SHE Level 3
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M3V225835
Module Leader Fiona Skillen
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject Tourism and Events
  • B (January start)

Summary of Content

This module examines the evolution, diffusion and marginalisation of forms of sport and popular culture in Britain between 1850-1939. The module will help students understand the changes and continuities in British leisure, looking at the impact of social and economic changes during the period and the impact that these changes had on the evolution of popular culture and sport. Students will explore the theories developed by sports and leisure historians to account for these changes, ideas and explanations such as 'the leisure vacuum', social levelling, social control and commercialisation. Students will consider the ways in which class and gender also influenced an individual's ability to immerse her/himself within the newly emerging culture. Students will be encouraged to deepen their understanding of the themes in a number of ways; we will work with local archives, where possible we will try to visit a local heritage attraction or have guest speakers to discuss aspects of the course within our local context.


Indicative Syllabus Week 1: Introduction: What is popular culture? What is sport? Week 2: Popular Culture and Sport: Understanding their sources Week 3: Industry, urbanisation and the reconfiguration of time Week 4: 'Rough' pleasures Vs 'Respectable' Leisures: the public houses, gambling and sports versus Rationale Recreations and Codification of Sport (leisure vacuum) Week 5: Towards 'mass' culture: A culture of consolation and control? Social Levelling 19 th Century Commercial Leisure Week 6: 'Mass Culture' Cinema, Music, Dance, and Public Houses Week 7: Fair play?: Gender and the politics of leisure Week 8: Site Visit Week 9: Playing Like Gentlemen: Sport and Empire Week 10: Interwar Sport Week 11: Interwar Leisure Week 12: Conclusions -360

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to1 Recognise and evaluate the key debates surrounding the changing concepts of sport and popular culture;2 Have a sound knowledge of the socio-economic and political forces that have shaped levels of continuity and change in forms of sport and popular culture;3 Account for the long-term developments in the history of sport and popular culture;4 Be familiar with the range and scope of primary sources used by historians of sport and culture.5 Acquire confidence in the use and critical evaluation of relevant primary source material.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

The module will be delivered in lectures and seminars. In addition, tutor-led activities will be delivered using applied learning strategies. The module is designed to encourage students to question and examine the history of sport and popular culture in nineteenth and early twentieth century Britain. Lectures will provide insight into leading-edge thinking and research relating to the underlying theoretical concepts of sport and cultural history using case study examples to illustrate key points. This will be supplemented and underpinned by directed reading; e-learning and web-based resources and activities related to each topic area to allow a deepening of student learning. Lecturing materials will draw academic texts and journal articles, with seminars utilising primary source material to stimulates debate and discussion. Students will also be offered the opportunity to experience an aspect of Victorian, Edwardian or Interwar sport and popular culture, through a site visit to a relevant local heritage venue such as The Panopticon, Hampden Stadium (and football museum) or Glasgow's People's Palace, a guest lecture and/or visit to a local archive. The assessment structure will provide students an opportunity to articulate and share their knowledge and understanding of the key theories and debates around the development of sport and popular culture in Britain during on the literature and primary materials available. Students will be assessed through two assessments, firstly an essay and secondly an exam. GSBS will continue to use the advancement of GCU Learn as a blended learning tool through its teaching and learning as well as through engagement with students. GSBS will ensure that all modules are GCU Learn enabled and with the support of the Learning Technologists at the cutting edge of development of online materials. Academic staff and the Learning Technologists will continue to work together to develop and operate all modules on GCULearn to ensure student support and information sharing.

Indicative Reading

Reading will be recommended by lecturers from the key texts listed below, as well as from journal articles and websites. Students are also expected to undertake their own literature search relating to their assessments. A. Davies and S. Fielding , Workers' Worlds: cultures and communities in Manchester and Salford 1880-1939, Manchester, 1992. S.G. Jones, Workers at Play: a social and economic history of leisure 1918-1939, London 1986. B. Waites, T. Bennett and G. Martin, (eds.), Popular Culture: past and present , London, 1982. Paul Johnson (ed.) (1994). 20 th Century Britain: Economic, Social and Cultural Change (London, 1994). Ross McKibbin, Classes and Culture : England 1918-1951 (Oxford, 1998). Paul Thompson, The Edwardians: the remaking of British Society , 2nd ed. London, 1992). Arthur Marwick, British Society since 1945 (London, 1990). Smith, Malcolm, Democracy in a Depression: Britain in the 1920s and 1930s (Cardiff, 1998) Robbins, Keith, Nineteenth-Century Britain: Integration and Diversity (Oxford, 1988) Walvin, James (1978). Leisure and Society 1830-1950, London: Longman W.H. Fraser, 'Developments in Leisure', in W. H. Fraser & R. J. Morris, People and Society in Scotland, 1830-1914 . E. Griffen, England's Revelry: A History of Popular Sports and Pastimes , 1660-1830, Oxford, 2005. S. Jones, Workers At Play , Manchester, 1986, Chapter 2. R. Malcolmson, 'Popular Recreations Under Attack', in B. Waites, T. Bennett and G. Martin, (eds.), Popular Culture: past and present , London, 1982, pp.20-46. R. Mckibbin, Ideologies of Class , London, 1990, chapters 4 and 5. K. A. P. Sandiford, 'The Victorians at Play: Problems in Historiographical Methodology' Journal of Social History , Vol. 15, 1981, pp.271-288. I. Donnachie, 'Drink and Sobriety 1750-1850: some aspects of the Scottish experience', Scottish Labour History , 13, pp.5-22. A. Harvey, Football: the First Hundred Years , Basingstoke, 2005. A. Davies and S. Fielding , Workers' Worlds: cultures and communities in Manchester and Salford 1880-1939, Manchester, 1992, chapters by Andrew Davies and Melanie Tebbutt. R. Light, ' Ten Drunks and a Parson? The Victorian Professional Cricketer Reconsidered', Sport In History , Vol. 25, No1, April 2005, pp.60-76 R. Storch, Popular Culture and custom in nineteenth-century England , London, 1983. Collins, T. (2016) The Oval World: A Global History of Rugby . London, Bloomsbury Harvey, A. (2004) The Beginnings of a Commercial Sporting Culture in Britain, 1793-1850 . Aldershot, Ashgate Hill, J. (2002) Sport, Leisure and Culture in Twentieth Century Britain . London: Palgrave Holt, R. (1989) Sport and the British: A Modern History . Oxford: Clarendon. Huggins, M. (2004) The Victorians and Sport . London: Hambledon and London Jeffreys, K. (2012) Sport and Politics in Modern Britain: The Road to 2012 . London: Palgrave Macmillan Langhammer, C. (2000) Women's Leisure in England, 1920-1960 . Manchester: Manchester University Press Macrae, E.H.R. (2016) Exercise in the female life-cycle in Britain, 1930-1970 . Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan McCrone, K. (1988) Sport and the Physical Emancipation of English Women 1870-1914 . London: Routledge. Macdonald, C. (2011) Strong, Beautiful and Modern: National Fitness in Britain, New Zealand, Australia and Canada, 1935-1960 . Vancouver: UBC Press McDowell, M.L. (2013) A Cultural History of Association Football in Scotland, 1865-1902 . Lampeter: Edwin Mellen Polley, M. (1998) Moving the Goalposts: A History of Sport and Society in Britain since 1945 . Abingdon: Routledge Skillen, F. (2013) Women and Sport in Interwar Britain . Oxford: Peter Lang Taylor. M. (2008) The Association Game: A History of British Football . Harlow: Pearson Longman Tranter, N. (1998) Sport, Economy and Society in Britain, 1750-1914 . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. -108 Vamplew, W. (1988) Pay Up and Play the Game: Professional Sport in Britain, 1875-1914 . Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Transferrable Skills

1. Confidence to take control for own learning. 2. An ability to critically evaluate different perspectives and methodological approaches. 3. The ability to apply history, and research skills associated with history, to real world scenarios and local contexts. 4. Time management skills -360

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Lectures (FT) 24.00
Assessment (FT) 20.00
Tutorials (FT) 12.00
Independent Learning (FT) 132.00
Seminars (FT) 12.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Course Work 01 n/a 50.00 35% 2000 Word essay
Course Work 02 n/a 50.00 35% Source based project