New book by Galway academic examines sport and film

A new book, examining the role which sport and film play in people’s lives, especially during times of economic or political crisis, is being launched next week.

Sport and Film, by NUI Galway academic Seán Crossan, and published by Routledge, will be officially launched by Philip Dine at 5.30pm on Monday in the Huston School of Film & Digital Media, across from Galway Cathedral.

Sport and Film traces the relationship between these two important cultural forms from the late 19th century to the present. It also examines the importance of the sports film internationally, with a special concentration on its role in American society and culture. Dr Crossan notes how some of the most commercially successful sports films, such as Million Dollar Baby, The Blind Side, and The Fighter, were made in the post-9/11 era and into the economic crisis.

“The mainstream sports film has been centrally concerned with affirming the meritocracy myth of the American dream particularly at points where it would appear to be most under threat,” says Dr Crossan. “Some of the most commercially successful depictions of a range of sports have been released over the past 10 years and these films represent, at least partly, a response to contemporary political and economic challenges to the American dream ideology itself.”

The book also examines such sports film classics as Harold Lloyd’s The Freshman (1925 ), Raging Bull (1980 ), and the British comedy Bend it Like Beckham (2002 ).

Seán Crosson is programme director of the MA in film studies: theory and practice in the Huston School of Film & Digital Media at NUI Galway.

All are welcome to the launch.

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