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The Quality of Home Runs: The Passion, Politics, and Language of Cuban Baseball

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In parks and cafes, homes and stadium stands, Cubans talk baseball. Thomas F. Carter contends that when they are analyzing and debating plays, games, teams, and athletes, Cubans are exchanging ideas not just about baseball but also about Cuba and cubanidad, or what it means to be Cuban. The Quality of Home Runs is Carterandrsquo;s lively ethnographic exploration of the interconnections between baseball and Cuban identity. Suggesting that baseball is in many ways an apt metaphor for cubanidad, Carter points out aspects of the sport that resonate with Cuban social and political life: the perpetual tension between risk and security, the interplay between individual style and collective regulation, and the risky journeys undertaken with the intention, but not the guarantee, of returning home.

As an avid baseball fan, Carter draws on his experiences listening to and participating in discussions of baseball in Cuba (particularly in Havana) and among Cubans living abroad to describe how baseball provides the ground for negotiations of national, masculine, and class identities wherever Cubans gather. He considers the elaborate spectacle of Cuban baseball as well as the relationship between the socialist state and the enormously popular sport. Carter provides a detailed history of baseball in Cuba, analyzing players, policies, rivalries, and fans, and he describes how the sport has forged connections (or reinforced divisions) between Cuba and other nations. Drawing on insights from cultural studies, political theory, and anthropology, he maintains that sport and other forms of play should be taken seriously as crucibles of social and cultural experience.

Synopsis:

Uses the sport of baseball, about which most Cubans are passionate, to look at what it means to be Cuban and at how Cuba deals with the outside world, as well as to compare various disciplinary approaches to the sport.

About the Author

Thomas F. Carter, an anthropologist, is a Senior Lecturer at the University of Brighton, Chelsea School.

Table of Contents

Preface: Entering the Field vii

Acknowledgments xv

Introduction. The Theoretical andquot;Stretching:andquot; of Sport and the State 1

1. Baseball and the Language of Contention 17

2. Circling the Base Paths: Baseball, Migration, and the Cuban Nation 36

3. The Spectacle of and for Cuba 63

4. The State in Play: The Politics of Cuba's National Sport 89

5. Fans, Rivalries, and the Play of Cuba 111

6. Talking a Good Game 136

7. The Qualities of Cubanidad: Calidad and Lucha in Baseball 159

Conclusion: Touching 'Em All: Recalling and Recounting Home Runs 183

Notes 203

Works Cited 213

Index 231

Product Details

ISBN:
9780822342762
Author:
Carter, Thomas F.
Publisher:
Duke University Press
Author:
Carter, Thomas
Subject:
Caribbean & West Indies - Cuba
Subject:
Baseball
Subject:
Social aspects
Subject:
Baseball - History
Subject:
Anthropology - Cultural
Subject:
Sociology of Sports
Subject:
Baseball - General
Subject:
Baseball - Cuba
Subject:
Baseball -- Social aspects -- Cuba.
Subject:
anthropology;cultural anthropology
Edition Description:
Trade Paper
Publication Date:
20081131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
6 photographs
Pages:
256
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Anthropology » Cultural Anthropology
Sports and Outdoors » Sports and Fitness » Baseball » General
Sports and Outdoors » Sports and Fitness » Sociology of Sports

The Quality of Home Runs: The Passion, Politics, and Language of Cuban Baseball New Trade Paper
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Product details 256 pages Duke University Press - English 9780822342762 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
Uses the sport of baseball, about which most Cubans are passionate, to look at what it means to be Cuban and at how Cuba deals with the outside world, as well as to compare various disciplinary approaches to the sport.
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