Joyful Mayhem: Bakhtin and Football Fans

  • Mikita Brottman


The clamor and chanting of a large crowd of football fans embodies, to many people, all that they most fear and loathe: drunken, bawdy, brawling male youths violating public peace and privacy by howling out their trivial allegiances. It is my suspicion that any anathematized subculture must be extremely powerful in the way it so easily threatens all levels and elements of society. In this chapter, I hope to discover some of the reasons how and in what ways the subculture of football fans functions to demolish piety, and thereby to disrupt the official solemnity of the status quo. Any phenomenon so threatening must, it seems, be also somehow meaningful in its presentation of radical and often unpopular views addressing social, political, racial, and sexual inequities, thereby airing explicit versions of normally repressed ideas about society, its valuations, and ideologies.


Football Game Home Team Folk Song Opposing Player Football Helmet 
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© Mikita brottman 2005

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  • Mikita Brottman

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