On and off the field: a Bourdieuian perspective on the significance of sport to urban Aboriginal Australians
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Sport is highly valued in Australian society and is one of few environments where Aboriginal Australians have opportunities to excel and engage with non-Aboriginal people; however, there is little evidence to suggest that sport has led to social improvements in Aboriginal communities or any transfer of engagement into non-Aboriginal dominated activities. While much has been written about elite Aboriginal sportspeople, less is known about how other Aboriginal people feel about sport and its place in their lives, including how it is linked to social capital (the benefits that accrue to individuals and groups through their network membership). Drawing on in-depth interviews and applying Bourdieu's theory of practice, this paper examines the role of sport in social capital creation for Aboriginal people living in urban settings. While sport facilitated important social and cultural resources, there were limitations to its ability to reduce disadvantage for Australian Aboriginal people.
Copyright 2014 Taylor & Francis