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A Theory of the Evolution of Modern Sport

Author

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  • Stefan Szymanski

    () (Tanaka Business School, Imperial College)

Abstract

This paper argues that modern sport developed out of new forms of associativity created during the European enlightenment. It argues that the fundamental unit of modern sport is the club, and that these associations developed autonomously in Britain during the eighteenth century following the retreat of the state from the control of associative activities. The evolution of modern sports thus formed part of the expansion of private associative activity that occurred in the Anglo-Saxon world. By contrast, in countries such as France and Germany where associativity continued to require the explicit or implicit license of the state, modern sports developed in ways consistent with or even in the service of the objectives of the state, most notably the need to maintain military preparedness.

Suggested Citation

  • Stefan Szymanski, 2006. "A Theory of the Evolution of Modern Sport," Working Papers 0630, International Association of Sports Economists;North American Association of Sports Economists.
  • Handle: RePEc:spe:wpaper:0630
    as

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    File URL: http://web.holycross.edu/RePEc/spe/Szymanski_Evolution.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Michela Pierini, 2011. "Diritti Tv E Competitive Balance Nel Calcio Professionistico Italiano," Rivista di Diritto ed Economia dello Sport, Centro di diritto e business dello Sport, vol. 7(2), pages 87-113, September.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    sports history;

    JEL classification:

    • L83 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Sports; Gambling; Restaurants; Recreation; Tourism

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