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Bilbao - Cultures of football


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Looking at the formation of football cultures around particular cultural, historical and geographical contexts, in this case focussing on Athletic Bilbao. A 3rd yr undergraduate presentation created as part of the Living in a Digital World Media & Communications module at Coventry University.

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Bilbao - Cultures of football

  1. 1. Presented by Leon Emirali Jason KurmooBenedict Sycamore
  2. 2. Aims Travel to Bilbao and document life of a local Examine the history of the Basque Country Identify how a city such as Bilbao remains economically stable
  3. 3. Objectives Use a covert micro-ethnographic approach to document life in Bilbao Validate primary research by using secondary resources Observe how the city’s new service industries, now generate money for the city
  4. 4. Field Research Inductive stance Interpretive-Constructivism Covert Micro-Ethnography Visual Ethnography
  5. 5. Brief History of Bilbao Bilbao capital city of the Biscay provinces Economic history of Bilbao Spanish Civil war Basque Nationalism
  6. 6. Brief History of Bilbao Ikurriña Union Jack
  7. 7. Athletic Club Overview Founded in 1898 Most successful Club outside of Real Madrid and Barcelona Founded by British steel ship yard workers Cantera Policy “Home grown” Owned by fans ‘socio’s’
  8. 8. Habitus and Bilbao “the habitus is a system of dispositions, constituted by durable, learned schemes of perception, thought and action which individuals learn through socialisation and their daily encounters with objective social structures – called ‘fields’ in the work of Bourdieu – which place requirements and incumbencies upon its members that are subsequently ‘absorbed’ into the habitus.” – Sean Morrissey
  9. 9. Habitus of Bilbao Enam Gartziar: “Our fathers are not originally from here, they are from Zaragoza and Lyon but have always supported the beliefs of Bilbao and the football club.”
  10. 10. Influence of Football “The regulated and codified form of football, which penalised violent and ‘ungentlemanly’ conduct, came to be welcomed by the bourgeoisie and subsequently, the working classes became increasingly ‘embourgeoisified’” - Sean Morrissey
  11. 11. Influence of Football Vie Cazmen: “The philosophy of the team makes us feel very special and unique because there are no football players from other parts of Europe. The club is not in the market of business and it not the question of how much you can pay for football players but feeling of Basque, feeling of good players…… like it’s a dream for that player to play for the club. We believe that this philosophy of belonging is the reason and it’s not that you have to be born in Bilbao; you can be born in Africa e.t.c.”
  12. 12. Influence of Football Subcultural Capital – The non-financial and social assets of a culture that is (in some form) differentiated from the larger culture to which it operates within, or belongs. (A neotribe)
  13. 13. Influence of Football Neotribalism is the ideology that human beings have evolved to live in tribal society, as opposed to mass society, and thus will naturally form social networks constituting new "tribes”.
  14. 14. Liminality Part 1 – Removed from familiar environments Part 2 – Liminal Space, not ruled by the environment from which they came, not yet invested in new environment Part 3 – Emergence, the application of insights, inner stirrings, new respect for diversity seen in others
  15. 15. A global comparison Football support in China Chinese unity in football Neo-Tribalism and Identity Fractured Spain Political Football
  16. 16. The City, The Space City Zoning Fig. 1: New York City Fig. 1: New York Grid
  17. 17. The City, The Space Milton Keynes City design New City in the U.K. Fig. 3: Milton Keynes Central Grid Fig. 4: Milton Keynes Plan
  18. 18. Use of space in Bilbao
  19. 19. The City, The Space “underlying nearly all leisure forms is a characteristic which most liberal and radical writers tend to pass over in silence; self consciousness. If we are aware of the significance of our leisure activity – whether it can be said to be good or bad, whether it has high or low status – can we really be said to be free?” (Rojek 1993:4)
  20. 20. Characteristics of a city Bourgeois Culture Human Nature Leisure and Reward
  21. 21. Characteristics of a city “leisure can not be enjoyed unless it is won by effort, if it have not been earned by work, the price has not been paid for it ... but the leisure without the work, can no more be enjoyed than surfeit” (Smiles 1894:93)
  22. 22. Characteristics of a city “Maps are full of references and indications, but they are not peopled. You often need a map to get around a city, its subways system its streets. But the preliminary orientation hardly exhausts the reality in which you find” (Bird, J. Et al 1993:188)
  23. 23. Characteristics of a city Landscape as human activity Culturalism Spain’s hegemony over the Basque Country
  24. 24. Characteristics of a city “in the primitive view, land is not a thing that can be cut into pieces and sold as parcels. Land if not a piece of space within a large spatial system. On the contrary, it is seen term of social relations the people as part of nature, are intimately linked to the land” (Sack 1980:22)
  25. 25. Use of Space in Bilbao What space means? What does Bilbao look like today?
  26. 26. Football as Commodity A game for the working classes? Highly profitable industry Athletics fierce preservation of identity
  27. 27. Football as Commodity “sport stars have a similar status to rock and movie stars and are not key figures in the celebrity landscape” Ellis Cashmore
  28. 28. Virtual Space Promoting engagement and interactivity Professional Blog Facebook, Twitter ect.
  29. 29. SummaryWe have covered: How Bilbao remain economically stable How space is used in cities in relation to Bilbao The origins of Basque nationalism How football constructs habitus in social city scapes The way football is changing as a result of commodification How identity has been attempted to be preserved by Athletic Bilbao
  30. 30. Conclusion Neo-Liberal policy and attitude has forced Athletic Bilbao to conform to the consumerism of the modern world to retain financial stability Bilbao is still affected by the hegemony of the ruling country, Spain and is yet to gain independence. Bilbao is consistent with wanting to keep their own identity and sense of regionalism and nationalism.
  31. 31. The Next Step Look further across Spain to gain understanding of the intricate fractions that exist in Spanish society and culture. More extensive primary research to carry out more accurate field research. Conducting a full ethnographic study
  32. 32. Thank you for listeningWe would now like to open the floor to questions
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