Vol. 10 No. 20 (2020): Prospettive weberiane. Uno sguardo sul presente a partire da Max Weber
Eliasian Themes

L'eredità di Norbert Elias nella sociologia dello sport

Luca Bifulco
Università degli Studi di Napoli Federico II

Published 2021-04-12


  • Norbert Elias,
  • sportization,
  • figurational sociology of sport

How to Cite

Bifulco, L. (2021). L’eredità di Norbert Elias nella sociologia dello sport. Cambio. Rivista Sulle Trasformazioni Sociali, 10(20), 129–143. https://doi.org/10.13128/cambio-9867


The paper aims to analyse Norbert Elias’ legacy in the sociology of sport, marked by the centrality of figurational theory in the tradition of this field of study. The typical features of this approach, also applied to sport analysis, are: the focus on figurations, that is on the networks of interdependence in the structuring of social phenomena; the idea of the processual character of social reality; the idea that social processes are the effect of the interconnection of unintentional actions; the importance of the power differential. On this theoretical basis Elias and his followers explore the relationship between civilization and sportization as fundamental ingredients of the definition of modern society and sports, analyse the role of sport as a site of emotional expression and harmless excitement in a social reality based on the routine control of emotions, seek in the study of hooliganism confirmation of the validity of the basic assumptions of figurational theory. A theory that has produced a wide and fervent debate in the scientific community.


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