The next film to be shown as part of the SHSSW film series is Fahrenheit 2010: World Cup South Africa, 2010. Directed by: Craig Tanner. The film seminar will take place on 6 April, 4-6pm, Saint Michael’s building, 1.01.
For four action-packed weeks in June and July 2010, the largest international television audience to ever follow a single event was watching the football World Cup in South Africa. As the clock ticks down, and the nations of the world anticipate the beautiful games showpiece, questions are being asked about what will happen after the trophy is lifted, the caravans move on, and the dogs stop barking… Fahrenheit 2010 cuts through the hype, with an uncompromising examination of what the World Cup means for South Africans themselves – in particular, who actually stands to benefit from the diversion of millions of dollars to build 21st century sports arenas in a country in which, 15 years after throwing off apartheids yoke, millions live in shacks and have no access to water a South Africa where life expectancy has plummeted to below that of Ethiopia. International heavyweights like Archbishop Desmond Tutu, construction workers, FIFAs Communications Director, street traders, politicians, and sports celebrities, to mention some of the remarkable cast, wade into the debate. National pride, corruption and even murder feature in this astonishingly candid film which peels back the glossy media veneer to expose the real concerns of ordinary South Africans: hopes about jobs, the eviction of school children to make way for construction company offices, the removal of an inconvenient community, and what traditional medicine and the influence of the ancestors might mean for the fortunes of the local team. Fahrenheit 2010 takes the temperature of the Rainbow Nation as it prepares to roll out The Greatest Show on Earth.
Our respondent to this film will be Prof. Barry Smart from the School of Social, Historical and Literary Studies, University of Portsmouth.
Prof. Smart is interested in the contribution social theory and cultural analysis can make to our understanding of and effective engagement in contemporary social life. His work draws on both classical and contemporary social thought and explores particular aspects of the transformation of modern societies. In his work he draws on material from a range of disciplinary fields, including sociology, philosophy, political economy, and the inter-disciplinary field of cultural studies. His research interests include critical social and cultural analysis; the consequences of the globalization of consumer culture; fiscal sociology and the transformation of economic life; the cultural economy of sport. On this last topic he recently published several articles including:
2005 The Sport Star – Modern Sport and The Cultural Economy of Sporting Celebrity, London, Sage.
2007 `Not playing around: global capitalism, modern sport and consumer culture in Global Networks journal, special edition on `Globalization and Sport edited by Roland Robertson and Richard Giulianotti, Vol. 7, No. 2, 2007, pp 113-134 – also in in `Globalization and Sport edited by Roland Robertson and Richard Giulianotti, Blackwell, Oxford, 2007, pp 6-27.
2011 (in press) ‘Global sporting icons: consuming signs of economic and cultural transformation’, in the Blackwell Companion to Sport edited by David L Andrews, Wiley-Blackwell .
2011 (in press) `Play, spectacle, and profit: global sport and the cultural economy of late capitalism, in Being Cultural edited by B Cohen, Pearson Press, New Zealand.