Sport Heritage Review

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Wanted: Sport Heritage Graduate Student

I am looking to recruit a graduate student (preferably at the doctoral level) with a strong interest in sport heritage research to work with me beginning in Fall 2015 in the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management at Clemson University.

Sport heritage has in recent years become a powerful vehicle for exploring the social, political, and economic uses of the past. Much of the research to-date has primarily focused on the use of sport heritage in tourism through heritage attractions such as halls of fame, sports stadiums and venues, and sport heritage events among many others. Sport halls of fame and museums, for example, have been examined as to their role in creating and disseminating the sporting past and their relationship to broader social, political and economic agendas. Sports stadia and sporting venues have been explored as potential tourist attractions, their role in commodifying memory, their role in creating authentic experiences, and their part in constructing national identities. Heritage-based sporting events have been explored as avenues for maintaining expressions of cultural identity, as creators of heritage-based place identities, as reflectors of heritage dissonance, as promoters of non-sport heritage, and as constructors of liminal heritages. Sport heritage also has been positioned as a form of secular pilgrimage, as a catalyst for diasporic travel, and as an avenue for memorialization. Beyond its touristic use, sport heritage has also been explored as to its unique management and conservation issues, its relationship to sport history, and its role in creating intangible legacies.

I am seeking a student who will further enhance sport heritage research by developing new and innovative lines of inquiry.  In particular, I would be interested in working with students in the following areas of sport heritage research (though others would be considered):

  • Sport heritage and tourism
  • Sport heritage and pilgrimage
  • Living sport heritage (e.g.: athletes as artefacts)
  • Contested sport heritage
  • Dark sport heritage
  • Sport heritage mobilities
  • Visitor motivations
  • Sport heritage management
  • Sport heritage conservation
  • Best practices for sport museums
  • Performance of sport heritage
  • Existential sport heritage
  • Nostalgia and sport heritage
  • Sport heritage and national identity

Students may be US-based or international.  Funding for up to four years of study at the doctoral level may be available to a qualified candidate.

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Founded in 1889 and situated in South Carolina, Clemson University is a top-20 US public university with an enrolment of approximately 21,000 students.  With 36 faculty and 130 graduate students from around the world, the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management was founded in 1966 and is one of the top departments of its kind in the United States.  From a sport heritage standpoint, Clemson University is within close driving distance of many top sport heritage locations, including the NASCAR Hall of Fame, the College Football Hall of Fame, and several former Olympic sites. Clemson University also has a strong sporting culture, with several top athletics programs – such as football and men’s basketball – that attract over 600,000 spectators a season.

If you would like to know more about this opportunity, please contact me at gramsha@clemson.edu.  For more information on my background, publications, and current projects, please see my departmental biography or the “About The Author” section of this blog.


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