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Palgrave Macmillan

Football's Dark Side: Corruption, Homophobia, Violence and Racism in the Beautiful Game

ISBN 9781137371263
Publication Date May 2014
Formats Hardcover Ebook (EPUB) Ebook (PDF) 
Publisher Palgrave Pivot

Association football is the richest, most popular sport in history with a multicultural global following encompassing all religions. It is also riven with corruption, racism, homophobia and a violence that has for decades resisted all attempts to tame it. It is this Janus-faced quality that makes football so thrilling. Countless books have focused on the visibly glamorous, wholesome and admirable aspects of the sport. Cashmore and Cleland, by contrast, examine the unpleasant, sleazy and downright nasty aspects – football's dark side. Their approach is not to pontificate or judge, but to express the views of thousands of football fans on the game they love, but which they know has an unpleasant underside. Using their innovative topfan.co.uk research platform, Cashmore and Cleland have interviewed thousands of fans to present a matchless account of football from a new perspective. This is how fans view football's dark side.

@elliscashmore / @drjamiecleland

Ellis Cashmore is Professor of Culture, Media and Sport at Staffordshire University, UK. is the author of Beckham; Tyson; Making Sense of Sports and other books on social and cultural aspects of sport. You can find out more about Ellis at http://bit.ly/EllisCashmore.
Jamie Cleland is a Lecturer in Criminology at Loughborough University, UK. He has published widely on contemporary football fandom and identity. You can find out more about Jamie at http://www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/socialsciences/staff/cleland-jamie.html.

1. Introduction

2. Corruption

3. Homophobia

4. Violence

5. Racism

6. Conclusion


"Amid widespread contemporary expressions of positivity regarding football's assumed social value, one might be forgiven for thinking that the game's deleterious aspects are being consigned to history. Football's Dark Side provides a critical and timely rejoinder, demonstrating that beyond the glamour and spectacle an array of serious problems and exclusions endure." – Daniel Burdsey, School of Sport and Service Management, University of Brighton, UK
"This research is driven throughout by a mass online survey of football supporters and this approach makes the book a unique and invaluable resource for understanding the negative aspects of football culture." - LSE Review of Books
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