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It is impossible to fully understand contemporary society and culture without acknowledging the place of sport. Sport is part of our social and cultural fabric, possessing a social and commercial power that makes it a potent force in the world, for good and for bad. Sport has helped to start wars and promote international reconciliation, while every government around the world commits public resources to sport because of its perceived benefits. From the bleachers to the boardroom, sport matters.This exciting, comprehensive and accessible textbook introduces the study of sport, culture and society. International in scope, the book explores the key social theories that shape our understanding of sport as a social phenomenon and critically examines many of the assumptions that underpin that understanding. Placing sport at the very heart of the analysis, and including vibrant sporting examples throughout, the book introduces the student to every core topic and emerging area in the study of sport and society, including:The history and politics of sportSport and globalisationSport and the mediaSport, violence and crimeSport, the body and healthSport and the environmentAlternative sports and lifestylesSporting mega-eventsSport and developmentEach chapter includes a wealth of useful features to assist the student, including chapter summaries, highlighted definitions of key terms, practical projects, revision questions, boxed case-studies and biographies, and guides to further reading, with additional teaching and learning resources available on a companion website. Sport, Culture and Society is the most broad-ranging and thoughtful introduction to the socio-cultural analysis of sport currently available and sets a new agenda for the discipline. It is essential reading for all students with an interest in sport.