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Sport Italia: The Italian Love Affair with Sport Hardcover – 22 Jul 2011


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd (22 July 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845118200
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845118204
  • Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3 x 23.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 391,913 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Review

'An important social history from an unexpected angle. It rightly suggests that the histories of other countries could be told through sport.' (New Statesman)

'The originality of Sport Italia by Simon Martin lies in its breadth and scope... fascinating.' (John Foot, TLS)

'A book that was waiting to be written.' (Simon Kuper, author of Football Against the Enemy)

'A masterful analysis... Simon Martin has given us an elegantly structured and meticulously researched history of modern Italy.' (David Winner, author of Brilliant Orange)

'From Mussolini to Maggiopoli, political interference and scandal has never been far from calcio, and Martin's book explores the integral role of sport on Italy's identity. It's an ambitious study, but one the author backs up with stacks of insight and diligent research.' (Four Four Two)

'While others have chosen to view the Italian psyche through food, art, opera and architecture, Martin dissects a nation via sporting passion. Highly recommended.' (In Bed With Maradona)

'Martin has the field to himself and he makes the most of it.' --Richard Holt, author of Sport and the British

'A masterful analysis... Simon Martin has given us an elegantly structured and meticulously researched history of modern Italy.' --David Winner, author of Brilliant Orange

'Martin has the field to himself and he makes the most of it.' --Richard Holt, author of Sport and the British

About the Author

Simon Martin is the author of Football and Fascism: The National Game under Mussolini which was awarded the Lord Aberdare Literary Prize for Sports History in 2004. He holds a PhD from University College London and has taught there, as well as at the University of Hertfordshire, the University of California Rome programme and New York University in Florence. He currently teaches at the American University of Rome and is a Research Fellow at the University of Hertfordshire and the British School at Rome. He appeared in the BBC2 documentary 'World Cup Stories' and is an FA qualified coach.

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By R. A. Langham on 2 Nov. 2012
Format: Hardcover
If anyone had any doubt about sport's ability to warp society, Simon Martin's sumptuous Sport Italia will leave them without arguments. A nation, remember, only since 1861; Italy has survived its first one and a half centuries by following the path described in Benedict Anderson's influential book, Imagined Communities - and sport has played an integral part in that.

Witness the birth of the Giro d'Italia cycle race, launched by a newspaper in La Gazzetta dello Sport that has intervened on many occasions to reflect the interests of politicians, businessmen and lobbyists. Witness also the carefully constructed reputation Italy forged for itself as a motoring nation, both on the track and the autostrada.

Martin is the author of Football and Fascism and the inter war period naturally looms large in this account. The monuments of Foro Mussolini attest to that - and many still stand. It was a strident period of success for Italy, with two World Cups won - the number of foreign born players that helped them to victory conveniently forgotten by the heinous regime.

After the defeat of the far right, the country reverberated to a number of battles for souls. The old guard versus a resurgent Communist Party; the rapidly industrializing North versus the undeveloped South. On the individual level, these paradoxes were exemplified by two greats of cycling - the God fearing, upright Gino Bartali versus the `alternative' Fausto Coppi. In truth, the two were closer in spirit than their proponents would ever have admitted.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dave Hill on 15 Sept. 2011
Format: Hardcover
Just read this having read the authors previous book' football and facism', this effort builds and develops the Italian theme, witout doubt one of the worlds great sporting nations. This book gives an insightful and fascinating history of italian sport, a must for the thinking man (and women's) sport fan. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Tabsinthe on 16 Sept. 2011
Format: Hardcover
For anybody that has read and enjoyed John Foot's Calcio, David Winner's Brilliant Orange or Simon Kuper's Football Against the Enemy, this book is essential reading. If you ilke sport, it's a no brainer - buy it! If you have an interest in Italy - why haven't you already?
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Fascinating History 6 Jan. 2013
By borden painter - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Thorough research combined with lively prose yield a book that weaves the history of modern Italian sports into the political and cultural life of Italy. Anyone interested in Italian history will find Martin's book a rich and rewarding account of the significance of sports in the nation from Mussolini to Berlusconi.
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