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Utilizing critical ethnography to understand the impact of COVID-19 on the structure of elite soccer in Korea

In: Research Handbook on Sport and COVID-19


  • Alex Gang
  • Kihan Kim
  • Sunghwan Byun
  • Paul M. Pedersen


The perseverance of COVID-19 triggered drastic changes in how sport is delivered and practiced today. This chapter focuses on understanding how female youth football players (U18) in Korea interpret challenges associated with the spread of the virus and preventive measures implemented to restrain the rate of virus infection. The perceived challenges denoted difficulties associated with limited opportunities to play, however, they reflect the underlying cultural values unique to the structure of Korean football. Typified by early specialization and emphasis on athletic engagement over academics, reduced opportunity to train and compete due to the enforcement of social distancing measures roused uncertainty about post-athletic career plans amongst youth football players. To address the cultural conditions that shape the structure of women's football in Korea, the authors utilized the Carspecken (1996) five-stages of critical ethnography.

Suggested Citation

  • Alex Gang & Kihan Kim & Sunghwan Byun & Paul M. Pedersen, 2022. "Utilizing critical ethnography to understand the impact of COVID-19 on the structure of elite soccer in Korea," Chapters, in: Paul M. Pedersen (ed.), Research Handbook on Sport and COVID-19, chapter 34, pages 424-432, Edward Elgar Publishing.
  • Handle: RePEc:elg:eechap:21289_34

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