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Pride of the People: Fijian Rugby Labour Migration and Collective Identity

Kanemasu, Yoko and Molnar, Gyozo (2012) Pride of the People: Fijian Rugby Labour Migration and Collective Identity. International review for the sociology of sport. ISSN 1012-6902

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Abstract

Rugby is a sport that has given Fiji international recognition. The professionalisation of rugby has led to a growing number of elite players emigrating from Fiji – often temporarily but sometimes permanently – to metropolitan countries, with an estimated 450 athletes currently involved in foreign competitions. Whilst Fijians have a long history of migration to metropolitan societies, the recent global dispersion of rugby players has added new dimensions and complexities. This article intends to shed light upon this migratory phenomenon by exploring what it means for these Fijians to ply their trade in foreign leagues. Based on semi-structured interviews, the article examines the experiences of Fijian players who are currently or have previously been contracted by metropolitan rugby clubs and what these experiences mean to them regarding their sense of collective identity and pride, especially in the context of politico-economic disparities between Fiji and the host countries. In doing so, particular attention is paid to the voices and agency of those athletes who claim rugby migration as a space for counter-hegemonic collective self-expression. The article thus seeks to contribute to our understanding of the dynamics of the relationship between sports labour migration and collective local identification and resistance in an increasingly globalised world.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information:

Published online before print on August 28th 2012. Staff and students at the University of Worcester can access the full-text of this article via the Get it from ILS service. External users should check availability with their local library or Interlibrary Requests Service.

Uncontrolled Keywords: counter-hegemony, Fiji, identity, migration, rugby
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
Divisions: Academic Departments > Institute of Sport and Exercise Science
Depositing User: Gyozo Molnar
Date Deposited: 28 Sep 2012 08:30
Last Modified: 28 Sep 2012 08:30
URI: https://eprints.worc.ac.uk/id/eprint/1703

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