Civil Sociality

Children, Sport, and Cultural Policy in Denmark

Sally Anderson, University of Arhus

A volume in the series: Education Policy in Practice: Critical Cultural Studies. Editor(s): Rodney Hopson, American University. Edmund Hamann, University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Published 2008

Sally Anderson's book on sport, cultural policy, and “civil sociality” in Denmark has been a long time in coming, but it's well worth the wait. Based on many years of familiarity with Danish society, and countless hours of intensive fieldwork, Dr. Anderson provides us with a unique anthropological perspective on the process by which state cultural policy actively engages civil society in a quest to shape social relations in the public sphere. The particular domain of policy and social activity is nonschool, voluntary sport, in its various forms. By definition, of course, such activity takes place outside the regular Danish school curriculum, but it is not for this reason any less "educational." Indeed, although it is very broadly attended and institutionalized, perhaps because Danish after-school sport is not compulsory, it is all the more compelling for children and youth, and therefore more powerful in certain ways. Indeed, Dr. Anderson has a signal talent for showing us how afterschool sport in Denmark both transmits and produces social knowledge, and powerfully shapes social relations.

Acknowledgments. Series Editor Foreword. Preface. Introduction: Tying on Ends. 1. Ludic Fields. 2. Organizing Sports. 3. Incorporating Children. 4. Loose Children. 5. Age Mates and Sport Mates. 6. Room for Everybody. Conclusion: A Civilizing Moment. Bibliography. Index

"In this beautifully written and engaging ethnography, Anderson uncovers children's active engagement of civil society in Danish sports associations. The book insightfully captures the complex interweaving of macro level social policies and goals and adults and children's "performances" in generating civil society at the micro level. Anderson provides a major contribution to the timely topic of children and civil society." William A. Corsaro Indiana University