Abstract: Since their invention in mid-nineteenth century Britain, modern sports have traveled: first, as they were exported to all regions of the world, often piggybacking on colonial projects; second, as sports are often brought to troubled economies and states in the context of development and reconciliation projects; and third, as athletes moved across national and other borders to play and seek a livelihood by playing. Athlete mobility is more alive than ever in the contemporary world, and Pacific Islanders’ participation in this mobility is disproportionate to the visibility of their nations on the global stage. Understanding the meaning of sport in the region, however, raises important questions whose implications reach beyond the confines of sport: the workings of power in a world in which bodies become commodities; the conflicts that arise between different epistemologies of development and resource use; and the clashes between different conceptualizations of the future.
The Contemporary Pacific – University of Hawai'I Press
Published: Sep 17, 2014