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Football as a batlefield of cosmopolitan and national identities

the formation of English national allegiance through football



Central European University



Área de concentração

Mestrado em Artes





The thesis has dealt with the interrelation between English football and English national allegiance. The main aim has been to find out the merit of football’s influence in the development of English identity, and the means the English has used to reinforce their affiliation towards the nation. England is considered to be the home of football, thus it offers an interesting study to find out its place within English society. Football has a unique value to operate on local, regional and national levels, and it is capable to evoke nationalistic sentiments in the society. The study implements narrative analysis of key historical events in English football, and also uses comparative approach in the analysis of the levels football operate on. Moreover, the study deals with the contemporary issue of xenophobia which has appeared also in English football. The major findings this study identified are primarily attached to the historical sporting successes of the English national football team and to the tendencies of the English to misuse stereotypes in negative connotation. The English fans and the press are prone to evoke nationalistic sentiments and hatred among the fans during international football competitions, by referring to historical military successes, or failures in war. The findings also acknowledged that there are tendencies in the English press and among the football fans to primarily blame and criticize foreigners for the team’s poor performance, by which they seek to reinforce feelings of national allegiance.


SLAMOVá, Dária. Football as a batlefield of cosmopolitan and national identities: the formation of English national allegiance through football. 2015. 63 f. Dissertação (Mestrado em Artes) - Central European University, Budapeste, 2015.