Sport and youth inclusion in the ‘Majority World’: Tess Kay
Introduction There is no bigger challenge to inclusion than the deprivation experienced by the populations of the Majority World. Westernised societies may be deeply inequitable, but social and material disadvantage simply take on a different order of magnitude in the poorer nations of the globe. For these countries, exclusion through poor health is not a matter of the incremental effects of obesity and sedentary lifestyles, but of immediate exposure to the deadly impacts of infant mortality, malnutrition and global pandemics that have reduced life expectancy in some countries to less than forty years. Here, exclusion through education does not mean that some young people are disengaged from schooling and under-achieve academically, but that illiteracy is widespread among whole swathes of populations, not only undermining individual and collective economic prosperity, but also limiting their access to the information and knowledge that allows them to manage their own lives effectively. In these contexts, too, social discrimination manifests not as relative disadvantage, but as an elemental undervaluing of less powerful groups that too often ostracises those with disabilities, legitimises the undervaluing of female lives even before birth, and exposes members of lower status castes, tribes and ethnic groups to injustice, hostility and violence. Underpinning these are experiences of poverty that are not relative but absolute, manifest in poor living conditions, acute material deprivation and deficiencies in service provision and infrastructure that can foster divisive social relations.