Friday, May 4, 2007

Interesting Summer Course: WEUR-W 405 The Footballization of Europe

First Summer Session 2007
M-F, 11:45 a.m. -1:00 p.m.
West European Studies, WEUR-W405
Germanic Studies, GER-V400
Sociology, SOC-S410
cross-listed in Russian & East European Studies
S & H Distribution, CSB Culture Credit
Christian Weber, – please contact for questions

In this course we will explore Europe’s modern history and society through the lens of one sports game: football (a.k.a. ‘soccer’). Football not only moves millions of people in stadiums or in front of the TV, it also mobilizes the masses in spontaneous street parties or riots, and it is a driving force of local patriotism, nationalism, and the development of a European identity. There is hardly a better way to study Europe in its modern history and diversity or unity as it is today than by learning about football teams from Scotland to the Balkans – competing in amateur matches or the UEFA Champions League.

We will discuss such questions as: What kind of a game/spectacle/ritual is football?* How did it come into existence, and how did it spread all over Europe and the world? How does football shape or reflect European societies and nations? How does it help to create a new European identity? What are the economic effects and how do the media transform the game? Finally: Why is football/‘soccer’ not a national sports event in the US?

Requirements include active participation in discussions, a presentation on a European football team that you ‘adopt,’ media/internet research, quizzes, and a final project.

* No practical skills or insider knowledge are required – though curiosity and enthusiasm for football are recommended!

Take a trip through Europe this summer! Enroll now!