ERMeCC and EGSH would like to invite you to a joint seminar on 19 September


Contemporary media sport is positioned at the intersection, in Bourdieusian terms, of two fields.  It is here that sport is presented, represented and infused with a range of contested socio-cultural meanings.  Australia’s Indigenous peoples’ relationship to sport and media, as in the wider society, is multi-faceted and historically conditioned by the malign legacy of invasion and expropriation. 

Sport is represented in the media and political fields as a space of reconciliation in a settler-colonial nation, and one in which Indigenous success can be claimed as a sign of progress in ‘race’ relations.  But this celebration of Indigeneity in sport is heavily restricted by the demand that it be depoliticised.  When Indigenous sportspeople go beyond the boundaries of sporting assimilation, they encounter a vigorous right-wing authoritarian populist backlash that treats the assertion of Indigenous difference and rights as divisive and even scandalous.  


This presentation, which draws on case studies and research data from two Australian Research Council-funded projects, Australian Cultural Fields: National and Transnational Dynamics and A Nation of ‘Good Sports’? Cultural Citizenship and Sport in Contemporary Australia, will examine the role of the converged media and sport fields in debates about Indigeneity and racism in Australia.  More extensively, it addresses troubling questions of cultural citizenship in an ethnically and culturally diverse country in which sporting loyalties are posed as tests of fealty to nation under conditions of neo-colonialism, globalisation and transnationalism.

Moderator:    Jacco van Sterkenburg
Title:               ‘Race’, Indigeneity and the Australian Sport and Media Fields
Lecturer:        David Rowe

Date:              Thursday 19 September 2019
Time:             12.00 – 13.00
Location:       Mandeville building, T19-01

Please feel free to bring your lunch and comments!

Note: Seats are limited so register soon!


About the lecturer

David Rowe, FAHA, FASSA, is Emeritus Professor of Cultural Research, Institute for Culture and Society, Western Sydney University; Honorary Professor, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Bath; and Research Associate, Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy, SOAS University of London. 

His books include: Popular Cultures: Rock Music, Sport and the Politics of Pleasure (1995); Globalization and Sport: Playing the World (co-authored, 2001); Sport, Culture and the Media: The Unruly Trinity (second edition, 2004); Sport Beyond Television: The Internet, Digital Media and the Rise of Networked Media Sport (co-authored, 2012); Sport, Public Broadcasting, and Cultural Citizenship: Signal Lost? (co-edited, 2014), and Making Culture: Commercialisation, Transnationalism, and the State of ‘Nationing’ in Contemporary Australia (co-edited, 2018). 

David is a frequent expert commentator in both Australian and international media on socio-cultural matters.  His work has been translated into several languages, including Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Korean, Spanish and Turkish. 

In 2018 he received the Australian Sociological Association Distinguished Service to Sociology Award, and in the same year his book Global Media Sport: Flows, Forms and Futures (2011) was an Outstanding Book Selection of the National Academy of Sciences, Republic of Korea.