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Drunk for three weeks: Sporting success and city image

Journal Article


Abstract


  • This article analyses the role of sport in the projection of city image (especially in non-metropolitan areas) and its significance as an urban and regional marker of civic progress and triumph over adversity. It presents a case study of the extraordinary community and media response to the 1997 grand final victory of the Newcastle Knights in the Australian Rugby League's inaugural Optus Cup competition. In discussing the case-study material and current debates on commerce, culture and place-marketing, the article canvasses the importance of sport in generating significant economic activity and urban redevelopment; reflecting and projecting, especially in deindustrializing cities, the growth of the service sector of the economy; promoting the image or 'brand identity' of the city by identifying the success and interests of the team with that of the city; and functioning as a locus of community affect and identity which reproduces the concept of spatially constructed unity. The article cautions against an undue reliance on sports teams as indices of civic health, and on the use of sport to obscure cultural differences, structural social inequalities and the deep impact of deindustrialization. © ISSA and SAGE Publications.

Publication Date


  • 1999

Citation


  • Rowe, D., & McGuirk, P. (1999). Drunk for three weeks: Sporting success and city image. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 34(2), 125-141. doi:10.1177/101269099034002003

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-0000944516

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 125

End Page


  • 141

Volume


  • 34

Issue


  • 2

Abstract


  • This article analyses the role of sport in the projection of city image (especially in non-metropolitan areas) and its significance as an urban and regional marker of civic progress and triumph over adversity. It presents a case study of the extraordinary community and media response to the 1997 grand final victory of the Newcastle Knights in the Australian Rugby League's inaugural Optus Cup competition. In discussing the case-study material and current debates on commerce, culture and place-marketing, the article canvasses the importance of sport in generating significant economic activity and urban redevelopment; reflecting and projecting, especially in deindustrializing cities, the growth of the service sector of the economy; promoting the image or 'brand identity' of the city by identifying the success and interests of the team with that of the city; and functioning as a locus of community affect and identity which reproduces the concept of spatially constructed unity. The article cautions against an undue reliance on sports teams as indices of civic health, and on the use of sport to obscure cultural differences, structural social inequalities and the deep impact of deindustrialization. © ISSA and SAGE Publications.

Publication Date


  • 1999

Citation


  • Rowe, D., & McGuirk, P. (1999). Drunk for three weeks: Sporting success and city image. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 34(2), 125-141. doi:10.1177/101269099034002003

Scopus Eid


  • 2-s2.0-0000944516

Web Of Science Accession Number


Start Page


  • 125

End Page


  • 141

Volume


  • 34

Issue


  • 2