Lessons of the Locker Room: The Myth of School Sports

Andrew W. Miracle, Author, C. Roger Rees, With
Andrew W. Miracle, Author, C. Roger Rees, With Prometheus Books $28 (243p) ISBN 978-0-87975-879-0
Paperback - 243 pages - 978-1-59102-113-1
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Miracle, a professor of sociology at Texas Christian University, and Rees, a professor of sociology at Adelphi University, set out to define--and expose--the myths largely responsible for what they regard as the overemphasis on sports in America's public schools. Tracing the development of ``muscular Christianity'' in the 19th century, they concentrate on the theory that participation in sports builds character, offering convincing arguments that the personalities of individuals are constant and little changed by athletic activity. As to viewing sports as a route to upward mobility, they repeat the widely recognized warnings that a career in professional sports comes to only a minuscule percentage of athletes. They stress the influence of business and industry on education, showing that in the past schools were expected to produce obedient, healthy and cooperative laborers, but with factory jobs being replaced by high-tech industries, business needs more math nerds than muscle-bound linebackers. (Mar.)
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