2012-07-20 Olympics@NPCU - Call for papers

Call for Papers - Olympics and the ‘isms’

Deadline 23 March 2012

Royal Holloway University of London, 20 July 2012

In summer 2012, London will host the XXX Olympic and XIV Paralympic Games.  As part of the Olympic Village, Royal Holloway provides a stimulating environment for a multidisciplinary dialogue that explores the tensions and contradictions within and between modern Olympic ideals and traditional ideologies (‘isms’). By seeking to sustain certain narratives and ideologies that precede the 21st century, the Olympics seemingly stands as an anomaly in our post/alter-modern times.

Following the Olympic idea of combining “a healthy body and a healthy mind”, we would like to invite contributions from athletes and academics to explore and problematise the framing of Olympics in the following binary logics:

  • Cosmopolitanism and Nationalism
    • What impact do the Games have on ‘cosmopolitan’ and ‘national’ narratives and identities?
  • Commercialism and Idealism
    • How does the commercialisation of the Games bear upon the political and ethical ideals underpinning our conceptions of sport generally and the Olympics in particular?
  • Amateurism and Professionalism
    • Is there a contradiction between the Olympic ideal of athletic amateurism and trends towards professionalism? How does this impact beyond the Games?

These are the ‘isms’ we are interested in, but we welcome additional ideas and contributions.

The morning session will follow a traditional conference format with speakers giving presentations followed by questions. The afternoon will be devoted to an interactive discourse analysis workshop in which we invite all participants to analyse selected Olympic-related texts, PR materials and media coverage. The results of this analysis will contribute towards a paper evaluating the discourse surrounding the Games. This, together with a selection of papers from the morning session, will be put forward for publication in a special issue of a journal.

If you are interested in taking part at this conference, please contact us with a 300 word abstract at olympismconference@gmail.com  by 23rd March 2012.