The proclamation of the ASEAN Community in 2015 will mark the latest in a long list of local, sub-national, national, and regional solidarities promoted by state bodies and non-government organizations under the rubric of “community.” Community emerged as a key term in Southeast Asian development circles in the post-war era, and has been an important interdisciplinary category within SEA studies. While ideas such as community building and community development represent positive social values that bring people together and promote social harmony, notions of community justify state and non-state interventions while depoliticizing such actions and papering over social cleavages.
Despite attracting far less attention in Southeast Asian studies, sport is another social category with positive connotations. Since being introduced across the region as a means of colonial subjectification, sportive practice have been embraced by national and local governments, non-state organizations, and above all by people to promote health, education and social interaction. Yet sport too has another side, encapsulated by unbridled nationalism, hyper-commercialism, unconcealed sexism, and perennial cheating controversies.
This panel will interrogate how sport and community have come together in Southeast Asia under rubric such as community building and community development. Temporally, geographically, and thematically diverse, the papers will examine how sport has been used to promote social betterment and collective solidarities (e.g. gender, ethnicity, class, nationalism, regionalism); the impact of these efforts at the local, national, and regional levels; and how these strategies have been embraced, resisted, or negotiated by athletes, officials, and other key participants.
Participants interested in joining the panel for AAS-in-Asia (Singapore, July 2014), please submit abstracts to firstname.lastname@example.org by 20th October.
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