The social psychology of watching sports: From ilium to living room

Peter B. Crabb, Jeffrey H. Goldstein

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

6 Citations (SciVal)


The division of labor in Western sports has usually, but not always, fallen loose­ ly into two roles, player-contestants and spectators. The historical course of spec­ tator roles and changes (if any) in the behavior of spectators indicates that sports spectatorship appeared about 5,000 years ago in the cosmopolitan cultures of the Mediterranean and Middle East. In this chapter, we explore the development of spectatorship through the ages, report on recent empirical investigations into the social psychology of watching sports, and make some speculations about the func­ tion of sports in everyday life, especially as sports enters interpersonal transac­ tions and conversation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationResponding to the Screen
Subtitle of host publicationReception and Reaction Processes
PublisherTaylor and Francis
Number of pages18
ISBN (Electronic)9781136690914
ISBN (Print)0805800336, 9780805800333
StatePublished - Jan 1 2013

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Arts and Humanities
  • General Social Sciences


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