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Skateboarding and Religion

Authors: O'Connor, Paul

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  • Contends that the contemporary popularity of skateboarding is tied to an increased focus on individuality and a personal politics influenced by neoliberalism, meritocracy, and the subjective turn
    Sees the links between religion and skateboarding as being reflective of and a critique of issues in popular culture
    Argues that religion is an important part of how skateboarding can be understood, recognised, and explored

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eBook 58,84 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24857-4
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 72,79 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24856-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Immediate ebook access, if available*, with your print order
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
  • The final prices may differ from the prices shown due to specifics of VAT rules
About this book

This book explores the ways in which religion is observed, performed, and organised in skateboard culture.

Drawing on scholarship from the sociology of religion and the cultural politics of lifestyle sports, this work combines ethnographic research with media analysis to argue that the rituals of skateboarding provide participants with a rich cultural canvas for emotional and spiritual engagement. Paul O’Connor contends that religious identification in skateboarding is set to increase as participants pursue ways to both control and engage meaningfully with an activity that has become an increasingly mainstream and institutionalised sport. Religion is explored through the themes of myth, celebrity, iconography, pilgrimage, evangelism, cults, and self-help.

About the authors

Paul O’Connor is Adjunct Assistant Professor in Sociology at Lingnan University, Hong Kong, and holds an affiliation with the Faculty of Arts, Charles University, Prague. As a qualitative sociologist and veteran skateboarder, his research is focused on religion, ethnicity, and lifestyle sports. 

Reviews

“Skateboarding and Religion has much to offer those who are interested in reading more serious work about skateboarding and action sports. The book will also interest researchers studying contemporary religion and spirituality, particularly those with an interest in religion’s relationship with popular culture and sport.” (Daniel O’Neill, Leisure Studies, February 21, 2020)
“Paul O’Connor’s Skateboarding and Religion is an exhilarating book; it is simultaneously a challenge to all mainstream ideas about religion and religious experience, and a rich and nuanced study of the religious dimensions of skateboarding. O’Connor interrogates the origin myths of the sport, sketches portraits of the saints and mystics of the skateboarding world, profiles a diverse group of skaters from different geographical and religious contexts and offers a sophisticated reading of the aesthetics and symbolism used by skateboarders. The sacred spaces of the sport, the impulse for pilgrims to visit and engage with these sites, and the ritual dimensions of their activities are chronicled, and the text is enriched by images that make the phenomena discussed comprehensible for the reader. This original and joyous study is a major contribution to the study of contemporary religious and spiritual trends.” (Carole M. Cusack, Professor of Religious Studies, University of Sydney, Australia)

“Through a sociologist’s nuanced analysis and a skateboarder’s commitment to the daring, Paul O’Connor makes clear the often surprising religiosity that underpins skateboarding’s culture, industry, and even the act itself. This groundbreaking book will convince even the most stubbornly secular reader that skateboarding is something especially sacred in the modern world.” (Christian N. Kerr, Writer and Editor at Jenkem Magazine)

“At once insightful, questioning and provocative, Paul O’Connor’s Skateboarding and Religion takes two seemingly disconnected phenomena and shows how they are intrinsically inter-related. This massively original study will be of interest to anyone concerned with the sociology of skateboarding and other youthful practices. Very highly recommended.” (Iain Borden, Professor of Architecture and Urban Culture, University College London, UK)

“In Skateboarding and Religion Paul O’Connor provides a valuable expansion of the sport-religion relationship bound to impact multiple interdisciplinary audiences. Most works on sport and religion focus on team and commercial sports. O’Connor’s work is unique in offering a much-needed analysis of religion in the neglected area of lifestyle sports. From the perspective of sporting subcultures, he crafts an innovative framework for understanding religion across multiple denominational, informal, commercial, geographical, and artistic practices.” (Daniel A. Grano, Professor of Communication Studies, University of North Carolina, Charlotte, USA) 

“A seductive synthesis of radically different genres, O’Connor’s alchemy fuses the sociology of lifestyle sports with religious studies. This bold foray into the academic unknown requires a leap of faith which counters the notion of skateboarding as a culture of destructive iconoclasts. O’Connor’s fresh accounting of this oft demonized subculture argues that the everyday lives of skaters disturbs the sacred profane dualism of classic notions of religion, and instead should be understood as a ‘lifestyle religion’. In this view, a shared ethos of progression, sacrifice, and most critically, ritual practice establishes a ‘communitas’ that helps skaters make sense of themselves in a neo-liberal, fractured world.  Hell yeah.” (Gregory Snyder, Associate Professor of Sociology, City University of New York, USA)

Table of contents (12 chapters)

Table of contents (12 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook 58,84 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24857-4
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover 72,79 €
price for Spain (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-24856-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Immediate ebook access, if available*, with your print order
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
  • The final prices may differ from the prices shown due to specifics of VAT rules

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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Skateboarding and Religion
Authors
Copyright
2020
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-24857-4
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-24857-4
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-030-24856-7
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XV, 304
Number of Illustrations
3 b/w illustrations, 14 illustrations in colour
Topics

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