Racial stereotypes still exist in modern media.
Media representation of a sport can also effect, to an extent, who plays the game. “Apparently positive images of black achievement reinforce the stereotype of black athleticism, and so limit the perceptions of teachers and coaches about other accomplishments (ahfcchat. com). ” I believe as a beginning sociologist that the sport of football is needed by a lot of individuals. For its proponents, football provides the ideal proving ground for young men to test and develop their manhood, instilling values such as teamwork and self-reliance (homepage. smc.edu).
The females are looking to fit in with the game by joining pep squads and participating in ‘powder puff’ games, knowing this to be the most popular televised sport to watch; everyone wants to be a part of it some kind of way. Football is thus denounced as a promoter of violence, sexism, and greed, with no finer symbol of its problems than football-star-turned-suspected-murderer O. J. Simpson. In short, football at the beginning of the 21st century, as in the early 20th century, remains one of the country’s most loved and hated sports (homepage.smc. edu).
References Football in the USA; American Culture and the World’s game Peter S. Morris. Retrieved Online http://homepage. smc. edu/morris_pete/papersandpresentations/main/footballinusa. html The impact professional sports have on American Society Author Unknown. Retrieved Online. http://www. helium. com/items/1154047-impact-of-professional-sports-on-american-society The impact of media on sport After hours Football Club. Retrieved Online. http://www. helium. com/items/1154047-impact-of-professional-sports-on-american- society.
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 1 June 2017
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