English National Identity and Football Fan Culture: Who Are by Tom Gibbons

By Tom Gibbons

Lately, students have understood the expanding use of the St George's move through soccer enthusiasts to be proof of an increase in a in particular 'English' id which has emerged as a part of a much broader 'national' reaction to broader political procedures reminiscent of devolution and eu integration that have fragmented identities in the united kingdom. utilizing the arguable figurational sociological procedure recommended through the twentieth-century theorist Norbert Elias, this publication demanding situations this kind of view, drawing on ethnographic study among fanatics to discover the appropriate nature of the connection among modern English nationwide identification and soccer fan tradition. interpreting soccer fanatics' expressions of Englishness in public homes and on-line areas, the writer discusses the consequences of globalisation, ecu integration and united kingdom devolution on English society, revealing that using the St George's move doesn't sign the emergence of a in particular 'English' nationwide cognizance, yet in reality mask a extra advanced, multi-layered strategy of nationwide id construction.A precise and down to earth research of id, nationalism and globalisation among soccer fanatics, English nationwide identification and soccer Fan tradition will entice students and scholars of politics, sociology and anthropology with pursuits in ethnography, the sociology of game, fan cultures, globalisation and modern nationwide identities.

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However, unfortunately this response has often been related to issues of ‘race’ and ethnicity associated with Britain’s far right organisations such as the BNP, National Front and most recently the EDL who champion racist politics and an ethnically exclusive white Englishness (see Trilling’s, 2013 book on the rise of Britain’s far right for more on this). Elias and Englishness So what can Elias add to the study of contemporary English national identity? Using Elias (1991) it is possible to see that Englishness is multi-layered and in a current state of flux due to the move of the British nation-state unit towards the larger integration unit of the European Union, itself an aspect of wider globalisation processes.

The following processes have all called the English reliance on Britain into question: the devolution of the UK; advancing European integration; and, the declining global power of the British Empire. Although most historians agree that there has been an ‘England’ and an ‘English’ since at least 937 (Colls, 2002: 380), contemporary English national identity became a topic of intense political and cultural debate prior to and following the election of a ‘New’ Labour government of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in 1997 (Bond, Jeffrey and Rosie, 2010).

Up until recent developments in UK devolution it was easy for the English and many non-British observers to forget the ‘Celtic fringes’ evident in the UK and to see Englishness and Britishness as more or less synonymous terms (Colley, 1996; Colls, 2002; Groom, 2006; Kumar, 2003). It is becoming ever more apparent that the ‘centripetal’ and ‘centrifugal’ forces which Elias (2000) contemplated have both now simultaneously increased significantly leading to a diminishing of contrasts between individuals in Europe but paradoxically an increasing of varieties in terms of expressions of national sentiment within the UK.

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