Given sport’s centrality in English society, what role does it play in symbolising contemporary English national identity? This comprehensive study explores the complex set of relationships between sport and what it means to be English in the twenty-first century. The bond between sport and nationalism has long been recognised, but with increasingly vociferous separatist nationalisms threatening the dismantling of the United Kingdom, a closer analysis is timely.
Part one addresses key debates regarding English national identity within the specific sporting contexts of association football, cricket, tennis, cycling and rugby. Part two discusses the complex relationship between religion, sport and English national identity as well as the attitudes and experiences of traditionally marginalized groups, including women, minority ethnic groups and disabled people. Part three considers the perspectives of the other UK nations on the link between sport and English national identity.
Sport and English National Identity in a 'Disunited Kingdom' is fascinating reading for all those with an interest in the sociology, politics and history of sport, and the study of nations, nationalism and national identity.