Synopses & Reviews
While major sporting events, such as the Super Bowl, the Olympics, and the World Cup, attract the attention of millions, and sometimes show sport at its best, growing concern over scandals and abuses in sport have increasingly raised questions about its moral standing. Stars are deprived of their Olympic Gold because of their use of performance-enhancing drugs, athletic programs of some major universities are racked with scandals, and the behavior of sports stars too frequently is violent and abusive. However, ethical concerns about sports run deeper than current scandals in today's headlines. Other concerns question the value of athletic competition itself. Does athletic competition reflect a selfish concern with winning at the expense of others? Should the role of sports in our educational institutions be significantly diminished? Does sport embody or express significant moral values? Or is it a corrupting influence, distracting us from more important concerns? Even worse, does it glorify the selfish pursuit of victory, and even violence against opponents and their fans, or against parents, referees, and opposing coaches in youth sports?Still other issues concern sport and social policy. What does gender equity in sport require? Do professional sports and the mass market corrupt the nature of sport and turn it into mere entertainment for the masses at the expense of the pursuit of true athletic excellence? Do sports organizations have good grounds for prohibiting the use of performance enhancing drugs, or are they illegitimately restricting the freedom of some athletes to pursue excellence in their own way?Fair Play is a rigorous exploration of the ethical presuppositions of competitive athletics and their connection both to ethical theory and to concrete moral dilemmas that arise in actual athletic competition. Professor Simon develops a model of athletic competition as a mutually acceptable quest for excellence and applies it to a variety of ethical issues that arise in sport. This edition of Fair Play adds new material throughout, including revised discussions of such topics as Title IX and gender equity, the commercialization of sport, the use of performance-enhancing drugs, the nature of sport, and the role of sport as a form of moral education.
“Robert Simon’s new edition of Fair Play is, simply put, the best book of its kind in the literature. The new section on genetic enhancement and the expanded section on the moral quandaries of intercollegiate sports are welcome, not to mention timely, additions. What’s more, the book is a compelling read, free of jargon, persuasively argued, and teeming with incisive commentary.” —William Morgan, University of Southern California
“Since, as Professor Simon says, sports play a major role in the lives of Americans, reflection on sports raises issues that not only have intrinsic interest but also go beyond the bounds of sport itself. The role of philosophy is to critically examine the complex issues in sports and our beliefs about them. Simon is a master at this. This third edition builds and expands these evaluations, especially in a time when sports in the U.S. are undergoing intense moral scrutiny. Readers will find this edition replete with contemporary examples, expanded discussions of performance enhancement drug use and of issues in intercollegiate sports, and a new section on genetic enhancement. This edition provides deeper insight into major issues in the philosophy of sport, and its accessibility makes it a must read for anyone who is interested in sports or interested in the role sports play in America.” —Jan Boxill, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Addressing both collegiate and professional sports, the revised and updated edition of Fair Play explores competitive athletics and their connections to moral dilemmas and ethical theory.
The second edition of Fair Play provides a comprehensive, clear, and philosophically sophisticated treatment of a broad variety of ethical issues in sport.
Addressing both collegiate and professional sports, the updated edition of Fair Play explores the ethical presuppositions of competitive athletics and their connection both to ethical theory and to concrete moral dilemmas that arise in actual athletic competition. A major new section in chapter four examines the ethics of genetically enhancing athletic abilities. Other new material covers the analysis of sports and games according to influential philosopher Bernard Suits; the morality of cheating and the ethics of strategic fouling; and the impact of performance-enhancing drugs on the legitimacy of records. In addition, Simon provides enhanced considerations of the morality of competition in sports, the ethical aspects of violence in sports, and the arguments in defense of intercollegiate sports.
About the Author
Robert L. Simon is Marjorie and Robert W. McEwen Professor of Philosophy at Hamilton College. A past fellow at the Rockefeller Foundation and National Endowment for the Humanities, he has also served as president of the International Association for the Philosophy of Sport. His books include The Individual and the Political Order, Neutrality and the Academic Ethic, and The Blackwell Guide to Political and Social Philosophy, and he is on the editorial board of the Journal of the Philosophy of Sport.