This book explores how American sports, especially basketball, baseball and American football, have projected the US into the world, and brought the world into America. Taking a chronological approach it traces the development of American sports from the turn of the 20th century, highlighting how international forces such as immigration, geopolitics and war have influenced the trajectory of sport in the US, and thus the American experience. DuBois also considers the globalization of American sport and how this soft power shaped international relations throughout the American century. Addressing key questions about the role of sport in the rise of the United States, it frames themes that have come to define sports history; gender, race, economics and politics. It argues that while sport has not necessarily been a catalyst for change, it has often mirrored social issues, and sometimes served as an important tool of progress. Synthesizing major works alongside primary sources, the chapters study boxing, hockey, track and field and soccer alongside the ‘big three’ (basketball, baseball and American football) through a number of case studies to offer a novel interpretation of American sport history. Spanning early Native American sport, the export of baseball in the American empire, the role of basketball in the Cold War, the influence of immigrants and women in sports, and modern day sport culture, American Sport in International History asks what the role of sport has been and will be in a shifting international environment.
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