Sports and Violence: A Critical Examination of Sport.
Lynn M. Jamieson and Thomas J. Orr
For those interested in critically exploring issues pertaining to sport violence, the book Sport and Violence: A Critical Examination of Sport by Lynn M. Jamieson and Thomas J. Orr provides practical and applicable solutions to societal challenges in sport. This book is intended for educators, practitioners, organizers, and parents. Jamieson and Orr provide a historical foundation of the global emergence of a critical sport topic. Additionally, they provide real-life occurrences and case studies to help the reader understand the magnitude of the issues associated with sports violence.
In the book, Jamison and Orr define sport violence as "any behavior that causes either physical or psychological injury related to either a direct or indirect result of a sport experience." They further define sport violence as "the diffusion of violent acts resulting from one's direct or indirect involvement in sport. Sport violence, therefore, can occur in the home, school, workplace, recreational site, at events and many other venues due to the sport contest or involvement itself" (p. 4).
Jamieson and Orr address health and wellness as being infringed upon by sport violence. They provide numerous accounts of sport violence such as hazing, hooliganism, and winning at all cost. A few examples that illustrate this disturbing trend include "father breaks nose of his 10-year-old's coach with hockey stick, player smashes aluminum bat into umpire's face and coach, also full time police officer offers pitcher $2 to hit next player" (p. 8). The authors state that this problem is caused by the fact that "the local leisure and sport service delivery system lacks the guidelines that give rise to learning a sport, competing in a sport, and creating a consistent process for children to advance to higher skill levels and competitive involvement. Further, the public, leisure service delivery systems abdicate their responsibilities when addressing this advancement and allow pressure groups to manage these responsibilities" (p. 178).
Sports and Violence: A Critical Examination of Sport also discusses how a "sound sport environment" can be developed by structuring programs to improve the understanding of different groups and group dynamics, and calling for research in sport ethics. Specifically, the development of standards, a uniform code of conduct, policy frameworks, qualified sport management professionals, program coordinating councils, and parent guidance and education are suggested as efforts that can emphasize the overall health and development of athletes.
As reviewers we feel that Sport and Violence: A Critical Examination of Sport is a contemporary book that addresses a timely sport issue and offers educators, practitioners, organizers, and parents practical and applicable solutions to societal challenges in sport.
Reviewed by Byron Martin and Renee Frimming, University of Southern Indiana